Since we're on the subject of water (and way behind), this last Sunday we went to the Pooch Plunge at Nashville Shores. It was a benefit for Nashville Public Television (NpT). Some of you may remember we tried to go last year and the weather didn't cooperate for them and it was eventually canceled. This year though, was another story altogether. There were tons of dogs. Stella had a lot of fun although for the first hour it was like chasing a delinquent kid around.
As usual, before we went I took her for a long walk to (presumably) expend some of her energy but this time, under such stimulating conditions, the long walk just didn't take. Once we got into the gate and I let her off the leash, she went tearing off around the outer perimeter of the event like a freight train. It was basically harmless but managed to score her lots of attention. By far, it exceeded the efforts of any and all herding type dogs in attendance. When she finally burned off the top layer (believe me there were six or seven left to go) she discovered that the sponsor tables had treats on them and that if she ran up to the table and gave them the look, they would give her a treat. Now, you might ask yourself what happened when they finally cut her off? Well, she either stood up on the table and demanded one or waited until they looked away and rammed her whole head off into the bucket and helped herself (ahem!) Very unladylike. Very unStella. Bad. Dog.
Once I was finally able to get her to understand that there were consequences to this sort of foolishness, she gave up on the food and crashed the Flyball demonstration. I looked away for two seconds and heard someone yell "Wait! Where did that dog come from?" When I followed their gaze she was chasing the Flyball dog and I had the urge to just say: Jeez, I don't know but somebody needs to get control of that thing. Again, harmless but totally disruptive. She did the same to some pups taking the Canine Good Citizen test. It was a good chance for her to experience the fact that not all dog interaction involves playing. Understand - her version of playing goes two ways-- Chase and Smackdown Wrestling. She's as happy to be chased as she is to be the chaser and she'll adjust her speed if it's a little dog that she could easily overcome; those are the ones I love to watch.
She got into the water a time or two and was very curious about the dogs that were busy retrieving things but never actually made an effort to swim (basically killing my theory that if she saw dogs swimming, she'd copy them.)
Then she found two playmates one after the other who thanks to their owners, gave her the work out she was really after. The first was a young Great Dane named Bella. She was pretty gentle but not intimidated (as some dogs are) by her rough and tumble approach. The second dog was Sampson and for the record, if Sampson was our neighbor I have no doubt he'd be Stella's new boyfriend. The two of them wore each other out. He was a young (competitive) dock-diving German Shepherd. After several rounds of full-throttle playing which I might add, scared the crap out of some patrons, and the life guards, he was the only dog there able to lure Stella into the water. She still didn't swim - but just like all the girls with a bad boy crush, she followed him right in there against her better judgment.
Needless to say, this all culminated in one big satisfied snooze complete with snoring all the way home. We had a great time (minus the initial craziness and if any of you Flyballers should happen by here - we apologize again) and hope the folks at NpT made a big wad of dog-friendly cash. Thanks for the swim.