Tuesday, 24 January 2012

The Social Butterfly

Sometimes it seems as though Mila has a better social life than I do. A slightly depressing admission to make when you are twenty-something and Mila is a dog – but I don’t mind, it’s good for both of us to get out and mingle with our new hound/owner friends.

This long weekend, involved a whole heap of Greyhound-related activities. We discovered a new (and fantastic) dog park in Newlands with Sally and her hounds George and Mynx where we were able to explore off-lead, have a few sprint races and get ourselves very wet, dirty and smelly playing with Mynx in the pond. Having three black hounds together was good fun and it was really interesting to see the differences (and similarities) in personality between them. It is a bit of a trek from our house to the park in Newlands…but well worth the journey. Mila has been in need of a decent run around for a little while now and after that has seemed like a calmer and more settled dog.

On Monday, we headed down to Frank Kitts Park to spend some time with some of the other Greyhounds showing ourselves off at the GAP stall at the 350 Birdman on the Wellington Waterfront. It was our first official GAP outing and an excellent opportunity to catch up with/meet some of the other owners and to gauge how far we had come with settling in and dealing with all the attention of groups of people, young kids and other dogs.

Mila has definitely calmed down a lot since our (fairly disastrous) visit to Animates to see the other Greys during her second week of living with us. It’s fair to say that on that occasion we weren’t exactly a shining example of the docile, relaxed, happy and calm dog that we are supposed to be. Anything that moved or made a noise (which in a pet shop is EVERYTHING) would prompt an alert response, or if small animals were involved, it was time to bound about the place like a lunatic! It was definitely a case of too much too soon back then – and we got out of there pretty smartly before we ruined the reputation of Greyhounds everywhere! I feel a lot more comfortable now that Mila is better equipped to deal with the distractions and the fuss (although we are yet to venture back into Animates…).  She put on a Oscar-winning performance at the stall on Monday, positioning herself alongside strangers and nudging their hand just a little bit for a pat or patiently looking up at them with her long face and those soulful eyes, wagging her tail enthusiastically as if to assure them that they had just found their new best friend. It got me thinking that all those weeks ago when we first went to meet her in Sanson, I had been suckered in by a seasoned pro!! Anyway, there were many kisses, pats and hugs for Mila and her buddies – all of whom were very well behaved - and if the number of pamphlets handed out in the hour or so that we were there is anything to go by, it was a very successful day! I hope to post some pics up soon...

So, we now have some new fixtures in the social calendar – A&P Shows, the Martinborough Fair, GAP runs and some doggie play dates. It’s a great way to meet new people and to give Mila some exposure to different settings (and animals) and it keeps us both out of trouble. Between that and the renovations to our house, I wonder if I will ever get the time for some of the important human things in life…like shopping!!


  1. Aaah yes. The rite of passage that is the first Animates visit..... George was utterly overwhelmed. He poohed in the dog food aisle, then released Lake Taupo in the cat food section. With two staff cleaning up after us, we grabbed what we'd come to buy and beat a hasty retreat, not to return for several months. But I can truly say he's now a perfect hound every time, and is on first name terms with many of the staff.
    Sally, George and Mynx

  2. Isn't it wonderful how you acquire a whole new extended family when you bring a Greyhound into your family:) We've got a GAP walk on Sunday that we're looking forward to. Haven't seen anyone since November!