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We can't travel, but we can walk our dogs

In Spain, where residents can only go for a walk if they are accompanying their dog, things have apparently gotten a little out of hand. People are lending (and, in mercenary cases, renting) their dogs to pet-less neighbors and friends desperate for fresh air and exercise. One enterprising but foolish fellow put a leash on a stuffed animal...and didn't get away with it.

Where I live, there is a coastal path that stretches for miles. At any time of the day, dogs are walking, running beside bikes, or towing skate boards. Some are riding in baby carriages or slings. Others, forgetting in the heat of the moment that they are not allowed on the beach, are showing those pigeons who is boss. Whatever their mode of movement, the pups seem delighted to be out and about with their human/s.

To us, this is the covid-19 crisis, to canines, it's the Best (wag). Time (wag, wag). Ever (wag, wag, wag).

Fortunately, leashes are several feet long, allowing dog walkers to chat with other dog walkers, and still observe the social distancing rule. While canine noses and butts mingle, pet parents exchange pleasantries and, in connecting, remember that we are all in this together. Everyone parts feeling a little better.

When this crisis is over, let's remember the lesson of the unhurried dog walk. Let's take our cue from Sinbad, Dexter, Wincie, Joey, Soxie and Hazel; tether yourself to someone you love, put one foot in front of the other, take deep breaths, and greet everybody you encounter as if they were a long lost friend (except for pigeons).


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