Today will be the last warmish day for a while so I wanted to make sure I exercised Charlie with a lot of outdoor time today. My plan was to take her to a nearby local spot for a hike and a game of Chuck-it around the lake, go to the grocery store and grab a few things and then take her to a city park with some great paths and lots of other dog pee-spots to sniff.
That plan would give Charlie a little bit of everything... a quiet nature hike, ball fetching, riding around in the car and a city hike with lots of smells.
The first part of the plan went well, although we had to turn back halfway around the lake because someone was cutting a hole in the ice with a chainsaw for ice fishing and it spooked Charlie. That was okay though because she was panting pretty good by then and had had tons of fun already.
Errands went okay.
But after errands, I was hungry. It was 1pm and I needed lunch. So I stopped at Panera and got a Thai Chicken Salad (my favorite) and rather than eating it in the car in the parking lot, I drove us over to the city park on our agenda and ate it in the parking lot there.
Problem was, the parking lot was in full view of about 20 squirrels digging up buried nuts out of the snow and chasing each other around the trees. While I ate my salad, Charlie worked herself into a frenzy watching them. She was making me a little nervous.
I put on her hiking harness, attached the flexi-leash and prepared myself for her excitement once the car door opened.
I did not prepare myself enough.
She totally bolted over the snowbank I was parked in front of and toward the squirrels.
I went down. Hard. And she dragged me a couple of feet through the snow before she stopped.
And all I could do was laugh! I had never experienced the feeling of being dropped and dragged behind my dog before.
I didn't even think a dog of 42 lbs. could drag a full-size person, but she did. Lesson learned. Although I have to give myself props for not letting go of the leash.
I've always had this fear of Charlie lunging for a squirrel and running out into traffic because I couldn't hold onto the leash. Now I have the satisfaction of knowing I can hang on!
With snow shoved up both sleeves of my coat, down both boots and my jeans completely coated in snow, I decided to put Charlie back in the car and abandon plans for our second walk. I knew I would be too wet/cold to stay outside much longer. Plus I didn't want to take a chance of her repeating this scene again; there were plenty of squirrels out in the park today! As I got in the car, I glanced back at the spot where she dragged me and giggled to myself again, thankful that no one was around to witness this truly embarrassing event.
I laughed in the car all the way home, still in disbelief over what had just happened. And I laughed harder when I got home and found snow in both front pockets of my jeans.
She got me good today, little shit.