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My K9 Companion can motivate!

September 16, 2010

Let’s be honest. When you “had a dog” as a kid, you didn’t really take care of it to the extent that it probably needed. I’m certain that there was a Mom or Dad behind the scenes ensuring this animal was bathed, fed, walked, checked by the vet, and an assorted other factors that were critical to the animals life. Now, my “ownership” of my childhood dog consisted of this.. walking her when I felt like it, dressing her up in my dance clothing and taking pictures (why she never bit me for this, I’ll never know), gathering much needed kisses when I needed them or was sad, and sending unwanted food under the table to her when the parents weren’t looking. Right? Isn’t that more of how having a dog went? We certainly didn’t keep them alive with our sporatic attention to them.

As adults, my husband and I chose to be a pet free home for over 10 years. We’re pretty anal, have allergies to dander and whatever other excuse worked for the time. We just weren’t ready. We started filling the home with kids, and the begging and demand to have a pet started to rise. So, what would one loving parent do – but to succumb to the children’s needs by offering FISH! This was our solution and it worked for awhile. As time has gone one, we have both been softening to the idea of having a dog. We both grew up with dogs (as stated above) so we weren’t anti-dog people per say, we just needed to be “ready” for that step.

There was a need for a home to an 11 month old golden retriever and without hesitation or much thought process involved (cause had we really thought about it, we might have actually said no!) we said YES! 2 days later, this darling dog entered into our lives and hearts forever. Her name is Chica and she’s got an amazing disposition about her. And of course, the kids LOVE having her around and offer as much “help” as I did when I was there age 🙂

Why am I writing this on a blog about fitness? Because with this bundle of energy – still a puppy dog, comes a greater need to be active! Let me list for you the ways in which Chica motivates me.

  • She needs to run. That way she will sleep. And, sleeping through the night is VERY important to me. So, several times a day we get out there to run the neighborhood, chase after balls and enjoy general mayhem of trying to get her as crazy as possible. A good solid tail-chasing has us all in a laughing fit, so that’s some good mojo going.
  • She sheds.  Fitness? Oh yes. I have to sweep 10x more than I used to and move the furniture to get all the hair under them.
  • She plays with a tennis ball in the house. We have all hardwood floors on the main level of the home, so when the ball rolls under the couch – we either listen to her bark and beg for us to get it and we do… or we listen to her back and beg until we do. Again.. moving furniture!!
  • She needs baths.  Because I have a tendency to be anal and don’t like smelly dogs, I choose to bathe her more often than most. However, with the large dog that she is, this takes some serious arm power to keep her in the tub. Not to mention, doing a VERY quick dry down (think vigorous arm movement) so she doesn’t shake and get her wet dogness (yes, I totally made that word up) all over the bathroom.

There are plenty more things that she needs from me that keep me moving and I’m not claiming that owning a dog is a way to exchange one workout system for another – but I’ll tell you what… this dog has put a new tempo in my step and has gotten me outdoors to play far more than I’ve ever done in a LONG time.

Enjoy your K9 and hit the trails with them! It might just give you that burst of energy that you need.

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