Monday, July 9, 2018


Sometimes I have the greatest job in the world. Sometimes I have the worst job in the world.

When people ask me what I do, I don't say that I walk with dogs, I say that I play with dogs. And that's the truth. I am not one of those dog walkers you see tied to the end of a bunch of dogs, marching down the street looking totally miserable. I pick the dogs up, take them to a park and we play. That's it, really. Dogs are happy, I'm happy, their families are happy

It's a pretty good thing

In the course of all this, the dogs and I get to know me pretty well. With dogs it's all about trust. Properly trained dogs may respond to your commands but if they don't trust you, they're going to give that eye that says "You realize that if aren't totally chill, this behaviour won't last for long"

Playing with dogs is one of the best ways to build a bond, to gain trust. Play with them, show them the boundaries, remain consistent with everything, show them that you want them to have a good time and that trust will build You build a relationship with them

Sometimes that relationships ends. Dogs move away, or their owners change their situations or they can no longer handle the cost. So in that sense I've lost dogs.

But last week, I lost one in another way.

This is Ollie. I've been walking Ollie for a couple years now. He is thirteen, diabetic, losing his eyesight but he's my little scrapper. He's a fun loving little guy but if you have the misfortune to bump into you or he bumps into you (with his poor eye sight he doesn't often know the difference) oh brother, it's on

He always amazed me in the way that dogs do; he didn't let his health issues slow him down, little man just got on with business. I took him to fenced in parks and once in I let him go on his way, he would make his way through every inch of the place, sniffing and marking and backing down the big boys

But tough as he is,  eventually every fighter has to hang them up. I only walk Ollie twice a week, Wednesdays and Fridays. That Friday I got a text: Ollie's kidneys were shutting down. He was not going to survive. At that point he was pain free and his family had made the decision to not let him suffer, they were going to point him down.

The doctor wanted to do it on the Thursday but they said Hold off, we want him to go one last walk with Victor. Truly, I feel privileged. I gave him the best walk that I could; kept him safe, guided him out of danger, and let him sniff and pee his little heart out.

It was a brave tough thing that his family did. Not a very easy decision. Not easy for me either but I surely cannot compare. But that last day was a good one for the little man. Got bumped into by German Shephard cross and the scrapper backed him down

Good job Ollie. Leave your gloves in the ring

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