Monday, November 10, 2014

Family (and Friends) Trip to Red Rock

The whole family and a few friends took a trip out to Red Rock for a hike the other day.  I have some great pictures, and we had a great time, but first I wanted to say a few things about hiking in places where there are a lot of other off leash dogs.

Now this particular trail was not actually in Red Rock national recreation area.  It was on BLM land, where there is no leash law, although this particular hike is a lot busier than any other BLM land area that I ever frequent.  I always keep Kerri on a leash because of hawks but I let Copley make his own way and the same is true for the other dogs we were with.  Most people on the trail had off leash dogs, but if we saw people coming we would call our dogs to us and leash them till we all passed each other.  Here is where it gets tricky for Copley.  He is a friendly dog but has gotten less and less tolerant of other dogs getting in his face as he gets older.  Nothing bad, but he just avoids situations where high energy dogs are in his face now, but if he is forced he may growl.  If everything is loose and off leash he smells a butt first and all is fine, but in these situations without fail the other owner is holding their dog back on the end of a tight leash with their dog flailing their front feet at Copley, so I just avoid greeting people's dogs with Copley and we move on.  Not because he is going to start a dog fight but because he doesn't like it.  Not all dogs love all situations and not all dogs need to be forced into situations they don't like.

So here is my predicament.  Copley would be 100% fine off leash where he could circle around back and sniff the other dog, or at least where he could take on the situation or not.  It is the smush together of dogs on the end of tight leashes in a small space that makes him uncomfortable and he will occasionally growl, but typically I just pick him up.  That works for me most of the time as long as the other dogs we are meeting are not totally out of their owners control.  I COULD just keep on going and call Copley to me without leashing him and we would have much more positive experiences.  The problem with that is I think it is kinda rude.  I thought that etiquette in an off leash area was that you leash everybody when passing, and although many people don't do that I feel like I need to be the good example and do it myself.  Maybe I should throw etiquitte to the wind and just do what I want- or perhaps only hike on remote BLM land where I will never run into another human or canine.  

While that is pondered take a look at some more picture from our fun hike!

 Kerrigan climbs "Mt. Osprey"

 On the Trail

There are burrows in this picture if you look really close.  Try clicking on it- it's like where's waldo wilderness style.

Have a great week everybody!