Once a week I load up my german shorthair pointer and we head up the canyon for our long run. She gets very upset if she’s not allowed to come on any of my runs. In fact, if I have a rest day she will park herself by the back door until I have to leave somewhere and need to climb over her (and fancy that, she thinks SHE’S invited at that point!)
She also does a flying leap of joy across the room whenever my running shoes come out and full on leaps into my arms for a thank you hug. If I take longer than a minute warming up I’m subjected to a bath of ‘hurry up’ kisses from her. She’s been a great motivator on those days that I am needing a kick in the pants to get out and go. However I wish she understood what Sunday’s were and wished that she also didn’t know that I have a snooze button for good reason to slowly wake up to the day. It doesn’t need to come in her leaping on the bed to greet me with her morning dog breath.
I’ve learned on my long runs to always wear shorts with pockets in them. I don’t know why, I look old fashioned without the tight capri length pants every other woman wears, but they work. I can throw what I need in my pockets. Short tight capris? Save those for short runs.
Tucked away in my pockets lies a supply of Clif Shot Bloks, my keys and a half of a peanut butter sandwich. For the dog. Yup, I have learned that my dog loves peanut butter. She can detect trace amounts in our house. And she needs a little fuel and energy same as I do. There are some really cool Purina Pro Plan SPORT Bars out on the market right now, but I’ve yet to spend the $2.49 a bar. Since she runs that much with me I reward her with the peanut butter sandwich and a chondrotin/glucosamine supplement at the end of our run.
In my other pocket I always have a supply of folded up plastic doggy bags. (or regular old plastic bags). Read this tutorial for folding them. They are fantastic. Unroll them and place them under the water fountain and they act as an impromptu watering bowl for the dog. Whatever she doesn’t drink, I can use as a cup/hose to wet her fur down to keep her cool on warmer days. It also works for what it’s real function is–a doggy poop bag. A three in one deal but you wouldn’t believe how many people stop me and tell me how ticked they are they bought expensive dog watering bowls and still have to pack plastic bags and water bottles.
Water bottles? I don’t usually have to pack those. The canyon trail is wonderful because there are so many people who longboard, run, and bike up the canyon that water fountains were installed periodically. The other major trail I take that runs along the mountainside and bypasses the canyon also has frequent watering fountains. I love not having to pack extra water when I head out. On my winter runs when the canyon is closed and the trail is covered in snow I’m forced to run on more surface streets (or the DREADMILL). I’ve trained the dog to run on the dreadmill a little but we do pack a water bottle. I know others who love water belts. For whatever reason, they don’t fit so well on me.
Around my neck I wear my Sport Dog ecollar. I rarely use it, but occasionally the stray squirrel that crosses the canyon road makes her crazy and she tries to pull on her leash. There are also several spots that I let her off leash to practice flushing birds or to get a drink from the real river. She likes to get back to her backwoods roots on occasion and be a dog–not the city Dasani or Fuji waterbottle loving dog I have turned her into but a fierce warrior bird hunter. The ecollar has been a necessity when working with her or calling her back when I allow her to venture out a little bit.
Of course, at the end of our runs I must keep all the windows down so she can sit in the back seat and cool down with her ears and tongue flapping in the wind. There is nothing better than running with my companion.
I was not paid or compensated in anyway for any of the products I mentioned in this post.