Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Brutus Apparently Has A Story To Tell

Now that it has finally cooled down a little, I've been spending more time walking Brutus. I don't know why I didn't notice this before, but he has a very definite "marking" pattern. We tend to walk on the same path every day, and I'm starting to think that the other dogs and their owners do too. I could almost walk it alone and tell you which shrub he's going to mark. The funniest part is when we've made it through the woods, and he doesn't have anything left in him to "mark" with. He still has about five spots left to lift his leg on, but nothing happens. He's such a "guy".

So anyone out there that has read prior posts on here knows that I am not an experienced dog owner. I had a stray dog as a young girl (Oscar, who was my best friend ever), and now Brutus. I read a lot of books on positive reinforcement training, and adopting an older dog, but I can guarantee that nothing prepares you for the actual process. Anyway, I digress. Does anyone out there know if dogs search out for each others smells? It seems gross, but I'm really seeing a pattern here.

I took Brutus to the dog park today, and it always brings a smile to my face. Whenever a new dog comes to the park, all of the dogs that are already there have to come running to the gate to say "hello" to the new dog. There's the mandatory butt sniffing, a little rough housing, and then off they go. I felt so bad for a young girl who came with a small dog. There were probably eight large labs there today, and all of them went running to the gate to say "hi" to her when she stepped in to the first entry gate where you take your dog off of their leash. Her dog maybe weighed five lbs., and I don't think that she was over 115. Most of the owners were half way across the field, so I finally walked over there and got in front of the dogs to help her get through the crowd. Honestly, if I were her I maybe would have turned around and come back another day, but I give her credit. She got in there and held her puppy out so everyone could smell her bottom, and then put her down to run. Everything went fine.

So, I guess in essence, this is my story about smells. Sorry about that. The whole thing just kind of fascinates me. Brutus can smell a mouse or chipmunk three blocks away, so I guess it doesn't surprise me if he's playing "mark where you've been" with the neighbor dogs.