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Ssshhhhhhh....Don't tell!

I violated more laws in two hours today than I have in...well, i don't know, probably not that long. But the point is, momma threw caution to the wind and took Ella to Central Park!!!

Now, look, I went into this with the best of intentions. I told myself I was going to carry her from my apartment to a "secluded" spot in the park where not that many people or pups walk by, and we'd just stay on the leash and bounce around a bit, then head straight back home. I swear that was the plan. But, you know what they say about the best laid plans. And oh these plans most definitely went awry. But boy was it fun!!

I let Ella touch ground for the first time behind The Met. It snowed a couple of days ago, so she immediately went over to the snow to check that out. Here she is, just innocently standing around and looking cute...

Then, trouble. A French woman and her terrier mix came over. (As an aside, I should state for the record that I made a point of telling any dog owners up front that Ella was awaiting her shots to make sure that their pups were up-to-date and that they didn't guarantees, i know, but honestly i'm more worried about the bacteria in the mud puddles than i am about a rabid dog infecting Ella). Anyway, the woman was very nice but almost immediately suggested taking both of them off-leash and letting them run in a little enclosed snowy area next to the museum. I must admit, I suddenly felt like a teenager being peer-pressured to cut class. In Central Park, dogs can only be off-leash in the wee hours of the morning or late at night...but aside from those 'silly rules', this is only Ella's first day outside! And now you want me to take her off the leash already? Well ok, you don't have to ask me twice! Haha...well, look, judge me all you want but I'm so glad I did because look at what fun she had!

Shortly after her romp through the snow, she had another exciting encounter with a fellow Golden Retriever named Duke! Duke is 3 years old, and his mom and dad were very nice. I hope to run into them again because I think Duke would make a great role model for Ella. He was patient as could be, letting her run around and sniff him. She even got Duke down on the ground on his back in a submissive stance! We all had a laugh about that because I told them Ella and I have been fighting it out for who will be alpha female of the I'm not surprised she had that effect on Duke, this 75+ pound adult male!

Shortly after Duke left, a Saint Bernard approached! (If you aren't amazed yet by the pups in Central Park, you should be...this place is so fantastic, and a haven for pups and their owners alike!) The owner didn't bring him close, but they both noticed each other right away. Here's a shot of Ella sitting at attention and looking at him attentively from afar...

Now here's a shot a minute later when a bird lands nearby to the right. Bird trumps Saint Bernard any day for a Golden Retriever!!

Well, after all that, I eventually managed to get her out of the park, after being stopped every few feet by passers-by who couldn't resist asking to pet her. I carried my muddy and pooped-out little one home and immediately stuck her in the bathtub. It's a shame, really, that we had to end such a great morning on this note because she still hasn't forgiven me.

Fortunately she's asleep now, and hopefully she's having wonderful dreams about running through the snow, chasing after squirrels and pigeons, and making new canine friends so that when she wakes up, the torture of the bathtub will be a distant memory and she'll be ready to hit the park for some more fun :-)

Strohm said...
February 28, 2008 at 3:44 PM  

The greatest exposure risk is actually to parasites that are transmitted via feces. As long as she interacts with adult dogs that have been cleared of parasties, and Ella has as well, there is little risk of her catching anything.

You will reallly enjoy the dog parks. :)

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