Terii’s Cycling Babble


Just Hamster-ing About
April 23, 2016, 6:57 am
Filed under: Day Rides, Misc

The title says it all. All my recent rides have been on the hamster-tracks in the local area. Round and round and round an….

You get the idea.

Nothing notable most of them. The sun was shining at times. It rained on us during others. Sometimes the splats of rain left little bits of slushy ice on us. Sometimes all of those on a single outing as most days have been in the low 40’s with a parade of scattered showers. There were flowers. Leaves have shyly creeping out on hedges for a couple weeks now. Some even have proper leaves. A few trees here and there are coyly allowing the faintest blush of green to tip their branches.

The most important things that have happened involving Loke and trike was our most recent trip to the brukhund (work dog) shop which sits just under our vet clinic.

On our way there, we’d crossed the old E4. Just beyond the intersection, I saw something small and reddish brown scurrying across the road right toward us. One of the busiest parts of Uppsala, as cars screeched to a stop and Loke went nuts, I was sure I’d witness someone’s pet cat getting creamed.

Not a cat. A hare. It was in a panic and swerving to and fro. Finally it bolted onward to our side of the road and past our back wheel about 10 yards behind us. Silly critter. Doesn’t he know wild animals avoid such developed areas especially during high noon? Of course, hares around here are more the equivalent of squirrels in the southern parts of the US. They’re everywhere. Squirrels here on the other hand, I see a handful or less in a year here.

The rest of the way to the shop went without incident.

I had a very specific purpose to go to the shop. If Loke had known, he would have dreaded it. The nice woman there helped me pick out what was needed, recommending one that was actually the cheapest of the selection, but that fit the furball properly.

A basket muzzle. That’s the kind that fits over a dog’s nose and mouth like… well, a basket. They can still bark, open their mouth to pant and even drink. They just can’t get their mouths around things. Evil things like the ends of hotdog buns that someone tosses to the ground.

It surprised me when Jens was the one who said I should get him one. There’s been a lot of cast off food bits scattered around of late and Loke’s like a heat seeking missile on a forest fire. When he’s made to walk like a show dog in a ring for an entire walk, he’s miserable and we’re miserable. So, to keep him from foods he’s allergic to and the subsequent infections, a muzzle it is. He can still sniff around, but just can’t eat anything he might find.

When I explained why he needed it, the woman nodded and said a lot of people do the same thing, though generally with smaller dogs because it’s so easy for them to get fat if they’re scoffing every bit of food people drop on sidewalks. Perhaps she was just trying to make me feel better, but she said in her experience, the food issue was more common a reason for such a muzzle than for biting.

Loke hates it. The first couple walks, he really tried hard to paw it off. I’ve convinced him not to do that. My tricksy boy has tried to be sneaky though. The last walk I did with him, he started shoving his face deep  into the hedges and then thrashing his head around, trying to snag the muzzle on the branches to pull it off. I’m working on convincing him not to do that too. Most of the time, he doesn’t seem to exert his brain too much. When he does, he surprises me with how clever he is about whatever he’s trying.

I feel bad about it. I do. Especially when he spotted a stick and tried to pick it up. He’s so cute when he’s trotting along with a stick, eyeing me as if in challenge for me to take it. I’d feel even worse about needing to put an otherwise perfectly healthy husky down because he burned through antibiotics and has a superbug eating his feet off all because he kept sneaking foods he’s allergic to.

At least he won’t need it while running with the trike.

Jens is already planning for summer vacation. He wants to go fishing up north and has asked I look for places I might want to ride in the region he’s pointed out. Not a lot to see up there in terms of runestones, castles and the like, but still NOT the hamster track. So, we’ll see.

That’s about all there is to say on that for now. Hopefully something more with interesting photos soon.

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