We follow this contest every year – not only are the dogs so endearingly ugly, the event celebrates shelter dogs. Click here to see the pic of this year’s winner, Pabst, along with a slideshow of the runners-up!
And so ends another busy weekend!
We started Friday with the first in a series of eight training sessions with Emmett and Lucas. The course we’re taking adds escalated distractions and distance to commands. The boys are pretty decent with distance – not so much with distractions. Especially other dogs. Or kids. Or food. Or, actually, pretty much anything that moves! So this class will be great for them and for us! Week one went swimmingly and ended with Lucas romping with a handsome German Shepherd named Checkers.
The weather was stifling most of the weekend. Hot, humid, uncomfortable. In weather like this, we can’t walk the boys because they overheat so easily, but then we’re left with a whole bunch of excess energy in the house. Any suggestions on some good indoor energy burners? You can only play “find it” so many times before you run out of places to hide their toys!
Today, though, was utterly perfect. It was a total fluke, but the whole day was clear skies, almost no humidity, and a nice breeze to counterbalance the heat. We took advantage and went for a nice stroll. I had Lucas’ leash, and for a while I let him walk ahead, while I followed behind. It was a pretty zig-zaggy walk, but also interesting to see where he chose to go when he was in the lead!
Along with the beautiful weather, we got a gorgeous sunset. I snapped a couple pics of Emmett and Lucas enjoying the view from our balcony. Incredibly, the sun was setting at 9:45 pm. The perfect ending to a lazy Sunday!
This is Emmett:
He is the sweetest boy you’ll ever meet. Yes, I may be biased, but he truly does melt every single person he encounters. We spent this past weekend at my parents’ house with many relatives and cousin-pups coming and going. Yesterday about 20 people came to cookout, including my elderly grandfather and great aunts. Emmett spent the evening going from person to person, laying his head on their laps, and gazing up with his big brown eyes. Needless to say, he also spent the evening getting rubs and pats and treats from those very same laps!
While everyoned oohed and ahhed over darling Emmett, I got to boast how he is now a registered therapy dog and will soon start working in local schools and hospitals to make people’s days a little brighter. One of my great aunts even asked if he would come visit her nursing home. Everyone gushed that he would be perfect for that – except one person said, “Well, isn’t he a pit bull?”
And yes, there’s no question, he’s a bully mix. And yes, I know there are so many misconceptions about bully breeds out there. But I also know that there are a zillion dogs who are as sweet and charming and utterly loveable as Emmett is. And many of those dogs don’t get a fair chance at a good life for a lot of stupid reasons – breed specific legislation, media hype, hyperbole.
In fact, shortly after we adopted Lucas, John and I took both dogs to a training course at Petsmart as an exercise in bonding with our new little one. Of course, Emmett schmoozed with all the other dogs and owners, and everyone always patted him. On the last day of class, the wife of someone in our class came said that she thought Emmett was a very good dog. We said, thank you! Then she asked us, “When you two have children, will you have him put down?”
The unfortunate reality is that so many people share her (utterly ridiculous!) idea about bully breeds. And as much as I always want to defend the heck out of Emmett, the absolute best way to combat that nonsense is to have a very well-mannered, very friendly bully! Also, PBRC is a fabulous resource that I discovered when we first brought Emmett home and started to encounter bully prejudice, and it’s a great place to direct people who are interested in learning more or helping find a pit bull a loving home!
Rant over! 🙂 But here are some cute pics of Emmett anyway!
There is a fabulous dog park about twenty minutes from our house. It’s huge and well maintained. There are benches and shady spots, water fountains and picnic tables. The park requires membership, which isn’t cheap, but it’s definitely a good thing because it helps ensure that the dogs there are vaccinated. However, it doesn’t ensure anything about the dog’s behavior – or the owner’s for that matter!
For the last ten months, we’ve only gone four times, despite the expensive membership fee. It’s never been particularly enjoyable for a variety of reasons – owners talking on their cell phones, people not picking up after their dogs, etc. And at this dog park Emmett got in his first (and only!) fight.
Our membership is about to expire. The boys really do love running the full 1.5 acres, playing with other dogs, and just doing something different once in a while – but I don’t know. I’m undecided. So before I write that check, I wanted to throw it open to you.
What do you think? Dog parks – fun puppy playground? Or bad idea?
Whenever I get a comment or when I’m reading other blogs, I love following links to see what’s on the other side. From a great comment, I found another fabulous dog blog that I wanted to share: Battery Powered Dog! The blog is about the life and adventures of Hoover, a rescue dog with a pacemaker. If nothing else, click on over to check out the dashlingly handsome picture of Hoover on the banner!