June 18, 2013

Beyond the Fence Campaign: The Dog Days of Summer

Summer is a wonderful opportunity to discover the great outdoors with your canine companion. Dog Fence DIY encourages exploration beyond the fence!  Pack up the kids and the dogs and go explore your city.

Great Dane and ChihuahuaMeet our boys. Well, the four legged ones anyway. Chico is the the Chihuahua and he is also our first baby. He is pushing 13 years now and he is still pretty fit for an old timer.  Poncho the Great Dane is 2 years old and is so much more mellow than his little partner in crime.  We adopted him last May from our local Great Dane Rescue. These guys are best friends and they share everything.  Their beds, their kennel and they even take turns at the food bowl. They are the spitting image of my two sons, just the canine version.  And they are every bit a part of our family too.  

On days when the boys get restless we pack it them up and head to the park.  Our park of choice would be Tom Slick.  Not so much for the boys, but because it is the closest dog park to us.  There are 2 dog runs, 2 playgrounds and a lake with a nice trail circling it. There is also a log of open fields to run or fly kites.   A little something for everyone.  

Tom Slick Park

Every dog owner knows that socializing their dogs is at the top of the must do list!  We made this mistake with Chico.  He is a grumpy old troll who is miserable at the dog park.  So when we adopted Poncho, the very first place we went was straight to the dog park.  Yes, right after we signed the papers.  Mostly it was just to see how he would do.  And kind of get a feel for how he did around other dogs.  Even though he was staying at a place with a whole pack of dogs, its a little different when they are one their own.  At first, he was scared.  Then he got upset when another dog came running up to him.  And quickly we were reminded that he was a stray.  Running loose in the woods, starving and sick when he was found.  He is scarred and his tail is broken because his owner slammed it in the door.  We knew it was going to take a lot of work before he was ready for another trip to the dog park.


I’m happy to say that these days, Poncho is much better.  He still has a lot of work to do, but slow and steady wins the race.  We have gone back to the dog park a few times and he did great.  Mostly he minds his own business and just follows us as we walk around the park.  When his girlfriend from down the road comes along he plays more. But he still has some quirks to work out.  He has worked up to the point where he will run off and play with the other dogs.  But he seems to be an easy target for bullying.  And when you have a huge black dog barking back at your dog, I can understand why other people would be afraid  We will be getting some professional help soon. Mostly for us.  So we can learn how to help him feel more comfortable and confident when we take him out.   

Ponchos favorite thing to do is jump in the back of the van and go for a drive.  Head out the window, jowls flapping in the wind.  Of course this usually gets us a lot of funny looks and stares!  Kids love it though.  And when the Texas heat is just to much to bear, we curl up inside, under a fan and take a good ole doggy nap!  

Do your pets go on adventures with you?  Where is your favorite place to take your four legged friends?   Camping is our #1 thing to do this summer and I cant wait to bring all my boys along!

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