Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Funday - mud baths, friends and trick or treat.

This morning I caught up with a few of my Goldie friends at Waiatarua Reserve. This is an Auckland park of approximately 20 hectares where dogs can run off leash and play in the creeks and ponds apart from one area in the centre which is just for the birds.

My Golden Retriever Club was having a dog walk so we met at the car park.

I got lots of nice pats from this lady in the pink top.

A quick check of who I remember...
and I'm so excited to be there that I'm off the ground literally (I'm the one flying in the centre)
and running circles (in the centre) not knowing which way to go...
What's down there...
whatever my fur-friend is doing it looks fun...
so this is what she was after... I think I'll stand here for a while...
So mum, does my mud bath look suit me?

Then a cool dip in the first pond...
My "alligator look" - I'm the right of this photo below.
A quick drink - mum couldn't believe I'd actually want to drink this stuff!
Two of my friends
Me again standing at the back...
Half way through the walk and I'm happy

Then we were clipped up to our leashes for a while, as the centre of this park is New Zealand's biggest urban wetland (a big stormwater treatment area) where there are all sorts of birds which we are not allowed to retrieve. The path that we follow goes right around this wetland area.

Surely mum could have trusted me with those birds after my last blog post!

Off leash again.
Muddy water and water dogs... that's me on the right

Lots to sniff...
and to run from or to (I'm on the left)

Then the big pond...

Just in case you think we were there alone, our humans followed us round and a couple of black labs even gate-crashed our pond party!

Spring days - the water is warm. What more could I want!

My wet dog look...
and a quick shake dry! 

After the walk the humans had a barbecue in the park. Here are some of my friends in the shade, and just in case you think all us Golden Retrievers look alike the blond ones below aren't me! .

Having a barbecue afterwards was a great idea, as my humans got to woof with other humans and while they were standing around I got given bits of sausage to eat and some clean water!

Then a car ride home and it was time for TRICK OR TREAT only I got both.

Dad called me to the back yard and TRICKED me as he had shampoo and the garden hose.  He got rid of the lovely pond odours from this morning that I so enjoyed.  

However I got TREATED at the same time as mum hand fed me pieces of smoked fish as I was being washed. Smoked fish is one of my favourite treats.

Have a great Sunday, and if you are celebrating Halloween be wary of those tricks!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Can I still call myself a golden retriever?

This morning I had an interesting experience that I would like your words of wisdom about. After breakfast I went out my front door, where I noticed our driveway gates were left open after dad had left for work. This isn’t usually a problem for me, as I’ve learnt to stay inside my boundaries. In fact I have three zones – inside the house (a.k.a my kennel), the whole back garden (fenced off from the front garden) and the front garden (also fenced with a gate to the road). I spend my days wandering between the first two at my leisure, and often follow mum or dad out to the front garden when they are out there.

Anyway this morning when mum opened the front door for me, the gate was open and on my driveway I saw one duck and three large ducklings that had wandered in and were quacking in front of me, tormenting me, waddling around and quacking, quacking, quacking…

What was a boy like me to do? I gave chase. I ran as fast as my legs would carry me. The ducks went everywhere with lots more quacking and wings flapping (even though the young ones couldn’t fly yet). I then heard the loudest “Riley down” command from my mum that I've ever heard. So loud the next door neighbour rushed out of her house to check if I’d finally cornered my nemesis (her white cat that comes through the fences just to tease me and sleep in my garden).

While I was “down” all I could do was watch the ducks as they waddled past me (less than a metre away) up the drive while mum herded them out and closed the gates. When I was finally allowed to get up and go to the gate the biggest duck turned around and walked back towards me to quack at me from the other side of the gate. I’m sure she laughed at me, but then she walked back to her ducklings.

All that was left for me to do was to sniff where they had been, nose to the ground, going round and round and back and forth for ages, but  I think I’ve missed my chance.
You see ever since I have been a puppy I’ve been given duck toys. My breed is breed to retrieve these things, it is in our nature and I figure mum could have helped this morning and shot one for me to make getting my first real duck easier – but she claims she likes ducks and doesn’t own a gun or have a duck licence even though she has a gundog and gave me duck toys. Talk about mixed messsages.

So what do you think - should I have done something different, should I have pretended not to hear her commands, should I have run quicker, crossed the boundary and chased them down the road claiming retrieving was what I’m breed to do (to experience the look on mum’s face when I brought one back), or am I better to lie at mum’s feet while she types this for me and dream of what might have been?


PS Mum was too busy herding ducks and giving me commands to get her camera, so the duck photos of what they looked like are off the web, but the photos of me with my toy duck were taken this morning.