Editors note: This is a guest post by Charlee The Dog. It first appeared years ago in the crazy man’s running blog
Running With the Crazy Man Next Door
By Charlee the Dog
Hi, my name is Charlee, and this is my first ever blog post. Several months ago, I was a lonely lost dog wandering the countryside. My fortune changed one day when I came upon a group of adult humans gathered around a tall fence. They were watching some young humans hit a bouncing ball back and forth over a net with some funny looking sticks.
I wanted to chase the ball, but I was too tired and hungry. The fence was keeping me back anyway. That night, one of the humans, a big man with a deep voice, put me in his truck and took me home to a new life.
My new life is great. I have two new dog friends and plenty of food and water. I’m not fenced in, but with all this good food and water, who needs to leave?
There is one slight problem, though. There is a strange human next door. He wears funny colored shoes and clothes. Well, I think he does. I’m color blind so I can’t really tell. I do know he runs up the road and back almost every night. Sometimes more than once. Then on Saturdays, he’s gone for hours. This seems crazy to me.
A few weeks ago, I started following him to see where he goes. Sometimes I’d get too close and almost trip him. Not on purpose, of course. Other times, I’d keep back and wait when he’d go down the cul-de-sac where the mean dogs live. Those mean dogs don’t have a fence, either, but they don’t leave the yard. It is almost like there’s an invisible force holding them back. Still, I don’t take chances down there.
Every now and then, I spot a rabbit and chase it through the woods. I WILL catch that rabbit one day. Not sure what I’ll do with it when that happens, though.
Last week, I was following the crazy guy again, but I kept getting distracted by pickup trucks driving by. They all looked like my owner’s truck, and I wanted to chase them. The crazy running guy wouldn’t let me, though. When we got back close to his house, he went inside for a few minutes.
When he came back out I ran to meet him, like I usually do. I thought he was reaching down to pet me on the head, but instead, he attached something to my collar. What a minute, I thought, what is going on here? I pulled back and realized he was holding the other end of a…LEASH!
Oh no, not me, I thought. I’m a country dog! I don’t need no stinking leash! Then he started running again and said: “Come on, Charlee, girl”. Well, I obeyed. We had a great time, and we’ve gone a few more times since.
Apparently, running with dogs is new to the crazy man next door. You may be considering it or may have done it. Either way, he wanted me to share these tips with you:
- Make sure your dog can handle the run. I had no problem running with the crazy man. Not only am I young, but he had also seen me run around after him before. He knew I could handle it. (He is also slow, so that helps). If your dog training partner is out of shape, start out with walks and build up gradually.
- Beware of hot roads. Hey, remember, we dogs are barefoot. Roads can still be hot in the evening. I like to run in the grass just off the road.
- Use a four to six-foot nylon leash. Avoid the retractable leashes. With a nylon leash, you can loop it around your wrist easier.
- Take some water along. If you are running long enough to take some water along, take some for your dog, too. Better yet, take some for the dog even if you don’t need it.
- Avoid other dogs, if possible. We don’t do down that street with the mean dogs. Sometimes other dogs don’t like visitors. Please be careful.
- Be prepared to clean up. Sometimes a dog’s got to do what a dog’s got to do. Be prepared to clean up. See if you can get the dog to take care of business before running!
Any other tips? The crazy man says please share in the comments below.
POPIFOTO! (Put one paw in front of the other!)