Thursday, September 9, 2010

Cool Morning and Dog Pack

The promised cool down arrived with low clouds and mist. After days of heat and low humidity, I was giddy in our new surroundings.
I slowed our pace, not wanting to miss any of the rare summer scene. Kona was busy following all sorts of smells. I feel like moisture brings out more scents, as Kona's noses is always more active in misty weather.

With tracks to follow, Kona wasn't thrilled about stopping to take pictures, but I managed to get one.
As the trail winded eastward, we got a view of the cloud-cloaked foothills.
We started our run later than usual, so we ran into more people on the trail. While not overwhelmed, Kona was visibly more nervous. I tried to interrupt her hypervigilance by encouraging her to explore up a foxtail-free slope. She hopped up the hill with enthusiasm, but by the looks of this picture, I'm not sure if she was any less worried.
Our run continued on a similar theme. I took pictures and Kona shifted from looking nervous to following animal tracks with gusto.

We ran into a small dog pack that I try hard to avoid. While the dogs aren't aggressive, their greeting skills don't go off well with Kona. One of the dogs immediately puts his head over Kona's shoulders and the other will run at us barking. The third approaches Koan with her head low, glaring straight at Kona. While Kona has decent dog skills, she does not try to diffuse tense situations and stands her ground when challenged. You could imagine how Kona's personality would not match well with this nervous, status seeking pack. Kona rarely gets snarky with other dogs, but she will with these three (and rightfully so, I believe).

I was gratefully that I was able to navigate around the pack without any of the dogs approaching. While we made it through the situation fine, I felt tense as we continued up the hill. Kona on the other hand was immediately over the encounter. She shakes off tense dog situations immediately. I tried to take her cue to chill.

I love it when Kona Dog reminds *me* to relax. Besides, the morning was too welcoming to hold extra worry.

6 comments:

Sara said...

A bit of role reversal? Kona saying, "relax, it's over, we survived the dog pack!" That's great. Funny how our dogs can help remind us to live in the moment.

The mist and clouds are gorgeous. Glad to hear you've got some cooler temps back. I think it puts everyone, even our dogs , in a better mood!

Life with 5 dogs said...

Sometimes I feel the same way as you did with Kona, When I have a non-leashed dog pack approaching. I seem to tease up and get nervous, as long as I keep moving Mr Grover seems to continue on without to much fuss.

Priscilla said...

I would be scared of a non-leashed dog pack no matter how non scary the dogs are because you never know.
Good job Kona for telling your mom to chill out!

Two Pitties in the City said...

It is so frustrating when they're off-leash, especially when they're not confident or have good dog manners. It sounds like Kona knew what she was doing. I love that second photo.

Kathy said...

I hate running into off leash dogs, you never know what their skills....I love that picture of the fluffy clouds, all the pictures have such a peacful glow to them...

Barb said...

What beautiful end-of-summer shoots! I especially love the mist foothills one. Kona is teaching you a good skill - shake it off...