One of the things I have learned from having Tippy is that each day is truly a new day to be cherished and experienced. Things may look the same to me when we go on our walk, but, they really aren’t. There are always new smells from the critters that went walking by the night before, a new bird to chase, a new twig that has fallen out of a tree, etc.
I try my best to be observant of my surroundings and enjoy the newness of the day. I love Spring because things that I can see do literally change overnight. The grass is greener, flowers and trees bloom, butterflies appear, leaves bud out, etc.
Today on our walk, I spotted some of the tiniest wildflowers, henbit and white violets.
Things were going well, until Tippy smelled, and started digging up, a dead animal that the neighbor had buried. When I approached her to get her to leave it alone, she started growling at me. This “food aggression” is something I have been working on with her, so knew that I couldn’t just walk away. I took one step closer, she’d growl, I’d wait until she calmed down and take another step. When I was beside of the hole, she put her nose down in it, growled, and started digging.
My next step was to try to distract her by throwing a small stick. This didn’t work, but she did look up.
Fortunately, there was a larger, longer stick laying nearby. I got it while she continued to dig. I took my foot and pushed dirt back into the hole. That didn’t even phase her. So, I stuck the stick in the hole to try to claim the space. When I did, she grabbed the stick and I grabbed her collar. She didn’t growl or act aggressive in any way when I did. I led her away from the hole and let her go after we went about 20 feet. I was worried that she would make a beeline back to it, but she didn’t!! She obediently followed me back toward the house.
When we got a comfortable distance from the dig site, we played fetch with the stick. She really enjoyed that and ran around like a wild puppy. This was a treat for her. I rarely will play fetch with a stick because she doesn’t realize that it sticks out from her body and when she runs past me I get clobbered with it. A Frisbee is defiantly safer.
Wild flowers, lesson learned, AND fetch. What a wonderful walk we had!