Archive for the ‘Dogs’ Category

Podcast Episode 73 Clint Eastwood Cats and Running

In Dogs, Social Media on December 16, 2011 at 6:56 am

Etch a Sketch Run

In Dogs, Etch a Sketch on December 11, 2011 at 4:03 pm

Some times you just want to have fun. No purpose, no set mileage just get out there.  Today was step back to my childhood days.  do you remember Etch a Sketch? That red tablet with the grey screen and the two knobs that I could never in my life do anything but squares and lines.

Today was my Etch a Sketch inspired run. So many times I have uploaded my Garmin data and said “Hey that looks like a dog or a cat or a rhinoceros!” So with that in mind I set out to “draw” a dog using the streets as my canvas.

I had the tail and two sets of legs done when my dog, my real dog Koda was still feeling good.  Typically on runs greater than 2 miles he starts to pull back. And typically be ever so mindful of his increasing age and aging hips I head for home.  But the last few runs I had a bit of an epiphany.  I started to not go into the trails and the big park where we run 99% of the time.  The park is pitch black and we have to run about a mile by headlamp alone.  The exit on the other side isn’t much brighter.  For the longest time I thought Koda had reached the end of his physical limits and he wanted to go home.  It never occurred to me that he didn’t like the darkness.

So the other day I decided to change it up a little and I turned around at the edge of the park. We headed back into the streets where there are lots of lights and traffic (You can’t have it all!). At the 3 mile mark the dog still had spring in his step.  Hmmm?  On the next run I stuck to the streets and went a little further, same result.

On todays run, Etch a Sketch in mind I did the tail and the legs and was at the 3 mile mark thinking about home.  Koda showed no signs of anxiety or hesitation so we went out a little further.  My Etch a Sketch dog looks a little long in the snout but my real dog is all smiles(If you believe dogs can smile-I do!) after 5 1/2 miles.  I’ll try some more Etch a Sketching another day.  Thanks for reading

Therapy Run

In Dogs on November 21, 2011 at 12:37 am

I went for a 3 mile run today.   My first run in a couple of weeks or so it seems.  I’ve had this nagging chest cold that just won’t go away.  There is no fever, no runny nose, just a dry cough that comes on in fits.  The weather was perfect it was cold outside and not raining.  I think it’s a sin NOT to run in the Pacific Northwest in the winter when the sun is shining and there is no chance of rain.

So I leashed up both dogs, bundled up and headed out the door.  You see it was part therapy for me and part therapy for my dog Koda.  I have been away all week and with this chest cold I’ve haven’t run.  If I don’t run then Koda doesn’t run either. If Koda doesn’t run, he has the same anxieties and frustrations that humans are prone to should they not run.

Case in point, the dogs get left in the house when my wife goes to work and the kids go to school. It’s a part house protection and part dog comfort an agreement we have when the weather is ugly.   I went away, I was the only one away.  During that week I lost my favorite Under Armor running visor and calendar that I write down my training days on.  I lost it to a very frustrated Golden Retriever who is mad at me.  He chewed both of them up to bits.  He selectively picked out those two items out of the entire run of the house and chewed them to a barely recognizable pulp.  My stuff and no one else!

By the time I got back from my trip, the dogs were being crated, a regression back to their puppy days.  You know crating a dog is supposed to be comforting to a dog.  Less area to protect and fewer anxieties for the dog, I have been told it’s more humane.  Ruth has a crate and Koda has a big crate and we use them on occasion. But it is not without its frustrations. Ruth likes crating and Koda does not.  I will open up the crates and say ‘Get in!’, at which point Ruth  will always go in the big crate.  I can’t get her out and get Koda in with any sort of ease.  So it ends up the two dogs go in one crate.  They don’t seem to mind and almost seem to prefer this setup.  To me it looks weird!  Hence we gave up on crating as a standard practice.

I wish dogs could talk.  I wish they could voice their frustrations.  We as humans are left to pick up the clues (literally).  I’m more interested in the more subtle things they could tell you.

“I’m a little sore today! Can we only go for two?”

“Hey I’m feeling great let’s do two more”

“That hill was tough can you give me a second and I’ll be good for a couple”

“Dude! Where the f__k have you been? I ate your f__king hat because you haven’t run in a week! A__hole! WTF?”

Well our therapy run went well.  I took both dogs out.  Even my little Miniature Schnauzer Ruth kept up to our pace.  It wasn’t about pace it was more about getting therapy.  One mile was all it took. I dropped them off and went for another couple miles for my own therapy.  It’s amazing how much fitness you can lose in a couple of weeks.  I’m sure a lot of it is only perceived, couple that with a chest cold and it feels like running for the very first time.  It was a kind of discouraging but on the plus side it can only get better.  I just need more therapy.