When Joe's work schedule first changed and he was no longer home for our afternoon doggy walks I contemplated hitting the pavement with my pups and my IPod. I was used to chit chatting with Joe during our walks so I thought listening to some tunes would be a good alternative. However, after one day I decided that this was not the best plan. First, we live in a new community that still has a lot of construction going on and there aren't always sidewalks available for walking. Almost everyone walks in the street since we have such little traffic and the few sidewalks we do have are kind of narrow. I always try to walk against traffic so that I can see any cars that are coming and move over to the side, but this isn't always possible. This makes listening to my IPod not such a very good idea since I might not hear the cars coming up behind me. We also have some dogs in the neighborhood that are allowed to wander around off leash and with no supervision and they aren't always the most calm and collected. Flash does not care to be approached by strange dogs running towards him so I always keep an eye AND and ear out for any furry neighbors that are running loose.
I remember mentioning to Joe my reasons for deciding against the IPod and he agreed that it made a lot of sense. Then I confessed that even if those things weren't an issue and we had vast sidewalks and all the dogs were perfect (including ours) I would still not want to take the IPod along. My biggest problem with listening to music during our walks is that I actually felt like I was being rude to the dogs! I know it's weird. But, who wants to go along for a walk with someone and then be ignored the whole time while they hum along to oldies but goodies? Our walks are a time for exercising and bonding. With the IPod it would just be a human and three dogs that happen to be walking in the same direction, but really have nothing to do with one another. So the four of us go out every afternoon and the IPod stays home in it's docking station. In order to add some variety and fun I do like to sing them tunes every once in a while as we walk. I don't think the pups, or my neighbors, appreciate it that much and might actually wish they were wearing some headphones. Oh well, life is all about compromise!