In or Out

I own a home with a fenced yard. One of the selling points was the fenced yard.  I got it so I could let the dogs out.

I have a little Whippet who likes to bask in the sun. The Saluki likes to  keep an eye on the yard and see if any squirrels are trespassing. In his younger days, he’d fly down the stairs—and never bark. That’s the nice thing about Salukis—they don’t waste energy.  Now, he is too old and  frail.  He is unsure on the stairs, especially at night.  But he still enjoys  sniffing around & watching what goes on.

I’ve always had dogs that would spend the warm weather in and out, up and down the stairs.  I remember  over a decade ago, with another Saluki.  I was watching TV, and he ran past the doorway carrying what I thought was a fur hat.  It took me a few minutes.  I mean, where did he find a fur hat out in the yard on a summer night?

It was not a fur hat, it was an opossum.  Big mess. Lots of fleas.

I’d ask  Bebop, the Whippet, if he wanted to go out on a winter day.  He’d put his head down, narrow his round eyes into slits and put his ears back, stretching his neck out, but not move a foot. He did not want to go out, too cold.  In fact, for a couple of years,  I often could not get the dogs out after  8 p.m. on a cold night…but then, of course, they’d get up early, because they had to pee, so then I insisted they go out between  9 and 10 at night.

I can’t imagine living with dogs & not having a balcony, yard, or patio where you can just let them out to sit.  Dogs just  love being in the fresh air. They can smell so many things we can’t, and it’s a real pleasure to them.  It’s 1 reason I really don’t like the totally indoor ‘kennels’ & daycare facilities that are springing up around the large urban areas.

I know, it’s a modern world, and dogs don’t ‘need’ to go out, and they can get exercise all sorts of ways, but if your first thought about getting a dog is not how you are going to  exercise the dog and keep him mentally and physically fit, you are on the wrong path to dog ownership.


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