Saturday, April 21, 2007

Spring has sprung

pongo jumping for ball, originally uploaded by phaird.

WOW, the first really nice day in such a long time. It feels like forever since toby and I went to the park. Even got the MRS. to join us. Like so many, we felt locked into our house it was great to get out. We got to see so many happy dogs and people out and about for the first time in a long time.

This is pongo. A super happy guy who wanted to play with everyone. We were at Waverly Oaks park for about an hour and this little guy never slowed down.

There were lots of new poeple and dogs too. Some new to dogs, and still learning how all the dogs get along. The weather really brings everyone out and a good time was had by all.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Welcome to Dog Parks

I'm really excited about starting off our blog about dog parks. As a photographer and avid dog lover I've been kicking around this idea of a Dog Park book for almost a year now. With different "life crisis’s" and just doing research, this is the first productive step that I think I can make. I've been talking back and forth with a great writer who is also a lover of dogs and has really made dogs and dog parks a big part of her life. Together we decided that starting to put stories on line, and getting feed back from it, would be a great way to get interest in the book. So here we are all set up and ready to go.

Now we need to start gathering stories.

I'll start by talking about that huge line in life that my wife and I crossed when we adopted our dog Toby. We had just moved in with each other before we got married and knew that we both wanted a dog. Cats are okay but I really wanted a frisbee dog and she wanted the active companion who loves us no matter what. We found out about and started looking on line. One after the other was so cute. We started going to the local dog rescues to see who was their and saw so many dogs that needed a good home but none felt just right for us.

Then we saw Toby. As soon as we saw him we just knew he was just what we wanted so we wrote and called the place. They specialized in puppies and small dogs but we didn't hear back for a few days so we assumed that he was snatched up. Just as we started looking again, the woman from the sheltered called to say they were closed for a few days because their son was sick but if we we're still interested we could come down and see. The thing is though we we're second in line. Another woman called first and would be their 1/2 hour before us. So, keeping our minds open and our fingers crossed, we went to see him and all the other dogs they had at that time.

Once we got to the shelter, we saw a large number of small dogs (maybe 15) all running around, with all that small dog energy. Toby still stood out to us but we weren't sure what would happen. We met all the dogs and many we're very nice and I really wanted them all (not thinking practically). After talking to the owner, we found out that the woman who was interested in Toby decided on an older, slower dog that would be good around the house and slow walks. She was an older woman who wanted a companion more her speed. Toby was 2 at the time and had all kinds of energy. So we ended up spending quality time with Toby who really wasn't that into us at first but was being good in general.

After just a little back and forth with Rachel (then girlfriend) we decided that Toby was the one. What we didn't expect was that we'd walk out the door with him. But we bought a bag of dog food, a leash and a collar and took Toby home.

Since that moment, our life changed. We had a new responsibility that we never had before. We came together in a way that we hadn't expected. We became a family. We knew that a new chapter in our lives had started. We now had someone who depended on us and in many ways, we depend on him.

The idea of dogs in our society have changed to be less about property and more about family. The idea of using animals to do work for us has changed as our needs have changed. In a bigger and scarier world, dogs (and any animal) can dispel the fears we have and have that interaction that gets to the core of humanity.