10 February 2010

Team Small Dog visits the forest in the mud, a place you would never, ever want to go to so you won't need directions.

Right on my way home from Heart Dog Agility, where I practice with the dogs on my days off, is a little pullout on the side of the road.

The path leads to private land where the trains run, through a lot of old growth trees. The biggest redwood I've ever seen in my life is up there. I'm not sure if I'm going to tell you how to get there though, because I hardly ever see anyone up there. I like being in the forest with no one else. This winter, it's been empty every time I go there.

There's always a creepy factor, walking alone in valley forests, you just gotta hope it's too muddy for serial killers or blue hairsex smurfs to be hiding in the bushes. Otterpop almost always carries a weapon when we go forest running, though, so I feel pretty well armed.

I shouldn't make fun of Otterpop. But it's hard not to. She always has to select a stick that's longer than her, and heavier. And then that's the ONLY stick that works for her, entire walk.

Ruby of course, is always perfect in the forest. She has never once tried to leap off of the old trestle. Chase anything off a cliff. Bark her head off at a stump. Trots at my ankle, almost exclusively.

She tries to set a good example. Being Miss Manners, just try it you hooligans. It's not so bad.

Gustavo and I have reached a new compromise regarding the Focus Bootcamp and how it relates to forest running. Compromise being, he can run as fast as he wants as long as he is dragging his 20' leash and I can pick it up any time I want.

It's not his preferred way to forest run, but it works for me. It's a good time to practice the ever popular, More Recalls Than You Thought Possible protocol.

And yeah. We've never seen a bear in there. In case you were wondering.


Lynn Ungar said...

Taz the Terv says that if you ever want a Fearsome Protector Dog for this sort of outing he will find a way to come down from the Bay Area to help you out. He very happily provides this service for both my wife and a friend who go running before it's light out. But only if Otterpop won't snap him into little bits.

Agility Foot said...

Otterpop, what a character. Her neck must be really sore.

team small dog said...

Otterpop is weird. Her body is shaped like a zuchinni bread and she has no business dragging clubs around. Her other favorite thing are those giant pinecones, preferably sized bigger than her head. She'll happily carry around one of those for an hour.

She usually doesn't snap other dogs into bits. As long as they leave her and her weapons alone. She just skulks along, far away from them in her little invisibility bubble, just trying to vanish them her mind.