On Friday August 14, 2015 we had a gorgeous day and a full pack of dogs. Our pack for the day included Logan and Beckem the Goldendoodles, Petey the American Bulldog, Tobey the Labradoodle, Wilbur the Border Collie / Flatcoat and Kili the German Shepherd.
The pack was full of energy and started playing chase pretty quickly. Kili is relatively new to the group. New dogs seem to go through a couple of phases. Phase 1 – Not sure what’s going on. Usually dogs are a little more uncertain, shy and reserved. Phase 2 is when the dogs decide these walks in the woods are really fun. They let loose a little more with the group and become a little more excited and playful. Phase 3 is when they understand the rules and are playful but not over-excited. They’ll break free from play when called. It’s where we aim to have our packs.
Kili has passed through Phase 1, he’s no longer unsure about walking with the group. He now gets excited when we get closer to the trailhead. He really wants to engage and play with the other members of the group. But he doesn’t fully know the rules yet. Which includes no nipping. While nipping can be a normal expression of dog play, in a group setting it can quickly escalate. Unfortunately, Kili nipped at Winston while trying to play, which Winston would not have, and it escalated into a mini tussle. The dogs emerged unharmed, but it meant leash time for the pair of them. Once on leash they were content to be near one another. We’ll have to keep an eye on them in the future and give Kili a little more leash time until we correct the nipping. Throughout the walk we could already see progress, Kili would respond to leave it so I’m sure they will have a positive friendship in the future.
The other dogs were energetic and many games of chase were played. Petey would bound through the forest at top speed. Logan and Beckem played a few games of chase, then settled into a mellow pace behind me. Tobey ran laps between me and the other dogs. He always seems to be the last dog standing when we load in the truck.
Tussle aside it was a great walk in the woods.