• Mary McDougall

The Doggo's Best Life

#yourfavoriteofficemate #yournewbestfriend #ruby #theyarefamily #4x4walking #running #stella #love #internationaldayofthedog #tubtime #travelwyoming #conciergefinds #visitsheridan #outside #trails #liveyourbestlife #yearofthedog #vacation #walking #familymembers #staycation




Sheridan was named One of the Best Places to Visit with Your Dog, in 2019 by Review.com and in 2020, for some of you, your dog became your best office mate! For me, my 4x4 has been almost my constant companion for close to 20 years. At one point in my life, I inherited the ranch dog, Jiggs (a collie mutt) who walked with me. I felt very safe with him; he was great. He LOVED women. He could be aloof....and add the fact that he had all this fur, so he kind of looked like a small wolf - he was perfect to walk the hillside of Birney, Montana with, because who really knew what he might do. He could also kill a rattlesnake (he did do it best, with his doggo buddy, Holly - though that's for another time). When Jiggs passed, I knew I wanted another walking partner. Long story short, I got a corgi for my birthday and haven't diverted from them, since.

I take my dog (and at times, dogs) with me as much as I possibly can. And when she isn't with me, I actually miss her. I fully understand the desire, the need to have day care on sight for parents, I've often felt that a fenced in yard for peoples dogs, would be a nice benefit. Alas, that's just a side note. Back to the resources! Back to where, why this blog post even ever got started! My current 4x4, is a rescue. She had a different owner for her first 2 years. Now, whether or not that is the reason she tends to be "reactive," I really can't say. I can say that I'm not the perfect dog owner. There are things I'm still learning. And maybe with the next dog, I'll be perfect. Though probably not. That doesn't mean, that I can't try. That doesn't mean that Ruby can't have some of her best days, with me. And so I'd like to share with you, some really great resources, in Sheridan County, that are available to you - so that you and your 4x4, can enjoy this great community. Let me start by saying, Ruby and I tend to walk, almost every day. Sometimes twice a day. And for her short little legs, she can go... 4-5 miles.


One of the best items that I've come to use with her, is the no-pull harness and leash.


I was introduced to this harness by my dog trainer, a local Sheridan trainer, Sue Hoy, owner at Pawsitive Training, LLC. She has worked with Ruby and I, though I suspect she has seen enough dogs that if you're here, visiting.... or wondering what to do when your significant other goes hunting (sans dog) and you have something come up, she can help you, too! {Ruby, hanging out with me at the tire-shop, with her no-pull harness on.}


This harness STOPS the neck/throat choke, as well as having control only at the neck. It STOPS that pull at your shoulder when they go after another dog, the squirrel, the rabbit, and heaven forbid, someone's child. Even a little dog like Ruby can adversely affect one's well-being. This has given me leverage. Ruby has two of them, one for home and one for the car!

I love walking in and around Sheridan; downtown is so pretty, the neighborhoods are clean and currently full of gardens and flowers. I loved seeing the "growth" - the changes in ones' yard this spring and summer, as people planted gardens. For some people, gardens were new - I saw potatoes growing in a corner of a yard where clearly, none had been planted before.


However, perhaps you'd like to go a little off road, there are equally beautiful places to walk, outside of Sheridan and in neighboring towns.













And with that, there is always the risk, or opportunity, for that sweet little 4x4 to roll in something (for me, it's a known). Something that isn't a candy bar. And eeks, it doesn't matter that you are staying in a pet-friendly motel, hotel, Airbnb, your camper, your tent, a friends pad.... you know, it's bath time. And if you are anything like me, you look at that little fur-ball of challenging growth, and you get the vision of putting it into


and you can't imagine it. All the fur that never goes away. All the fur that will undoubtedly plug the bathtub, and what to do? Hop on down to Muddy Paw Prints. Not only do they have dog supplies, food, treats, toys, that harness, they have a self-serve pet wash! Yes, I've used it. Did I get wet in the process? I did, even though they provide a cape. They have a ramp, into the tub, for Fido; a hair-dryer. I was so thankful to not have water everywhere, to not plug the the drain or find fur in my coffee mug and when you are traveling with a dog, it just makes everyone a little happier.


When I can't take Ruby, I have been truly blessed to get her out to Lucky Dog Adventures, in Parkman, Wyoming. Where she can roam, play, hike with other dogs and even a human or two. Sometimes, when there is snow on the ground, Jim goes cross country skiing while the dogs run...and run free!


{Can you find Ruby? She's a little camera shy, even for me}


And because it's National Dog Day, here are pictures of our beloved 4x4s...some of them, you may know, others, probably not. For some of you, they became your best office mate in March, perhaps your best friend, definitely my forever best walking buddy....



I literally have no idea who this dog is, who s/he belongs to - this cutie was caught by mom / dad, while under quarantine this past March. The Houston Chronicle shared it (March 20, 2020). Super cute.







Lazy Saturday morning; this one belongs to a good friend of mine.



If your dog is anything like mine, she can be in this pose all day, yet the mere mention of a "W" (alk) and you'd never know she had been like this for 8 hours.









Do you see what I see?



This is a friend's terrier.... social distancing himself in a house of 4.









Another dog captured by it's owner, shared in the

Houston Chronicle, March 20, 2020




Roscoe and Ruby, January 2019

Ruby demonstrating as to why baths are a necessity.







Abby and Gus, snoozing with a toy.









and last but not least.....



Levi.

Happy National Dog Day.

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