I have been planning for several weeks to take Lara out onto the main piece of our land for a run with my dogs. I have been very hesitant as 8 acres is a large piece of ground if you have a dog loose and cannot catch it. We have been working on lots of recall games and name games and I have been very comfortable that in our 2 acre training field I can normally get her to come back to me, her recall in the context of her safety areas is very reliable. She has shown very little interest in our 2 mini donkeys and our array of ducks and geese and two pet sheep.
Last week when I tried to walk her on a leash at the front of our property she put on the brakes and I had to carry her back to the yard. She is very scared of anything new so I was not sure she would even be brave enough to venture out with us. Anyway this morning it was so bright and cool outside I decided ‘today is the day’.
We carefully lured the Donkeys into our pond pasture with hay and the sheep into our training field. I was convinced that when we opened the gate, the same way we do every morning that my dogs would charge out, off across the bridge and Lara would stay back. WOW what a surprise, she charged off with them. Four dogs all running at top speed. As Lara hit the metal bridge for a second she glanced back and I felt for sure she would stop and retreat. With a huge Aussie smile on her face she bounded forth. She ran and ran and ran, through the stream, back and forth, jumping through the long grass and into the tree lined area.
We walked as the four dogs ran at top speed exploring everything, like dogs do, enjoying every smell as if it was a first time experience. As we walked we realized two dogs had gone missing. From the corner of my eye I caught a glimpse of a Red Merle Aussie running across the pond pasture and as she ran down the bank and into the pond she disappeared followed by a smaller, whiter Red Merle Aussie. Bailey had taken Lara off to the pond to cool down after their morning romp. They had navigated a gap at the bottom of the fence between the stream and the pond as the water level has dropped giving them just enough room to squeeze through.
They were polite enough to join us at the bottom gate, the entrance to the house, so we could open it for them. Lara had a ball; she was great around the donkeys, ignored the sheep, ducks and geese and fully entertained herself with the donkey poop as she rolled in it to help dry her off after her dip in the pond. So now on our daily morning and evening walks we will be entertained by the comical entertainment of two Aussies and not just one.
Lara was pooped, not just covered in it but mentally and physically pooped.