Sunday, 28 May 2017

A taste of freedom

The walkaround arranged by the puppy supervisor for Friday was cancelled due to a funeral she had to attend. That meant that Diesel's free-run, supervised by the PS, was also cancelled, but she told me to go ahead and do it on my own.

This sounds good, but to be honest I've been a little anxious about Diesel's recall. He sometimes comes and sometimes he doesn't. In fact in the garden he seldom pays any attention to me at all and will trash the flowers and eat moss and anything else he can do before even looking in my direction. Not a good start.

However, he needed to start walking off the lead and knowing what a proper dog walk entails, as for the last two months + all we've done is tramp the pavements and do lots of shopping!

So what to do? I made the decision that it might be a good idea for us to do the first free-run with another puppy who's recall was completely sound. It just so happened that on Friday I was invited over to the next village where another puppy walker, Kate, lives with her puppy, Robyn and Robyn has a great recall. We arranged to do a walk yesterday and so Diesel and I went back for lunch and a walk.

It went ok. Not brilliant as Diesel still wanted to take his time to do anything if he was engaged in, like sniffing, but at least he came back. We only managed a 15 minute walk as it started raining and also Diesel needed his lunch.

This morning I decided to brave it and take him out on his own and to my complete surprise he was excellent. He came when he was called and he ignored another dog when the owner said she didn't think her's wanted to play. It took quite a lot of treats, but I do think he's got the idea and I'm hoping it'll only get better from here as a good walk is the cure for a lot of doggy problems in my book... as long as he returns when called of course!

My only other bit of news is I've been picked to read one of my poems at the Borders Book Festival in June. I wrote it for the Borders Writers Forum Anthology and there were only 5 of us from BWF picked. I'm now feeling a bit anxious as the other 4 are well-known writers (at least in The Borders) who regularly read their work at festivals. I've only read one of mine out at a small village event way back in 2009, so I'm a complete festival virgin on that score. Funny really... I can talk to a whole conference about anything to do with work, but when it comes to my writing... well that's a different story. It'll be an experience that's for sure. Now I just have to hope it'll be a positive one!

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