Multi-purpose Walking

Happy Thorsday, little friday and Thankful Thursday to you.  Gretchen has a rather somber post today, but I hope you’ll read it anyway.  Part of being in a community includes sharing joys and pains, and we only wish there was more we could do than ask for good vibes for friends in need.

Mango’s mom also issued a little challenge.   She’s been tracking their exercise and such, and anyone who knows me well won’t be shocked to learn that I’ve been tracking our walks and such for quite some time.   Rain aside, we still manage to log a minimum of 2 miles almost daily, and on weekends, that total jumps up to 3-4 miles.   Keep in mind, this is DOG walking, not my own exercise, although certainly most days, my dog walks are the bulk of my fitness plan.

photoWhile the fur-girls would love to add some time and distance most days, what *I* feel we need to improve upon is manners for Sissy and socialization for Gretchen.  Sissy is QUITE verbal and likes to shout out at any creature she sees on her walks.  I prefer that she doesn’t do that, but the hound owners out there are laughing…  It’s almost impossible to silence a hound!  However, we’re working on it.  I’ll tolerate whines and such, but the flat-out barking won’t do.

Gretchen of course, takes her cues from the DIVA, so even when I have her in a firm heel and she’s just shaking and making quiet but shrill noises, if Sissy bellows, Gretchen yaps, which is TOTALLY unacceptable. 

My newest plan is to put them both in tight “heel” positions (Sissy on the proper left, Gretchen the adaptable on the right) as soon as I see a “threat”, and I alternate between “hush” commands and praising the miliseconds of good behavior before the need for another command.  When we have an epic, loud, verbal fail, the offender is immediately put in a sit-stay with a firm command for QUIET.

photo.JPGOf course, they both have a simultaneous epic fail nearly every time, so Gretchen must be secured first – for her own sense of being safe, which is REALLY why she goes cracker dog nutso – but that’s only mildly successful until I get Sissy to HUSH. 

I have also started turning for home if the above measures can’t restore order.  I do welcome input and suggestions. 

Thankful Thursday?  I’m very thankful for sunshine and the promise of a good walk this afternoon, even if it will be cold and damp.  Gretchen and I will bundle up!  (It’ll be a good 25 degrees above Sissy’s need for clothes.)

I’m thankful for my beautiful, healthy fur-girls too. 

What are you thankful for today?

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8 comments on “Multi-purpose Walking

  1. gMarie says:

    Thankfuls:
    ~loving dogs
    ~good vets
    ~sunshine
    ~puppy kisses
    ~walks
    ~Christmas carols

  2. AlisonH says:

    Dogwalking is exercising commands and obediences. It’s all good.

    Thankful–well, for just about everything. Even lupus: it made me grow up, y’know?

  3. Amy says:

    I’m thankful that we didn’t get any snow yesterday! I don’t mind the white fluff, just as long as it happens on a day when I’m off. 🙂

  4. Sue says:

    Thankful that Morgan is on the mend, but we’ll be heading to the vet in the morning with Bailey. Another leg injury. Why do they all think they have to copy each other when it comes to injuries?

  5. Marjie says:

    Mastiffs aren’t barkers, so I don’t know what to do about barking. But it’s nice that you and the girls walk so far every day. Imagine just how nuts Sissy would drive you without all that walking!

  6. We haven’t even mastered “hush” in the house, much less on walks! Also…as to miles walked…we need to walk an energetic 6 yr old Terrier Terror AND a now 13 yr old (yesterday!) old lady terrier….Sasha could go several miles easily, but Misty can’t…and seperate walks cause stress and grief for all….any thoughts? Thankful for toda’s “warm” sunny weather and a job well done!

  7. Carol says:

    I admire your ability to walk with your dogs.It really is a healthy thing to do for them as well as you. I cannot do it with Charli. She gets under my feet, wont pay attention, and barks at anything thAat moves. I have thought about enrolling in a class but I know it would be waste of money. She is much to bossy and would try to dominate the room. I bet your dogs like being out and about together.

  8. Katherine says:

    You probably already know I’m crazy and will be certain after I tell you what works for us. The trainer couldn’t get Macy to “hush” so she taught us the only way she found she could quiet the yappy little JRT. We have found it works with Max as well. They both know the word “NO” so we say, “NO bark,” making the word bark sound sharp like a dog bark. I can only say that it works and that the neighbors have finally stopped laughing at us. (It took a while for the laughter to die down). Anyway, enjoy your walking with the fur-girls. You are so lucky to be able to walk long distances with them!!

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