The morning walk we take is always Sadie’s walk. But this one is very special. After she prances around the deck with eager happiness, we put on her leash, grab the doggie treats, and off we go.
Today, we are heading up the street toward the hills. Sadie knows the way, and loves smelling all the bushes and weeds and mailboxes along the way. She knows them all very well, and seems to check to make sure everything is in order as she leads us on. She wants to go to the park today, it seems, because she crosses the street at the top of the hill, heading toward the community garden and the park beyond.
We often walk the perimeter fence, and cross the bridge over the small creek, and maybe stop off at the dog park for a burst-of-energy run. But today when we reach the fence, Sadie sees something that she has never seen before.
Past the confines of the park, there is a large field that covers the hillside. I have noticed livestock fencing, but never have seen cows close-by in this field. Neither has Sadie. But today, they are here. A lot of them.
She approaches with extreme caution. No prancing here; she crouches, shies away, approaches, shies away. Her ears lay back against her head. More cows are coming to the fence, looking curious and sweet. I think maybe they aren’t all cows, but young bulls. Sadie doesn’t seem to know what to think.
She retreats from the growing crowd, walking along the fence toward the creek, something she’s done many times before, without the cows/baby bulls who now begin to follow. She pulls Stanley, who is attached to the other side of the leash, away into the playground, as if she needs a break from this new idea of huge creatures that are neither people nor dogs.
I wander away from them, noticing a heron on the hillside.
Then, Sadie wanders back, heading toward the fence, then shying away. One baby bull pulls away from the crowd and follows Sadie, reaching out his nose. They both pause, on different sides of the fence, looking like they are each wondering what their next step will be. The baby bull makes a funny little jump, and Sadie startles, then the baby bull crouches and runs, crouches and runs, almost baiting Sadie to play. The baby bull takes off back to the cow crowd, and Sadie follows, crouching and running, crouching and running.
Now she is in full play mood. So is the baby bull. More come up to the fence, and Sadie and the cows introduce their noses to each other.
It’s a funny scene. Large animals getting acquainted with a small animal. I believe that Sadie is not used to feeling small. But by the end of their encounter, she seems to be over that. We have to insist that it’s time to move on. But, I am guessing that Sadie will want to do the park walk a bit more often now that she’s had a grand adventure there. Sadie, the cowgirl.