I would take Corey everywhere I possibly could. He was the social butterfly attending markets, bike rides, festivals, parties, parks, cafes, work places and dinner tables.
Everyone loved Corey and accepted him in places many other dogs would or could not go. He sat on the laps of many of my friends and family at their dinner tables, while their own dogs sat outside. It was accepted. After all, this was Corey. Corey had manners, very good manners. Better than many children I know.
It goes without saying that I have started Amber on the same route to social butterfly fame. She has started to go everywhere I can possibly take her. Her first big social event was the ‘Centenary Rocks’ festival. A large free family event put on by the local council in July every year. The festival has something for everyone from street performers, petting farm, big and small kid rides, helicopter flights, live music performed by known and unknown artists, antique cars, face painting, men shed, local business stalls, food, wine, arts and entertainment. It’s big, loud and packed!
I thought it would be a great event for Miss Amber to work on her social skills and to get familiar with lots of people and loud sounds. Amber strutted across the lawn toward the crowd of people showing all the confidence in the world, her head held high. Just then the band started up. She flipped from confident dog to frozen dog and then running dog. Racing left, right, back and in front trying to escape this loud pounding sound. Her ears were pinned back and her eyes round. She was scared.
I quickly picked her up and thought it might be best to carry her around until she is comfortable with all the noise and people. It didn’t take her long though, as soon as she started to get the usual gushing adults and children reaching out for a pat her confidence came back. Amber, just like Corey, causes quite a stir amongst strangers. People are immediately attracted to Amber and want to cuddle her. I became surrounded by a group of women, squealing and bouncing questions back and forth.
We decided it was best to venture back out to the great lawn when we stumbled upon a children’s petting farm. Stocked full of baby farm animals, to feed and pat, goats, piglets, calf, chickens and ducks. Amber sniffed the air and then raced toward a baby goat. She was keen to get a closer look of this weird smelling creature. The goat must have been thinking the same thing as they just stood their ground and stared at each other.
Next stop was the main arena where the big bands were playing. Amber strutted right up though the middle of the tables and chairs, past the people, finally happy with a spot half way to the stage. Amber was a lucky girl and scored herself a doggie sample bag with an array of raw hide treats. With the band playing she stretched out on the lush green lawn and felt the sun on her back.
I smiled at her and thought to myself ‘That sure is the life’.