Miles and Mutts is moving on up in more ways than one.
First, the distance hounds have a new personal distance records. Xena and Athena each ran 7 miles on the last group run. They also easily found the treats left for them as well.
Second, the dogs have a new ride to allow more dogs and runners to come to the group runs. The initial ride over was a bit shaky but tired, happy dogs made for a pleasant and quiet ride back. What a quick transformation with a bit of exercise.
Third, with room for more dogs, more dogs need tested out and added to the running pack. We started this week with two strong, energetic boys. Lucky and Rafiki were both handfuls to start but each found their magic of the mile spot during our test run. With Lucky, it took about one mile and then he settled in pace right by my side. Rafiki took a little longer but hit his stride as well. Both enjoyed some loving post-run which was actually possible since they were calm and relaxed after their run.
In trying to explain the concept of Miles and Mutts to others, I often use the angle that running with a shelter dog can help an individual just as much as it can help a dog. While the dogs need the exercise, if someone is not completely committed to a regular, exercise program, sometimes having a buddy to hold them accountable is all that is needed. Knowing a dog is waiting may be enough for a person to make that choice to show up and commit to running.
We’ve been doing this consistently enough that repeat dogs, like Trinket, are picking up on the routine as well. They know what is happening when they get picked up Sunday mornings.
New dogs in the mix, like Roscoe, start out a little unsure for their first car ride and run.
All of the people currently running are pretty seasoned so they don’t really need the extra commitment to get in the exercise, however, a trend is still developing that keeps people showing up each and every time. Relationships are forming between runners and dogs.
Sometimes circumstances do not allow a person to have a dog…or another dog…at the present time. They can certainly still run with one and know they just made that dog’s day!
Sometimes circumstances do work out. A relationship may form.
And, a sweet dog finds a wonderful family…and home…full of runners.