|Mutt Strutt base camp.|
|The pups in their super awesome Michigan bandannas. Lots of people think bright bandannas make Big Black Dogs look friendlier and more approachable.|
Both dogs did amazing, and I was especially proud of Junebug. When I first got her as an eighteen-month-old, she would have had a massive meltdown at an event like this. (Now that she's good, I really wish I had some video of the crap she used to do when in the presence of other dogs.) Even today, when she's unvested she's not above saying something nasty to a dog she thinks is stepping out of line. So I was a little apprehensive about having her in the crowds where people would let their dogs run up toward her face.
She was a star all day. Not one cross word, not one incident of stink-eye. I think it really helps when she's in an environment of nearly all happy-go-lucky dogs, where everyone is just chill. Same thing happens at obedience trials, she's just cool as a cucumber because everyone else is too. Tons of other dogs were in Juno and Kaline's personal space, but not in an aggressive way, and they were completely fine with it. It was just a wonderful experience for all of us.
|My rock star.|
There was a great disc dog demonstration and then a costume and tricks contest. Kaline's one major transgression during this portion of the day was continually trying to scarf down the plentiful goose poop. So gross. He kept looking at me, affronted, when I'd pry his little mouth open and remove the stuff. "But Mom, everyone else is doing it!" And they were, except for Juno. Evidently goose poop is a doggy delicacy.
|Chilling in the grass, NOT eating goose turds.|
|Vinny, a pit mix who is currently available for adoption at PHS! This was how he greeted everyone.|
The dogs did well on the walk, though Kaline continued his annoying new habit of pulling. It's not like he gets out ahead and yanks me around, but despite pop-and-release corrections he keeps a constant tension on the leash when we are out with dogs he finds exciting (like a ton of brand-new dogs). Which hurts, yuck. And it makes me worry more about his little thinly furred neck. Juno was fantastic, pacing along steadily right at my side and keeping Kaline between us. At one point her Michigan bandanna fell off, and when we went back to get it she picked it up ever so nicely when I asked her to. We made a couple Michigan friends, and I was overjoyed when Matt actually knew where Kaline's name came from!
The walk was absolutely gorgeous, tree-lined and curving along the Bay. We could see planes coming in super low to land at SFO, and there were all different views of the Bay. Matt got tons of great shots. Little Ozzy is even more of a social butterfly than Kaline, and people and dogs both are so drawn to his adorable little mug. Pilaf was just cool, doing everything she was supposed to. She and Ozzy together are so cute!
|Amie with Pilaf and Ozzy!|
|My awesome girl after the long walk.|
Some dogs, understandably, are frightened of mascots, because if you didn't know there was a person in there (and how should they know?), those things are kind of freaky. Kaline took one look and thought: An enormous stuffie! When one of the mascots held out a paw for Kaline to sniff, my little guy opened his mouth and went munchmunchmunch. Didn't get a squeak, but still seemed satisfied. The mascots were charmed (thank goodness). If possible, I'd definitely like to figure out a way to work on mascots some more, since when Kaline is 80+ pounds it won't be nearly as cute if he munches on a paw. But I'm very pleased that yet another weird thing (in dog terms) happened and Kaline showed no trepidation. I love his confidence!
Hopefully we can do more outings with Amie and Matt and their gang soon!
|Kaline for the rest of the day, post-walk.|