DISTANCE: 8.01 km DURATION: 1:02:23
Angels come in all shapes and sizes. And Leo proved that they also come with varying dispositions. And that isn't to say that Leo is crusty, far from it. He's just far too smart to accept an outing that isn't to his specifications. Is Leo a steady and focused runner? Not exactly. As always, he found too many good things to smell today (and I'm sure he really would have loved to eat that discarded taco). Is he fast? Well, that depends. If he could chase a bunny or that squirrel that seemed to follow us in Roxboro, I'm sure he could be. We squeezed in a few speed intervals, but too many just wasn't what Leo wanted today. Yes, he likes to rest periodically in snowbanks, and stop at trees and hydrants to sniff and investigate. But he's unquestionably an angel to me. Thanks, Leo for brightening my holiday season. The scoop: 1 poop, 9 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.01 km DURATION: 1:05:00
A bit of a fun mixed bag for my friend Leo today. For starters, I absolutely woke Leo up as he gave a good stretch and massive yawn upon my arrival. Undaunted, we started out with a good and steady pace and I think we made our company's name proud; Dog Gone Running, indeed. But I think Leo suggested that the name of the company should change at about the 4k mark to Dog Gone Resting. Doesn't sound too catchy and quite frankly, I'm not sure I would invest a great deal of time in a company like that either. So with a delicious liver treat, I coaxed Leo up from his stretch in the sun. Sensing a pattern, Leo then insisted that we repeat that cycle for the balance of our time together. Apparently the company should be renamed to Dog Gone Snacking. Either way, we achieved my overall mileage target and I'm hoping that Leo enjoyed the running, resting and snacking. The scoop: 2 poops, 8 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.71 km DURATION: 1:04:22
Great to see you again, Leo. I found him in a deep sleep on the couch and he gave the impression that running was the last thing on his mind. So rather than push it, I did leave the auto-pause on Runkeeper so we could keep our reunion on the more relaxing side. But as it turns out, it wasn't really necessary. While Leo did take his typical stops, he resumed his pace reasonably quickly. And on we went like that except for two small moments when he began to look as if he wished he was back on the couch relaxing and contemplating the day. Leo was always quickly swayed back into movement however with a liver treat. Well done, Leo! It didn't take me long to remember how much Leo loves squirrels, bunnies, magpies, and Tim Horton's wrappers. But we also remembered to 'Smile and have a good day'. Great run, Leo. Great to see you again. The scoop: 1 poop, 10 pees.
DISTANCE: 4.89 km DURATION: 47:32
Dear little Leo, what a terrific running partner you are! I’m sorry you got spooked by the skateboard! Yet it seems spiders and skulls don’t phase you at all. You mister are very smart, I learned that when we got a few km in. You would lay down until I would offer you a treat. I get that, I’m pretty treat motivated too. Also I hope you are ok after running into that pole when you went to chase after a squirrel! Silly Boy. I am glad you enjoyed playing with sticks with me and eating the bacon treats I brought you, but when we were in the elevator after the run and I went to give you the last one, you knocked it with your nose causing it to slide under the elevator door and then when you couldn’t understand how it disappeared, you were so disappointed that you let the last one slip away.
Welcome back Leo! It was great to see you again. I've missed you and I've missed how smart you are. Just as your humans warned me, you HATE (yes, all caps are warranted) going into your kennel. Glad to say that happened only once this weekend. You love walks outside and stimulation in the warm sunshine. Also glad to say that we covered that off everyday as the warm weather was far too enticing to pass up. You are still very treat motivated as I noticed that I could get you to come and go as I needed whenever I gently shook the treat jar. Murphy and Leo played a continuous game of 'chase the stuffed pig' this weekend. And when ever that game wrapped up, they would fall asleep wherever it ended - in the kitchen, backyard, or even in the hall. I'm afraid Leo may have a few extra bits of tree sap in his paws as the game also ended once underneath a big fir tree. We had a fairly lazy weekend by human standards, but I think a pretty decent one from the perspective of a dog. Sun. Walk. Play. Sleep. Repeat. Good times. Thanks for coming over, Leo.
