Thursday, January 29, 2009

Peter T. Dog (T is for Troll)

My running buddy (9+ year old lab) has been on a daily aspirin regimen for a couple weeks now, and it is really making a difference! He'd been slow getting up from the floor, tiring quickly on runs, and generally mopey, so it was time to try something for the arthritis. He's 80 pounds, so the vet said one pill is a good dose for him. Started slow, with a tablet every other day, while we waited to see if it caused stomach upset. It didn't, so he's now a one-a-day dog. He's eating normally, diving through shrubbery while chasing squirrels and birds, and is generally back to his normal cheerful Petey-self. I'm really glad this is working, because the stronger options the vet mentioned all required regular bloodwork, to check for organ damage. Aspirin is far less scary. (And less expensive.)

Anyway, since Saturday's long run w/out proper wrapping of knee, I've been having a tough time with inclines. I can make it uphill okay, but coming back down is not fun. Wednesday's 3.4 miles with inclines were not so fun, so I drove over to Riverside Park, for the long, FLAT path & crushed gravel trails. Seeing as how Pete's back to being the running fiend, I brought him along. Figured we'd go a bit slower, and I'd loop back early if I noticed him wearing out. He didn't. In fact, he was pulling me along, off and on, throughout the entire 6.3 miles, which hasn't been the case in a while. We greeted other runners, walkers and cyclists, stopped at every trail sign and about half the trees, and chased geese. (Technically, Pete chased geese. I was dancing around, avoiding goose poo on the grass.)

Biggest burst of towing capacity came from him as we approached his favorite spot (okay, one of hundreds of favorite spots) along the trail. He raced down the slope to his watering hole, underneath the bridge (see above). Not only did he drink, he wallowed. Climbed in the water and inched along on his stomach in a crouch, so he could be the wild water dog he knows himself to be. I was very glad for the elastic in the waist leash, because he scooted on his belly with amazing speed to get under the bridge. Once there, he proceeded to plop himself down on the sand, and rest his paws in the water, waiting.

Waiting for what? His keen "wild doggie" senses detected the approaching older couple with smallish dog. As soon as their feet hit the bridge, he let loose with the barking. Bouncing, tail wagging, but still...

My dog, the bridge troll. I'm so proud.

And, a regular old snapshot from the bank by the trout fishing area:

1 comment:

Slamdunk said...

Glad to hear that Peter is feeling better.

That looks like a great trail for running. I always appreciated my dog's water dips as that gave me a quick chance to wash off whatever funk she had rolled her neck and ears in during the walk/run.