It rained today which created a relief from all of the heat. Since it was nice outside and since Buddy hasn’t been on a walk for two or three days, I decided to take him for an extra special walk today: one that was long and during the day. I didn’t realize that it would be extra special for me too.
It started out normal enough. Buddy dragged me out of the house, I popped ear buds into my ears, and we started walking. Buddy sniffed at this and that, stopping to mark various things and I followed behind, allowing him to drag me and in turn dragging him when he fell behind. There was also a nice breeze. The perfect day.
We reached the park and started a slow walk around it. I allowed Buddy to do his thing since we didn’t have any time constraint or anything. He chased a squirrell and barked at another dog. I enjoyed my music.
We walked around the park and then we started to go, then started home. A car pulling in caught my attention. Normally I care very little about people coming and going, but there was something about this car…about the person that got out of the car. I had to get a closer look, so I allowed Buddy to lead me back into the park.
We walked slowly. I let Buddy be a dog. I let him lead me in the direction of the gentleman and the children with him. One was a little girl. He was pushing her on the swing. Buddy went toward them as I suspected he’d do as Buddy loves children.
The gentleman recognized him as a Chow. I’m always pleased when someone knows what he is. Oddly enough, most people who know what a Chow is are also people who have owned Chows in the past. He wasn’t any exception. He owned a red Chow. I think he said the dog’s name was King. He nicknamed Buddy “Mufasa.”
The little girl saw Buddy and immediatly wanted to play with him. He took her out of the swing and she came over to me requesting to walk Buddy. Then she demonstrated her alpha femaleness and took Buddy’s leash. Buddy took this all in stride.
So for the next thirty or forty-five minutes, we–the teen boys, the gentleman, and I–ran alongside the girl (she was 4) and Buddy. If Buddy started trotting faster than her little legs could carry her, I’d trot beside him and slow him down a bit. Eventually, Buddy and the little girl deveopled a rhythm that I can only describe as beautiful. Yeah, he’d still be rambunctious sometimes, but most of the time all she had to do was give the leash a tug and he’s slow down for her.
All the while the gentleman–possibly her father or possibly her grandfather I never asked–took pictures of her. This was the first time she’d ever walked a dog. I was impressed. This girl was a natural. I told her so. I made sure that I encouraged her. I gave her instructions and she was a good student and Buddy, well he seemed willing to please.
Eventually we had to part ways. The genleman had some errands to run. The girl wanted to keep Buddy. She assurred me that she’d take good care of him and that she’d never let go of him. I was touched. If I was in an emotional mood I probably would have cried because it was beautiful.
I allowed her to walk Buddy to their car. Seeing the open doors Buddy wanted to jump in the car and go with them. She was reluctant to let Buddy go. The gentleman put her in the car, thanked me for letting her play with Buddy, and got in the car. Buddy and I walked home.
I’m sure the little girl cried. It crossed my mind to give them my number just in case the little girl wanted to play with Buddy again. I never acted upon it. Who knows, if it is meant to be maybe we’ll meet again. Maybe our paths will cross again like they crossed today.
I don’t know what causes me to act on some impulses and not on others. This is the second time that Buddy’s presence has caused me to do something out of the ordinary and I was rewarded with a brief, but important, connection that gave me a glimpse of what I’d love to do.
I’ve decided that I’m going to train up Buddy over the next year and after his second birthday, if he hasn’t developed the over-protective nature that Chows are known for, I’m going to get him qualified as a therapy dog. With the way Buddy is with children, I feel like he could do some good in this world. I feel like he came into my life, not just to help me, but to help the people that I come in contact with.
We’ll see what the future holds for Buddy and for myself. I do know one thing, Buddy and I are in for more adventures in the future and I’m glad that I have people to share those adventures with.
Until next time, if you feel compelled to do something that you normally wouldn’t do maybe try doing it. You never know what kind of connection you could make.