Pet Sitter: Sheri
DISTANCE: 8.17 km DURATION: 1:01:21
Well Leo, it's our last run this summer so it's time to celebrate all the things you and I do best. First, of course we had a seemingly endless first kilometre that took far too long to get moving. Now while that doesn't seem like something we should boast about, it is typical for our outings and therefore today Leo, you win. But we also did a fairly decent job of speed intervals down Elbow Drive and Leo allowed me to squeeze in four today. Great gallop, little man. Leo also loves to snack on anything that may be discarded along our route, but we've been so good at avoiding obvious trouble spots and keeping our eyes peeled, that we didn't have to pull any sudden maneuvers to avoid food. Yay, us! Leo, you and I have clocked over 800 kilometres together since January. It's been great having a regular date with a super smart little guy, where we can both get our heads clear and go back to our families refreshed and relaxed. Have a wonderful, peaceful summer with your family Leo. The scoop: 1 poop, and many pees.
DISTANCE: 8.26 km DURATION: 1:03:35
Good afternoon, Mr. Leo. I have to say that I was looking forward to escaping my house full of newly graduated CBE students vibrating with pent-up energy from their school year. And not entirely unlike my kids, Leo and I headed out today taking a symbolic run through an entire school year. We ran one step, one breath, one discarded pizza crust at a time, and when Leo decides to take a pit stop we find ourselves in an entirely different place thinking about how far we've come. Leo and I had tests today; holding his focus while we ran past bunnies, squirrels and birds. Leo did flop down in the grass once; clearly that was recess. But maybe Leo is now out for summer vacation too as he had absolutely no problem zipping into his kennel for a nap, with an well earned treat. The scoop: 1 poop, far too many markings to count.
DISTANCE: 8.51 km DURATION: 1:02:14
This is what a happy dog looks like! And I'm happy to report that Leo had an amazing run today. It was unclear if his vibrant mood was related to Argentina's win in their World Cup game, or if he knew that I was celebrating a second graduate in my house in as many months. Perhaps it was the number of squirrels and birds that lined Leo's run route that seemed as if they were there to celebrate 'the Leo parade'. Leo just had more focus today. So much so, that we pushed our pace along the river in a few speed intervals where Leo enjoyed the switch from trot to gallop. When he was tired, he flopped into the shady grass for a quick scratch and to laugh at the camera. Great work from a very happy Leo. The scoop: 1 poop, 6 pees.
DISTANCE: 7.80 km. DURATION: 1:05:46
Oh, Leo. He was unfortunately having absolutely none of the usual today. The sun was shining, the pavement was hot, and Leo simply wasn't going to run like he does normally. But I'm glad to say that he would take a little bit of running, in measured amounts, of course. It was more like a combination of a light run, a light jog, a bit of a walk, stretch in the shady grass, and repeat. And as long as I accepted that Leo would periodically need a scratch on the belly and a sip of water in the shade, I could at least keep him moving. Maybe I should call it a "wog." Not really a jog, not a walk, but "wog" sounds about right. Oh, and of course, we needed to cool off completely with a stretch in the river. Good times, Leo. Have a relaxing, cool evening. The scoop: 1 poop, 6 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.12 km DURATION: 1:01:02
Five years ago, Leo and I would not have been able to enjoy the perfect running route that we have come to love this year. Five years ago, Calgary was devastated by a massive flood. But rather than dwell on the hardship of that time, today Leo gifted us both with a steady and focused run. Sure, he occasionally pulled up to take in a bevy of spring smells along our route, but for the most part Leo was a steady running machine. I'm so grateful for the resilliency of Calgarians and that our community rallied to help in every way possible. And Leo and I are grateful that we have a river valley that we continue to enjoy every week. A place that was once a source of fear and destruction, is now a place where Leo and I let our troubles go and watch them gently float down the river. We genuinely had a fantastic and relaxing run today. The scoop: 1 poop, 7 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.06 km. DURATION: 1:05:14
Leo was fantastic today! Fantastic until he hit 4k, that is. But today was not a loss or a waste. We spent our first four kilometers by taking in the best that Calgary summers can offer a dog. We were enjoying the sun, admiring the smell of flowers on our nose (and literally freshly cut grass for Leo), and saying hello to rafters on the Elbow. But at 4k, Leo decided that he had quite enough and wanted to partake in the relaxing and stretching part of summer. I indulged his inclinations a little bit, but eventually coaxed my friend into a slower trot. But our problem persisted somewhat as there was so much soft and cool grass to enjoy. Oh Leo, never change. The scoop: 1 poop, 7 pees, and so much grass.
