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249 Dog Tales 2010-07-02

Jake with his gentle leader collar

While returning to Loveland Pass from our hike of Grizzly Peak, a woman was walking a good distance in front of us with two big black dogs. I really did not know what breed they were; but they were big and had a lot of energy. The dogs so enjoyed the hike as they romped along the trail and in the snow.

Back at the Pass, the woman came over to talk to us. She wanted to know about the trail to Grizzly Peak. She had walked part of the trail but was saying the dogs were just too much work for her to go any further.

That statement opened a new topic of conversation: dogs. We miss our dog, Jake and happily jumped in to a discussion of the trade secrets of dog ownership.

Oh, they are pulling? Well then, have you tried a Gentle Leader? The Gentle Leader changed our dog's walking habits. It does not hurt him at all and you can walk him using just one finger. On and on we went discussing how to use the collar.

Your dog is hurting your arm? Well ours did too! We made a shock corded leash out of webbing. Then we explained how to make it and how it worked.

The woman then went on about how much her dogs loved to romp. We shared stories, and then more stories. We shared even more stories of climbing 14ers with dogs.

It was a fun conversation. We learned and we shared. Dogs are fun to have in the mountains but they are a lot of work. We explained how last summer it almost required twice as much effort to take the dog along on the trail than not.

Don't ask grandparents about their grand children or dog owners about their dogs unless you want to hear a whole ear full. We love to talk about Jake, just ask us.

Note: The 14ers.org's kiosk at Grays Trailhead stated dogs should be under control to keep from harming wildlife. They also warned owners to bring water for their dog and about paw injuries. And finally gave advise to all dog owners, "be prepared, don't put your dog or rescuers at risk."

While we were waiting out a storm at the trailhead, a small dog came limping back to the parking area. Owners are responsible for their dogs well being. It is more work to control your dog, but it is worth all of the effort. Ask Jake.

Happy dog trails.

Other dog articles... The Dilemma with Jake


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