Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Unleashed

Ever since our confrontations with The Shepherds I've been reluctant to let Duncan roam the park off-leash. Most days I'd take his ball or we'd find a stick and toss them across the fields, running back and forth retrieving them. Even when Duncan grew bored with the games he danced and scampered around me, grabbing my wrist in his mouth and leading me around like he does when he gets excited. But since I reminded the caretakers of the two German Shepherds that Clement Park is a leash park, I've made a conscious decision to keep Duncan leashed at all times. After all, no one likes to be accused of being a hypocrite, or worse, feeling like one all on your own.

But tonight, after a long day at work, we walked over to the park and because no one was around, I let go of his leash, threw my guard stick as far as I could and watched as Duncan chased after it. He's been rather sluggish the last few days and I've been concerned that he was suffering the same winter blues I've been experiencing, but the moment he stretched his legs and ran across the field my fears dissipated. Everything about him changed, his face lit up and he could not help but smile as we ran circles around one another, playing keep away with the stick. Duncan leapt high, rolled onto his back and groaned loudly and he stretched his body into one long, thin straight line, his beaming face at one end, his thumping tail at the other. He thrashed about wildly then jumped up and did it all again. I have not seen him this way in weeks and as tired as I was I couldn't help but feel my own spirit lifted. Soon I was rolling around with him, groaning just as loudly.

And when The Shepherds appeared on the far side of the baseball field, I simply called Duncan to me, grabbed the leash and watched as they did the same. We seem to have reached some sort of peaceful understanding and mutual respect. They leave us alone and I get to be a dog with Duncan. Who could ask for more?

1 comment:

Ruth said...

Yay for puppy therapy!