Monday, July 17, 2017

Load 'em up!

When we take dogs for a walk at SPK in the summer the process starts with the question: Who? As in, who is going today? Since we have quite a few dogs that want to go, the selection is always challenging. We have a spreadsheet (similar to the exercise training spreadsheet for winter training) that records on a day to day basis who goes on a walk, who is in a play pen or who trots around the yard while the humans do chores.

The dog walks usually involve 5 to 8 dogs. First we load the dogs up in the Dog Hauling trailer. There is a reason behind hauling dogs away from the property in order to walk. We can walk directly from our yard, but towards the end of the return leg every sled dog in the world has the "race to the barn" mentality. No matter how good of shape Aliy is in at the time... she can not keep up with a half dozen racing sled dogs! That would result in 5 to 8 dogs running around the yard, ransacking the dog room, visiting dog neighbors, flirting at the Heat Pen or sitting on the front porch of the main house. Worse than that it would require Aliy to sprint the last 1/4 mile of a previously relaxing dog walk in order to try and reach the property along with the dogs. To heck with that! Interestingly, the dogs still have the "race to the barn" mentality but it ends wherever we park the dog hauler... not at the kennel.

The load up is simple. We drive the ATV and trailer into the yard and park with the doors of the hauler open. The older dogs are pros and as soon as they leave their houses they sprint to the trailer and jump in. Here Outlaw's easy load up:



The younger dogs are still learning. Here you can see Gold isn't quite sure about climbing onboard. But once they jump into the hauler and find a handful of dog biscuits, the whole experience takes on a positive light!









The ride in the trailer depends on where the dog walk begins. The near walk begins only a mile from the kennel. The farthest we will travel in the trailer before we 'release the hounds' is about 2 1/2 miles. Some dogs ride quietly whereas other dogs are loud mouths: Willie, Bronze, Jefe and Rodney (of course!)

9 comments:

Margaret said...

This is the best ever post!!! Thanks so much!!!

What a hoot!!! Is the bicycle there to race them back t6oi the barn?

These guys are so cute!!!

Thanks again!!!

A-town's Becky said...

Awesome!
Always making it fun.
I bet Gold jumps right in, once he realizes the fantastic hike that awaits.
:-)

Nessmuk said...

I absoutely loved loading up the dogs when I visited back in May....the yard was full of excitment as the lucky dogs got their turn for a ride and a run! On my last day it was muddy, and when we returned to the Kennel Aliy would drive the ATV through the yard and it was my job to release the right dog from the trailer to their house...it was kinda like my "final exam", and I was proud of the fact I got them all right....even Bean versus Sanka! I was covered with mud but I had a big smile on my face...the dogs were such a joy to be around! What a way to end my 5 day visit at SPK! Thanks for the post and the memories!

Donna Willette said...

Wow, When did Gold become such a huge SPK sled dog. No wonder you need arms of steel to wrangle a team down the trail. Love Aliy's and Gold's smile in the before insertion picture. Have fun with the treats and running wild. Woof! Woof! Way to go SPK.

Heidi Phillips said...

Oh to be a bird in the trees watching the antics of dogs being dogs!! And probably a human laughing and shaking her head a lot.... what fun!!

Anonymous said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY number one coming up to the Olympic Litter!!!

WOOF WOOF WOOF!!!

Awesome going, Mom and Pop, Quito and Clyde!!!

Best,

Margaret

Kathy said...

This is super cool post! Can't believe the well behaved dogs would
ransack the dog room. Glad to see Willie is still at SPK.
Thanks for the info! And also Happy Birthday--Gold, Prata & Bronze!

Dawn Engler said...

What great fun. Need to do what Nessmuk did, and learn how to help out when we finally get to visit!!

Linda Toth said...

Nice post and I really enjoyed Nessmuk's joy at having participated.

I got a laugh out of the loud mouths - each dog takes to things differently, don't they?

L