Today marked Freya’s first big walk. We took her to Frensham Little Pond…along with 30,000 other people.
It was a glorious, if overly hot, day so we decided to wait until late in the day to set off. We thought it would be cooler and, perhaps, there’d be fewer people. It certainly was cooler. The population at Frensham Little Pond, however, was excessive.
I don’t think we’ve ever seen so many people. They were swimming, screeching, running around and, generally, being like a summer crowd of Brits at Bondi. You’d think they’d never seen water before. Mind you, it was nice to see the normally risk averse English, letting their kids swim without the presence of a lifeguard. (I know this is a major concern with most parents in this country. In Australia we just teach the kids to swim really well and avoid sharks.)
It would be fair to say that Freya thoroughly enjoyed herself. She was almost universally admired and cuddled and fussed over.
I say ‘almost’ because we passed a group of about five adults who completely ignored her even though she trotted up to them for a pat. It’s not that it bothers me one way or the other but when I seem to spend most of my time with Freya explaining to people what she is, how old and where she’s from, I get a surprise when she’s ignored.
The most memorable meeting has to be the woman with the magical power over dogs. Apparently, because she works with disabled children, dogs automatically go to her to be fussed over. It’s her caring nature that dogs can sense…apparently. Now I’m the first person to insist that dogs can show a seemingly high level of intelligence at times but it’s ridiculous to assume they have some strange form of wolf ESP. Also, knowing dogs, if they spot some sort of weakness in you, they’ll exploit it for all it’s worth.
Of course, what we consider intelligence is merely what we’ve taught them. Dogs are very easily trained which is why they were domesticated so successfully so many millenia ago.
As evidence against dogs being very smart, I might mention the Leg Licking Dog we met. The dog’s owner was very careful to give us, and anyone else near us, fair warning about the dogs strange habits. This would explain why she had it on a lead. The girl in the bikini bottoms steered well clear.
Still, enough of that. We had a lovely walk around the Little Pond with Emma getting lovely muddy legs…
…Day-z showing that she still jump onto a high narrow wooden seat…
…and Freya learning to fly like a baby elephant.
Freya has an amazing amount of energy for such a young dog. While she tends to collapse in a heap, it doesn’t happen until she’s well and truly run and jumped and played with as much abandon as possible. She wrestles with Emma to a frightening degree. We sometimes think Emma is going too far but then Freya just leaps at her and tries to pin her down. She does this while growling like a gremlin. (If you want to know what a gremlin puppy cross sounds like, there’s a video of it on Flickr.)
While I’m not a big fan of crowds when we’re out walking (or at any other time, really), the crowds didn’t bother me that much and there were huge swathes of time that Freya could actually walk and run around. We discovered that Freya hunts out humans. Unlike Emma, she’ll find as many of them as possible and attempt to make friends with them. So, Freya clearly didn’t mind the crowds.
And, finally, for Bob. Just to prove people can Mess About in Boats at Frensham Little Pond.