Well, aside from being VERY loosely organized (to the point of us almost not staying around long enough to meet anyone at all), it was a great day yesterday. Neil, Beth, and Chloe came along which made it lots more fun because I had help so Sadie could come too! We scoped out the park…there is good lake access but the immediate park area there is heavily used…I think I will continue to go back and explore farther along the trails out there for a bit more secluded/less used area.
The meet-up was supposed to be for 10am…it was after 11 and we were just getting ready to head out when one of the folks found us and said a couple other people were on their way to find us too. It was a labrador retriever group which was fun…the most amusing part of the whole thing were watching people's jaws drop when they learned that Marly is only 8 and a half months old. She was the largest dog there – looking to be even larger than the only male who was full grown a (I think) 4 years old. Louie…he was an adorable chocolate lab. He little sister was some sort of a black lab mix…a tiny thing. We called her the bonsai lab. Heh. Then there was Raven, the nine month old black lab. Raven was very lean – I asked her owner about it and she said it was because her husband did not want to have an overweight lab. Which I totally understand, but this pup was SO lean and still so young. It worried me some. Sadie and Marly rounded out the group. We let Marly off-leash for a bit with Louie and Raven to go swim. It was her first time in any sort of open water – I have never seen a happier pup! Even Sadie decided she liked these dogs and that she wanted to play with them in the water, but she doesn't like to actually swim so she mostly splashed around near shore and got super-duper muddy.
My only gripe about the meet-up (aside from the poor planning) is that the other two dogs who were off-leash kept running over and bothering people who were not in our group. There are leash laws since it is a state park…neither one of the owners bothered to leash up their dogs or even really go after them, even after repeated times of bothering these folks. They just stood there calling to them – obviously the respective dogs were paying NO attention to them. I dislike that because that is what gives dog owners and dogs such a bad name. Sure these dogs were harmless, but they were wet and big and wanting to play and other people don't need to be bothered by that. The way I see it, if they wanted to play with big, wet dogs they would either have one of their own there and already be doing that, or come over and ask to play with us all. I leashed Marly up the first time she ran off…and Neil and Beth both helped me out in corralling her before she got too pesky with the other people there at the park.
I did get some flexi-leashes so that next time even if they have to stay leashed up, they will still have some running/swimming room without me having to join them in the cold, muddy water.
Everyone was nice enough, but I am not sure if we will bother giving this group another shot or not. I guess I didn't realize just how much it really bothered me – the not controlling/leashing their dogs – until I started writing this.
Next weekend is Bark in the Park…one of the big Charlotte parks is opening a new off-leash dog park within it. I think we might go check it out.
Today I mowed the scary jungle that I call my yard. Tomorrow I will break out the weed-whacker and edge everything. I borrowed my neighbor's blade-whacker too, so I can start to work on hacking down some of the overgrowth on the hill-side. I would like to at least get it to where you can't really see any of the tall weeds when you are standing out on the patio. It will make the whole yard look much neater.