The mutual benefits of dog walking

Coming into winter upon my arrival in Austria I was a bit worried about becoming a hermit who wouldn’t leave the house! And so knowing how much I loved dogs, and missed my own in Australia, my lovely boyfriend organised for me to walk dogs at the local shelter. This not only made me (and the dogs) happy, but also motivated me to get out of the house for some fresh air on those really cold, winter days. So here’s my current top three dogs!

And one day there were puppies at the dog shelter! So cute!


Crazy Namo
Crazy Namo

My first regular dog was Namo. He was a crazy, lazy-eyed character with a big nose, a big heart and an active bowel. He dragged me around, sniffing everything in sight and wanted to talk to every dog along the way. The people at the dog shelter remarked after a few weeks that it was nice that someone was walking the crazy dog now because he wasn’t so naughty any more.

But as time went on Namo grew… tired, I guess. He started not wanting to walk as far and then he would pull me home like his favourite TV show was about to come on. He was less crazy about walking and more happy to sit on a bench and gaze out at the world as it went by.

Namo got a bit quieter toward the end
Namo got a bit quieter toward the end

When I returned from a three week holiday in Oz I discovered Namo was no more. Sadly, my German wasn’t good enough for me to determine exactly what happened to him. I translated Namo is gone perfectly well, but as to the reason, well that was all gobbledygook to me. I can only hope that someone took to his kindly eyes and he’s now resting happily in a new home.


Rocky taking a break on a hot day
Rocky taking a break on a hot day

Rocky is my current dog walking companion. Rocky is as big and crazy as Namo was, just with a less active bowel (phew)! He’s also much happier to take in scenery when we get to the top of the hill and to pose for photographs.

He’s some kind of Labrador cross, though when he rejected one of my treats I questioned there was any Lab in him at all! Rocky loves people, especially children, but is unsure about other dogs and loves to growl at them from 400m away!

He’s pretty crazy too (I get feeling that these people only give me the crazy dogs), but he’s a good kind of crazy and a good listener too.


The gorgeous but highly strung Danico
The gorgeous but highly strung Danico

Danico is one of the dogs I walk every now and again when my regular dog is out. Danico is some kind of sheep dog and is scared of… something. But I can’t figure out what. One time it was cars, another time, the umbrella.

The first walk I took Danico on lasted all of four minutes before he stopped and refused to walk any further. I duly walked him back and managed to sneak past the dog shelter without him noticing. However, we only got a minute up the road before he realised (they’re smart, these dogs). We followed this routine as the lengths got shorter and shorter until we just sat on the ground together and talked.

Since then he’s gotten a little better, but walking Danico is less like physical exercise and more like a psychology session. But I guess that’s just what he needs.

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