Since my last post, the condition of the state park trails has gradually improved…
Not too bad… just a few patches of raggedly ice left here and there. I could probably break out the scooter again at this point, except… I kind of don’t want to.
First of all, there’s Pip. I think acclimating Pip to the scooter is a project best suited to warmer weather when long stretches of time spent doing a lot of mental gymnastics but very little actual physical activity outdoors is more tolerable. And he’s just so darn happy to come along with everyone else and gets so much more exercise when he does. Plus, there has been a bit of tension here and there between he and Squash and it’s very handy to have a pleasant activity that they can bond over. Such as staring longingly at deer.
Small tangent… This was actually quite a humorous moment. I don’t think you can actually see any of the deer in the photo, but have you ever seen a cheesy horror movie where someone suddenly realizes they are surrounded on all sides by something? That’s what this was like, only with deer. The dogs were trucking along, they alerted to something, I stopped them so I could look around and see what they were looking around for, and there were deer everywhere. Ahead, alongside, and behind us on both sides of the trail. For the record, leaning waaaaaaayyyy back in your skijor belt is a fairly good substitute for brakes.
Anyway… second, there’s me. I get waaaay more exercise from canicross than scootering, and now that we’ve been going semi-regularly I’m finding myself loathe to give it up. Which is odd, because as I’ve mentioned before I actually dislike running quite a bit. Before I spent much time doing it I assumed canicross was just running, with dogs. But it really is its own unique thing, far more enjoyable.
Third, I hate teaching loose-leash walking/heeling SO much, and I’m terrible at it. I’m not consistent enough, nor in all honesty to I care enough, to probably ever teach dogs to truly master walking politely on a leash for every day walks. In this respect it’s like canicross has known me all my life, and instead of rolling its eyes and shaking its head at me, it’s patting me on the back and whispering “it’s ok, they’re SUPPOSED to pull!!”
Fourth, although I’ve mainly been using it as a way to exercise all three dogs at once, I think it will also be a good tool for taking them out one by one and working on verbal commands.
So… I’m not really sure why this post reads like I’m trying to convince someone that canicross is a good alternative to the scooter or something more than the consolation prize to skijoring. So here’s a picture of some turkeys that live in the state park where we canicross:
Edit: So yesterday afternoon, after I wrote the above post, we got a bit shy of an inch of snow. Not enough to ski on, mind you, but enough to cover up the icy spots and make scootering AND canicross relatively risky except to those who may have memorized where all the icy spots are. Which… yea, no, I can barely remember what I had for dinner last night. *headdesk*