Poodle Firsts: First Time at the Dog Park, First Walk

 Huxtable, the parti poodle, first day at the park

I couldn't hold my horses when it came to being able to take Huxtable to the park. But of course I had to patiently wait until he was able to get his last set of boosters and most importantly rabies shot (I also got him microchipped at the same time). 

That next morning, I put on his leash, got his "baby bag" and headed to the park. This was also sort of our first official walk. Headed there I must say-- my little guy was everywhere, he sorta didn't know what to do, or what side to be on. Huxtable is very very cognizant of surfaces and surface changes. So on our walk he would stop about 3-5 feet before every surface change-- road, to smooth concrete, to cobble stone, to sewer tops, to dusty dirt, to grass, to rough looking concrete. At first I didn't realize what was going on, I thought he was just being stubborn.  Until I realized he would stop when we were approaching sewer tops, then it all clicked for me. My way of dealing with this was just leading him around it (when it came to sewer tops), and encouraging him through it when it came to surface changes. When I did this,  he just happily continued on. 

He continued to switch sides all the way through the park and to the dog park, though he mainly stayed to the right of me. His pace was also a bit lackluster, and he tried to stay behind me most of the time... I guess he was following the "pack leader", wanting me to safely lead him through this new place. 

Huxtable making friends

In the dog park he did relatively good. He started off a bit shy, and was overwhelmed by the other dogs. Within 10 minutes he was branching out, within 15 he was running around on his own, then about 30 minutes in he interacted with the other dogs more, and then about 45 minutes in he was playing with the other dogs trying to get all the dogs to chase him. (Chase has always been his favorite game.) 

Huxtable running around, and around, and around, lol... look at him go!

We left after being there about an hour or so, and chilled out in a green space where baby Huxtable ran around even more. That's where he also caught the attention of more people and dogs, so we made even more friends big and small...

Huxtable with long-haired Chihuahua and Airedale Terrier 

The most impressive thing about the whole day was his attitude and walk on the way back... it was perfect.  Huxtable perfectly walked right next to me on the way back, head held high, his little feet quickly moving at pace, yanno the typical confident toy poodle walk. I couldn't believe my little poodle man got in down pact after just one go, lol! This might be typical, but I see and have read so many stories about people's dog walking them, or seeing and hearing dogs that just generally walk too fast and act wild when on walks. So it was nice to see that I wouldn't have that problem. 

All in all it was a great first day at the park. It started off a bit rough, but ended on a high note. I couldn't wait to take him again. 

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