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If you follow our blog you will already have been introduced to Billy, who sits neatly one slot above Daniel in the Naslund family hierarchy. I recently had the pleasure of looking after Billy for a week while Daniel was on holiday and it got me thinking about how to incorporate micro adventures in to a dog’s daily life so that a short walk around the block, or to the park, doesn’t become the highlight of their day. Points to anyone who gets what song this blog title is inspired by!
Life is busy and it is quite easy to fall in to a mundane routine, especially if you work a Monday-Friday, 9-5 job. Having a pet like a dog is a great way to keep active and to make sure you get outside every day, even if you really feel like you can’t be bothered and often when you do push yourself to get outside, you will feel 10 times better than you would have if you had stayed inside watching tv. One thing I started thinking about though when looking after Billy was that, even though I had had a busy day and a short walk to the park would be fine, this was Billy’s highlight of the day so it seemed important to try to make it special as often as possible. I didn’t want his week with me to fall in to a mundane routine through no fault of his own.
Instead of going to the gym to exercise, I decided to go running outside with Billy – filling two needs with one deed and making Billy’s walk that bit more exciting. Since he isn’t my dog I didn’t want to let him completely off the lead in case I ended up losing him. Thanks to Daniel pointing it out, I learnt that Billy’s Ruffwear Roamer Leash could be tied around my waist making it super easy for both of us to run around - two for the price of one: product training and having fun. I let Billy dictate where we went so that the adventure was his and not mine, even though it resulted in me being shin deep in the river. It was so cool to see Billy knackering himself out while having fun at the same time.
The waves ended up being pretty good one night that week as well and my flat mate asked if I wanted to make the most of it and go for a surf. My initial thought was “aww man I can’t I have to look after Billy and take him for a walk”. Then I thought, why not take Billy with us? He will still be getting outside and it will be a bit more exciting for him than walking to the park. We took it in turns to surf so that one of us was always hanging out with Billy. I ran up and down the beach with him when I wasn’t in the water and also took him up to the water to see if he wanted to play around in the shallow waves. After a good surf, we got to enjoy a beautiful sunset and a salty cuddle on the beach. I loved it, he seemed to love it and once again he was knackered by the time we got home, job done!
My eyes were opened to a whole new world of adventure that week, having a dog shouldn’t mean you can’t go on your micro adventure, you just need to be creative and tailor the adventure to suit taking your dog with you. If you like stand up paddle boarding or kayaking don’t feel like you need to leave your dog at home, take them with you and let them have a go with you. There are loads of good life vests for dogs out there. Here is Billy and Daniel enjoying together in France!
Even if you fancy going for a hike and a camp to watch the sunset and sunrise, you can still take your best buddy, maybe just let him/her have a practice at camping with you in your tent in the garden first, to make sure there aren’t any surprises when you are in a more remote location.
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