Emma is our 3 ½ year old Border Collie Mix. We have had her for exactly 3 years and yesterday was her very first “Off Leash Dog Park” experience. We have talked about taking her for some time now and yesterday we just decided that it was a nice cool “fallish” kind of day and we should stop talking about it and just do it……so we did. 🙂
Emma loves going for car rides in fact she is a great little traveler so yesterday she hoped into the back seat of our car in great anticipation of what adventure might lie before her. Little did she know it was going to be so awesome.
As soon as we parked outside the fenced off area Emma started barking her fool head off because she is a very brave defender of her people from inside a vehicle, not quite as brave when face to face with the supposed danger…. of other dogs and people.
Once inside the gates we took off her leash and moved forward. Emma was immediately greeted by several of the “regulars” and was welcomed into their “sandbox” to play. It reminded me of Erika when she was 5 years old and would go out to play with the neighborhood kids, she never knew the other kids names but always came home and told us she made new friends in the sandbox.
After the warm welcome (butt sniffing) was taken care of Emma was off to explore on her own and fairly quickly figured out that most of these dogs like to be chased around (not like our nearly 10 year old Lab Cody who prefers to be left alone). However some of them gave up playing with her because she was too fast for them.
Emma’s herding instincts went into action when several of her new friends started running around out of control, she barked and yipped and ran around doing everything in her power to get those unruly dogs into one spot together. Most of them just looked at her and walked away, thinking she was too bossy, and too fast to play with.
Emma seemed to make one friend in particular that she didn’t stray too far from, Lucy. Lucy seemed to be a pro at the whole dog park thing and didn’t mind showing Emma the ropes.
About 45 minutes into her play time, Emma sat down on the ground and just looked at us as if to ask if she could please go home and take a nap, as all this running around had tired a poor little pup completely out. She was quite happy to get back into the car and lie down on the back seat and close her eyes and nap most of the way home.
We think we will try to take Emma back to the “sandbox” on a regular basis now since her first experience was such a success, and see what new friends she can make next time. 🙂