She runs. From the very beginning she wants nothing more than to run like a race horse. Once in Edwin Warner Park I changed out her collar and forgot to switch the leash so when I dropped the harness from her body, the leash fell to the ground with it. She was off like a bolt of lightning. When she looked back after what seemed like ages, I was holding her tennis ball. I bounced it once on the ground and she ran to me with exactly the same enthusiasm.
When we go to the dog park, or rather when we did go to the dog park, she goes around and asks all the dogs - starting with the largest ones, if they want to chase her and if none of them accept her offer well, she runs without them. She runs so fast and with so much conviction that everyone, humans and dogs, do what I like to call the dog park pirouette. They can't take their eyes off of her. I remember watching a Jack Russell Terrier run the middle school soccer field once. I'd seen these dogs race, jumping hay bales along the way but I hadn't seen one run full out. It was incredible much the same way it is when Stella does it. She's focused, on what I'm not quite sure. Maybe it's the turbo power of her own physique.
Having not been on a walk for close to four weeks now, for the first time ever, Stella bolted out the front door today (no jumping or running says the doctor; she could easily injure the newly minted knee). She made two laps around the front yard, one around the patio and one last one around the yard. Both of us got a free shot of adrenaline. I skinned my knee but hers seems to be working beautifully.
This shot was taken the last of September, on the farm where my friend Beverly lives. She did a little cow-inspired running that day.