It has been a couple of months since our Boxer (see above) was put on enforced rest to heal a sprained knee. The other knee was reconstructed two years ago after he blew his ACL (he wasn´t playing football or skiing) and so the good leg has taken a lot of the strain of being an extremely boisterous 40 kg block of muscle. Now we are into rehabilitation. ¨Go gently¨, said the vet, ¨and try and keep him calm”. What a completely pointless piece of advice. We left the house at a flat gallop with me fluttering behind like a flag on the end of a rope. and tugging uselessly on the lead.
Normally Diesel is fairly well behaved with only the occasional bark at other dogs who have the temerity to look his way, and he accepts the lead with good grace. Today, the delight of being able to lift his leg against his favourite trees was too much for him and he rushed down the road making yipping noises of high excitement. It was therefore unfortunate that his nemesis ¨The Golden Retriever¨ was coming up the road in the opposite direction. I had taken the precaution of taking a heavy duty lead (his old one snapped the other day in a cafe when he was approached by an over friendly German Shepherd) and I felt fairly confident that I could drag him past his arch enemy and on to the park. Big mistake.
We both realised at the same moment that he was stronger than I was. To avoid a noisy confrontation, I attempted the age old trick of running quickly twice round the nearest lamp post so that the lead would be wrapped around a solid anchor and the offending dog could saunter past undisturbed. Unfortunately, for the first time ever, Diesel kept up, trotting nimbly beside me, so after two revolutions of the post I was extremely dizzy and he was all set to tell the Retriever exactly what he thought of him. As luck would have it, at that moment a squirrel shot out of the hedge in front of us and bounded past the Golden Retriever and down the road. Both dog’s eyes bulged with excitement (think ¨UP¨) and the mortal ememies set off in hot pursuit, with me and the Retriever’s owner (an extremely small elderly woman) being towed along behind. Fairly quickly my lead broke again but the elderly lady wasn’t so lucky and was dragged up the hill shrieking.
As we all careered up the road, the dogs had obviously decided to put their differences aside in pursuit of the squirrel. Luckily, after about 50 metres it evaded them by darting into the garden of an imposing house. The two dogs ground to a halt and grinned at each other with tongues lolling and tails wagging and seemed completely indifferent to my telling off or the old ladies expletives.
In the end we all parted amicably. Diesel got his walk in the park and his knee seems completely recovered inspite of the squirrel chase. Tomorrow I might drive him straight there.