08 June 2008

Last Night's Beach Trip Part 1: Digging

Like I said yesterday, we took Molly to the beach last night to cool off and have some fun as a reward for all her work and a good break from the heat for all of us. To my family, no, I don't know why I've started talking about going to the beach instead of going to the shore. Probably because now that it's five minutes away, it really is the beach itself I'm talking about when I say it rather than the entire coastal area when used to mean when we talked about "going to the shore." I guess you could say I live at the shore and go to the beach a lot with my dog.

We used to just walk five minutes down the gravel road to get to a more secluded beach, but I'm not up to all the walking, especially with all the loose sand and dune climbs that trip involves. So now we have to get into the car and drive a little ways to the car-accessible beach in the little town south of us. To many of you this may sound odd, but it is the norm to be allowed to drive your car onto the beach. Only some nature preserves and bathing beaches really forbid it. Of course the natural terrain and all the dunes limit accessibility a great deal so it is only the places where there are maintained roads that you can get onto the beach, but once you are onto it, you can normally drive as far in both directions as the dunes and outlet streams allow.

Now, back to the dog-related babble. We started by letting Molly get some of that digging urge out of her system. Unless we give her a command to say otherwise (she has a digging command that she learned as a pup), she is really only allowed to dig at the beach and she knows it. So when she gets onto that sand, she wants to dig and dig and dig.

She is so happy that she is literally springing onto the sand to dig.

Molly digs and digs and digs. She throws the sands to both sides.
I usually ask her if she is trying to dig to China, but really she doesn't dig very deep (a good thing because that way we don't have to go around filling them in). She tends to dig ditches instead, throwing the sand to both sides.

That's why we put her dig on command. She's actually helped dig when we've helped clear some ditches to help drain water for a neighbor before.

Her leash looks tight because we're using a flexi leash as it is made instead of like we usually do. A loose leash gets in her way digging and she seems to be learning the difference because later she was loose leash walking on the long rope when it was set on her collar (YAY Molly!).

I have to go out now for a bit, so this will have to be a multipart blog entry. Hope everyone who reads it enjoys the pictures almost as much as Molly enjoyed "posing" for them.


Jean M Fogle said...

My Molly, a JRT loves the beach! She has been going since she was a pup and now her favorite thing to do is to dig in the sand for the sand crabs!
I am the author of a photo book of dogs at the beach, Salty Dogs.
You can read about it at my blogs!

Rebecca and Molly the Border Collie said...

Thanks! That book looks pretty interesting. I don't think we have sand crabs here in DK. We can't find anything that Molly is digging up. We think she just digs for the joy of it. Although I bet she'd be overjoyed to find something.

Hornblower said...

Wow, Molly sure looks happy here. I'm enjoying your blog.
I think you've raised a lot of good issue about training a SD. I do think that inevitably there will need to be some sort of internationally recognized designation/certification thing though, as I'm hearing a lot about people really abusing the 'no dogs' rules by claiming their yappy purse dog is a 'service dog'. Yeah right. It truly is an insult to all the real service dogs out there....

Rebecca and Molly the Border Collie said...

Thank you. We're glad you are enjoying the blog. You're probably right about the future need for certification. It just has to come about in a time frame that allows people to follow along, be affordable and available to everyone, and have full respect for owner trained dogs.

BTW, the US laws anyway give business owners the right to expel any dog that creates a disturbance. So if there are purse dogs yapping away somewhere, complain about the disturbance (the noise). When the business owner is backed up by witnesses, he should have no problems expelling the dog, offering the owner continued service without the dog, and meeting the requirements of the law.