DISTANCE: 8.01 km DURATION: 1:03:47
Modification was the word of the day for Leo. We still achieved decent mileage in the summer heat, but we did make a list of changes to be sure we both returned home healthy. #1 - Leo usually loves his breaks, and today I indulged his inclinations. Stop where you need, friend. #2 - When we did stop, we took an extra few moments to catch our breath and take a second in the shade to smell the flowers. Beautiful! #3 - Water was a must today and Leo didn't mind drinking from the Gulpy. #4 - Tree-lined streets! We did our best to find the best shade the Beltline could offer. #5 - What is a hot summer run without at least one small dip in a river? Leo loved his stretch in the Elbow this afternoon and I certainly didn't mind a chance to cool my toes either. Thanks for the modifications today, Leo. Have a restful evening. The scoop: 1 poop, 6 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.36 km DURATION: 1:02:35
Ok Leo, we're not really accustomed to rain on the prairies. But I know I for one would far prefer to run outside; we break less stuff! So with me in my rain jacket, and one fantastic 'before' shot of the handsome Leo, off we ran into a steady drizzle. Leo and I found a peaceful pathway with few runners, and even fewer bunnies and squirrels to distract us. I think Leo was a little distracted by the rain and therefore preferred to hang out at my 4 or 5 o'clock. Was he drafting me to keep dry? I know Leo is a pretty smart cookie so I wouldn't be surprised. As a result, we took it a little easy on our pace so I could dodge lampposts while keeping an eye on my partner. But despite blocking my friend from some rain, as our run progressed Leo slowly took on the look of a dog that had jumped in the river. And while he didn't roll in the grass for the first few kilometres, his old habits emerged and he just had to try it midway. Oh gracious, I'm glad I remembered my towel. Great, peaceful run today for Leo. The scoop: 1 poop, 6 pees.
DISTANCE: 8.12 km DURATION: 1:03:36
Oh Leo, you just wanted to stop today and I couldn't help but periodically oblige. But there is more to this story than a slightly reluctant dog. I clearly woke Leo up from a good nap so he needed a few minutes before he was really ready. Fair enough. But after quite a few stops, and one that looked like Leo wasn't finished his nap, we started moving more steadily. But then there was that bunny in the park. Then there was an eagle where I couldn't help but stop and stare. Leo was looking at the magpies that were in a tizzy as a result. And then there was the boy on a skateboard and we had to take a sit break with treats so Leo didn't have the urge to race after him. But between all those events we did run. And we enjoyed the newly green river pathway and the scent of lilacs along the way. But all of that excitement must have tuckered out my run partner as Leo had absolutely no problem getting back into his kennel. Good work today, Leo. Even if we did have a few stops. The scoop: 2 poops, 7 pees.
Welcome Leo! Our family has been so excited to greet you so we’ve been sprucing up the backyard and collecting all the best chewing sticks. But it would seem that your first favourite toy is Murphy’s blue ball. Fantastic! We’re so looking forward to our little vacation together and Murphy is definitely looking forward to playing (after Leo has crunched this ball just a little more, of course). We will be heading out for our first walk together this evening after the heat cools just a little.
Pet Sitter and Runner: Sheri