Thursday May 6th, 2021 12:11PM

Hitting the ol’ dusty trail

By Alyson Shields Reporter
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I wouldn’t exactly call Smidge athletic. She really prefers to spend her time snoring on my lap, or curled up on her bean bag, or nestled in the papasan chair than she does chasing or fetching toys, running through the house like a mad dog, or weightlifting.

When I first got Smidge, she was a little squishy. After all, she was recovering from a spay surgery and had already had at least one litter of puppies (possibly more, but we’ll never know.) But what I did know was I wasn’t happy with the content of her food, and her little mama belly drooped whether she stood up or scrunched when she sat down.

I also learned she preferred to handle her business like a traveling salesman. And thus, our daily walks began.

Fast forward to today, and Smidge is much more toned, with defined muscles on her legs and her mama belly more taut and more adorable than before.

This weekend, I decided to put Smidge to the ultimate test and try a trail to see how she would do. I picked the Solar System trail in Gainesville – it’s about two miles one way and paved, so similar in texture to her usual sidewalk walks. I thought everything from, “she walks every day, maybe she’ll do well” and “I hope to dog she doesn’t go nuts when she sees other dogs or people.”

It’s time to brag. I’ve waited long enough. My precious wittle pup-wupper handled the trail incredibly well in all aspects, from walking the whole way on her own four feet to managing kids, strollers, other dogs, runners, and even two unicyclists.

My dog - the rescue with a bad habit of dishing out extreme sass, the rescue who doesn’t like walking on the sidewalk with other dogs in our neighborhood, the rescue who I adopted out-of-shape and eating lackluster dog food but would prefer to eat from the trash – had been a happy, model dog-citizen, living it up on the trail.

So yeah, you could say I’m the proudest dang dog mama on this side of the Mississippi. And yeah, you can be assured we’ll be hitting the ol’ dusty trail again soon. And yeah, she spent the rest of the snoozing, indoors, on a soft blanket.

  • Associated Tags: Reigning Cats and Dogs
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