Lucy, my non running dog, is, as of today, my running dog. As I mentioned, I have been working with Lucy for years to understand the fundamental workings of the leash. In the last year, I have been working with her on running so that one day she could be my running companion. Today is that day.
Today’s weather was completely gorgeous and I was determined to run. I’ve run most of my recent runs in the rain, or in the cloudy, dreary, wet weather. Today was perfect running weather, 70 and sunny. I wanted to run on the trails near my house, but I’m never a fan of running in the woods alone. I decided to give Lucy a chance. If she weren’t behaving properly I would just bring her home. At first, I was worried. Lucy went crazy at the sight of her harness and leash and flopped around like a fish as soon as I had her hooked up. After a minute or two, she settled into a nice trot right by my side. And she stayed that way (!) for the next two miles. I couldn’t believe it. Turns out my natural consequence method of dog training (letting her get hit by my bike tire) worked. She stayed by my side, running my pace, for most of the run. She seemed to be enjoying herself up until the time she pooped out. Right around two mile she stopped. Poor Lucy looked like she needed some Gu. She hit the wall. Still a mile from home, we trudged back at a run barely above walking speed. Despite this, Lucy and I had our first real run – the first run in which she ran with me, as my running dog. I hope there are many more to come.