These are trying times. Coronavirus (COVID-19) has created mass panic throughout the world. People are being told to stay in their homes and away from each other. “Social distancing” is what the media is calling it. Due to this recent phenomenon, I’ve compiled a great list of solo and indoor activities for you and your dog. This list is also beneficial for other situations, such as dealing with inclement weather or icky seasons.
I don’t consider Wynston and I to be “hikers.” Although we enjoy hiking, I have to keep strenuous activity to a minimum due to my osteoarthritis. Typically I come across trails that I’m interested in while exploring wilderness areas. That’s how I found Butcher Jones Trail. Wynston and I were visiting Butcher Jones rec area when I noticed a trail head off the coast of the beach. When we decided to hike the trail a week later, we weren’t disappointed. The dog-friendly Butcher Jones Trail is an intermediate hike which offers breathtaking views.
I’m dedicating 2019 to adventure and stepping outside my comfort zone. On days where I’m feeling less than adequate, rather than isolating myself and staying in my hermit cave, I leave my house instead. I find that when I get out into nature and explore new places with Wynston all of my worries disappear. One of my goals for this year is to travel around more of Arizona and truly enjoy everything The Grand Canyon State has to offer. So on a cloudy February day, we headed to Saguaro Lake and stopped at Butcher Jones Recreation Site to see what all the hype is about.
In the 20 years I’ve lived in Arizona, I’ve been to very few of our lakes. One of the downsides to living in the desert is the lack of bodies of water. I grew up around expansive lakes and reservoirs in Indiana, so that aspect of nature calls to me. Luckily I live just 45 minutes from the nearest major lake, which is Canyon Lake. It’s surprising that I had never been to that area, but as “adventure” is our word for 2019, I figured a visit was in order! I’ve been wanting to spend extra time outdoors with Wynston as of late, so I made an impulse decision to pack up the car for an afternoon at the lake.
For years I have been encouraging fellow dog parents to allow their dogs to sniff more frequently when out on walks. A dog’s sense of smell is their most powerful sense, and humans don’t exactly understand how important it is that a dog use their nose. Recently I saw an image on the Dog Decoder Facebook page which referred to “sniffaris” – a walk where you allow your dog to enjoy sniffing. Jill Breitner explains that a “sniffari” is far more enriching for a pup than a 30 minute walk at heel. But why? In this post I delve into why it’s important to let your dog sniff.