Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960


Going to the Dog Park – Rain or Shine


Rebecca Hoch

Isabelle at the back door.

I’m sitting at my kitchen table. It’s pouring outside. Isabelle taps the back door to go out. I let her out. The linoleum is freckled with muddy paw prints documenting her forays to and from the backyard. I check my weather app hoping to see a drop in the precipitation percentage: Will there be a break in the deluge? Nope.

Isabelle is back at the door. She wants in. She’s got that look: “Time for the park, right?” I open the door for her. Sigh.

I don’t want to go. I have rain boots, I have a waterproof jacket, I am okay with getting wet. But the house is warm, there are brownies in the oven, it’s dry. I want to nap on the couch… Can’t we take a day off from the dog park? Isabelle taps at the door – again. Out she goes. As she passes, she gives me that look – again: “Now?”I contemplate my alternatives:

We can stay home. This will result in Isabelle trash diving, stealing the cat food, possibly eating cat poop. If she gets really annoyed, she’ll jump the fence and go romping on her own.

We can go for a walk. I will get wet but will also have to exert more energy. Isabelle will be placated but not tired bringing us back to the above results.

We can go to the dog park. I will have to stand in the rain for at least 30 minutes. Isabelle will run around, sniff, splash and, if we’re lucky, see her friends. She’ll be happy, content and hopefully tired. A peaceful evening will ensue.

Hmmm. This seems like a no-brainer. It’s more a question of fortitude and devotion: Do I put Isabelle’s needs ahead of my desires? She is a dog after all. The couch does look pretty darn comfy.

The crappy weather makes being a conscientious dog owner hard. It’s so tempting to put our dogs’ exercise needs at the bottom of our to-do lists, especially with holiday prepping in full swing. Going to the dog park or taking them for a walk seems like something that can wait. But it can’t. Being a dog owner doesn’t come with an on/off switch. We don’t get a in-good-weather-only clause. Exercising our dogs is essential to their happiness and well-being. It’s part of the dog-owning deal just like scooping poop, checking for fleas and cutting their toenails. Come rain or shine, it has to happen.

Isaballe scratches at the door to come back in. She doesn’t give me the look this time. Uh-oh. The trouble meter is going up. Is the trash can lid on tight? The brownies smell really good. The couch looks soft and cushy. Beside the couch are my rain boots. Sigh. “Okay,” I tell her. “Let’s go to the park.”

Rebecca Hoch is a Lake Stevens resident and proud dog owner. She and Isabelle enjoy sharing their adventures and insights from the dog park with Journal readers. To learn more about Rebecca’s writing experience or to get in touch with Isabelle, please email them at [email protected]. We love hearing from you.

Cavalero Hill Community Park aka Off-leash Dog Park: 2032 79th Ave ., Lake Stevens

You might be interested in:

Reader Comments

Rendered 12/16/2014 11:30