Just when I thought my 70-pound, 8-month-old puppyBen had stopped chewing everything in site, I came home the other day to find an almost half eaten twenty dollar bill. Stunned, I stared at the green paper remnant on the floor and couldn’t believe my eyes. It had finally come to this. Not only was Ben costing us a fortune in chewed rugs and shoes, he was now going right to the source.
Speechless, I scooped up the remains of the Hamilton and let out a breath. There was, I thought, at least 55% of the bill intact. Perhaps all was not lost and the bank would honor the chewed evidence and reimburse me. I felt a little better.
As for Ben, well he and Tucker (his dad, 7 years his senior) both looked up at me with innocent eyes, and indeed, there was nothing I could do to scold or train them not to eat cold hard cash. In all honesty, it probably smelled really good. Who knows where it’s been? Maybe I should spray my money with NOse offense. It works on everything else!
Anyway, after this money incident, my husband and I felt a good long walk was in order, for us as well as for them. We proceeded with our walking ritual, which we learned long ago, because the electric fence was not to be breached.
The first step – load the dogs into the car. Next, remove their electric fence collars (they always wear two collars, one with the electric battery and the other with their tags always removed at night for safe sleeping). Then we drive off the property and park in the street, attach their leashes and begin our walk. As silly as this sounds, driving off and ultimately past the electric barrier, really works. They know the “car” can pass through without getting zapped. Whatever you do, don’t forget to remove their electric collars and don’t keep them in the car with you! They not only freak the dogs out with their high-pitched whine, but it runs the battery down.
When choosing an electric fence company (we went with Freedom Fence), there are differences to consider. One of the features I like about Freedom Fence is the dog’s ability to return through the fence without that lightning bolt reminder, should they get through. Their battery senses where it is and turns off upon returning. They don’t get through often. It happened only a couple of times, once during an intense down pour. I’ve since “turned up” the fence charge which seems to be working.
As for our “walk,” it’s more like an attempt to walk a wild lion, than a dog. At least it’s that way with Tucker. My bad as I didn’t know what I was doing when he was a puppy and didn’t train him properly. Between the very large yard, a doggie door they can access at will, and an electric fence, I never really just walked Tucker on a leash. He really didn’t need a leash at the dog park either, but I am determined to be better this time around. As for our walk together, my husband ends up way ahead of me, keeping a fast pace with our 85 pound animal. I hold tight to the reins, trying my hardest to walk at my pace with Ben. It’s hard work, definitely not your casual stroll through the neighborhood. But hey, I chose two loving, wonderful, loyal Golden Retrievers and can’t expect them to walk the walk of a poodle (nothing against poodles. I grew up with one). Anyhow, refreshed after our walk and happy to be back home and off the leash, I had one more errand…off to the bank…to be continued…