When I first got Dodger he was pretty unruly on a leash. That age old question, “Who is walking who?” had an obvious answer. Dodger was definitely walking me. And while I worked to reverse our roles, I tried to give others on the sidewalk a wide berth.
However, we had a routine and we ended up often meeting the same people on our early morning strolls. The best of these people was Mary Lou. We saw her every morning without fail. And Dodger always was eager to great her…tugging at the leash, lunging towards her, looking back at me with a question on his face, “What can’t I just go say hi?” And I was always eager to try to control my crazy dog, to not cause any problems. For days Dodger and I played this tug-o-war game when we walked past her.
Finally, after watching us for several days, Mary Lou stopped us one morning and said to me, “Will you just let me say hi?!” Cautiously Dodger and I approached her and I managed to get him to sit and politely say hi. I will admit I was terrified he would knock this sweet, petite, older lady over. But he behaved. Mary Lou became part of our morning routine. Eventually she was always bringing treats in her pocket and Dodger could be counted on to spot her from blocks away. Mary Lou and I would have short conversations and we slowly got to know each other.
It’s fun how dogs enrich our lives in so many ways.