Day 2 of the up early plan for 2013. It’s very quiet. The dogs have been on their walk. Therefore, so have I.
When I started this, I knew getting back to spending time with the dogs would be important. It had been more than six weeks since they had been on a regular routine of walking. I figured that getting back to the basic of the dog walk would be easy. After all, I remembered it all — so should they.
Chopper is a middle age dog. Routine is a basic thing for him. He gets it. Follows the rules. Knows how to do the walk.
Hank . . . not so much.
Hank is much younger. Out of sight, out mind. Out of walking routine . . . you get the picture. He’s been a handful. My mind remembers easily what he is supposed to do. Hank’s is slow on the recollection part.
It’s made for some stressful times on walks with frustration and tension taking the lead. I’m having to be very patient. No, rather I’m having to work very hard at being patient.
This morning, I realized that Hank may be actually being patient with me. You see, I realized today that I need to be using these walks to train myself. I was reliving parts of my day during these walks (and on the treadmill, too.) My frustration with certain aspects on my day was being transferred to Hank. Yes, he doesn’t follow commands right and still pulls a bit. But, that all starts with me. If I can’t be calm and assertive, he can’t be either.
It all starts with me and my stress. Thank goodness for morning walks to alleviate that. While I probably don’t have the level of stress others do, I do transfer that to others by my actions, behaviors, and my words.
So, today, I focus on that — my actions, behaviors, and words.