Saturday, 25 August 2007

Beyond the gates

Bingley's first glimpse of what lay beyond the gates involved a visit to the vet, but this mornings adventure was much more exciting and a lot more enjoyable. We were out by 7am, and even as we were putting on our boots Bingley knew something special was going on. By the time we'd attached his lead and opened the gate he was ready for off; he didn't need any encouragement - he was out there like a shot! 'At last' he seemed to say.

But in fact his first walk was more like one long extended sniffing session. He often snuffles along the bottom of the gates from the inside, and the very first thing he did this morning was push his nose along the outside of the gates - he really was quite intense about it! But then he was off in a zig-zag snuffle all the way down to the local playing fields which we thought would be a good place to start his big-wide-world adventures.

It was a beautiful sunny morning (at last) and the bird song was lovely, so Jane & I certainly enjoyed our walk as well. Bingley, oblivious to all this, just didn't stop exploring and sniffing; in fact one of the few times he did stop and stand still it was just to have a look at the local geese who had wandered out of the allotments. He didn't make any attempt to chase them, but simply watched them waddle away.

We didn't meet any other dogs, and he wasn't at all bothered by the cyclist who went past with squeaky brakes - just an interesting noise to Bing! The fields had recently been mowed and Bingley had great fun gathering up the clods of grass - it's nice to learn that he's going to be helpful with the gardening.

He had another short walk this lunchtime when I took him out to meet Jane on her way back from doing some shopping. The neighbourhood was much busier by then and I must admit that I felt a bit nervous when I saw the first dog walker approaching us. But everything turned out just fine and in fact this time we met two dogs and another puppy during our walk; but they were all greeted with enthusiastic camaraderie and Bingley made it quite clear that he's going to stand his ground when it comes to energetic encounters. Along the way he also received several compliments which would have made him blush if he'd understood them!

So a successful first couple of sorties. He's now thoroughly exhausted and fast asleep, and Jane and I are having to resist the temptation to wake him up and take him out for another walk! But I think that we're all looking forward to tomorrow morning when we can do it all over again.

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