I suppose even fun is relative... "walkies" with the dogs was such a fiasco tonight I had to give up and laugh... and also swear never to walk them together before the next return of Haley's Comet!

The participants:

Neko, 2yr old male who was ill for a week and hadn't been on a walk for two weeks, now with energy to burn.

Rita, 11 week pup who has gone to the store and office on a leash, but never on a proper walk, always has energy to burn.

Me, recently feeling twice my age due to one sick dog and a pup that sleeps only 5 hrs a night!

Oh yeah, and this "mutt-n-jeff" pair have never walked together. And so, like a drunk ordering another round, I know I can handle it? Yah, sure... But just to even the score and slow him down a bit, I put a light pack on Neko.

By the time I get the door locked, I've had to untangle myself 3 times from the bouncing dog and circling pup. I make it to the end of the drive only by dancing in circles while I walk... still have to untangle the dogs twice. Give up? Ha! Not this early in the walk!

I decide holding one leash is a better idea and slip Neko's leash through Rita's. Yep, end of her leash slips down to his collar giving them more room to tangle! Go back to the dancing owner method. We finally get to Neko's favorite "pee-tree". He lifts his leg, she runs under his belly to see what's what... Don't think I need to paint this picture any further.

Finally, a brainstorm (no pun intended)! I hook her leash to a pack clip over Neko's withers, run it down the pack and through a ring at the back. Rita now has only 3 ft of leash (just short of total entanglement)... things go a little smoother. Smoother is NOT necessarily better, however. Rita is happy to "follow" along, but attacks Neko after being "bungeed" once too often. He walks faster, she takes a flying leap for his neck, he flips her with a head toss... we drag Rita about a foot!  Lesson learned: don't attack Neko while we're moving... wait 'til he stops & sniffs. This results in a slow trot the remaining half block to the park. She keeps pace well and stays even with his shoulder... ahh, success at last?

Rita decides to walk in front at all costs. Now Neko has Rita pulling him forward by the rear of his pack (or his REAR, if her leash slips around his tail) and me holding him back. He's disgusted at "missing" his favorite "spots"... huffs & snorts at every missed opportunity... We pass a parked car where I don't see anyone... until Neko wants to poke his head in the window. (The seats were reclined and I didn't ask, ok?) We get a big silly grin from the driver... apparently whatever they are doing is not half as entertaining as the three of us performing our "dogs & human" show.

On our exit from the park... Neko and I hear the jangle of dog tags. Sounds like his dreaded nemesis is loose again! (Neko HATES this dog with a passion!) Rita is caught in the wirlly-dance as Neko tries to see him. Once again.. total entanglement! The second I get them untangled AND headed in the right direction, it's back to trotting... I want some distance!

Finally heading back Neko is now lagging behind Rita and myself, obviously putting off getting home. Rita seems to know where we are headed and is very definitely out in front pulling. Occasionally she drops back to make a quick "snarf" at Neko. I think she is irritated that he is holding us up?

The "up" side of all this? We survived my stupidity. They were a little more reserved at dinner... and who knows... Rita may finally sleep a little later in the AM!

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