Finally, my four legged best friend finally got to explore the water both in my canoe and play fetch with the wife. An amazing day was had by this Hiking Forward family. We hit one of my favorite spots at Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Park on Saturday to paddle and have lunch.
Boston was unsure of the canoe at first as was my youngest Gabby who didn't care for how Boston was tipping the canoe. All this, even though the canoe was only half way in the water and half way out. Me and my girls still paddled the canoe around Prairie Lake for a bit on a beautifully mild later July day. Little did we all know that mom was back on the shore with Boston playing fetch in the lake.
Upon our return we were amazed to see Boston swimming about the lake, and chasing a stick he had dug out of the muck near the edge of the lake. I have never seen him so happy. Jump in the lake, swim to the stick, come back on dry land, shake and get everyone wet, sit and repeat. Over and over he jumped in the lake after his stick.
My dream has always been to have an outdoorsy water dog who loved the water and being out on it as much as I did. The real test came when I wanted to get Boston in the canoe and to paddle around with me... keeping him in the canoe would be the test. I coarsened him in by taking his new stick. He hopped on in the boat. I hide the stick in the seat and paddled away. For a while he wondered where his stick was then soon became comfortable with being in the boat. Never did he sit still always pacing from side to side and looking about. However, I am thrilled that the two of us got the chance even for a short while to have a quiet moment out on the water. With a little more practice and patience, I see us spending lazy afternoons fishing together and enjoying the lake in our future.
The other highlight of the afternoon was when Grace asked if she could take my kayak out and give it a try. Mind you, this is a fourteen foot kayak and a normal adult sized paddle. Okay sure, I said and off she went. She listened intently and paddled well and hard when needed to make turns. She is now curious what other colors kayaks come in. She has already requested lime green. Looks like I am going to be building a second tier on the trailer I just built to fit some more boats.
At the end of the day we all finally realized that this Hiking Forward family has discovered a new family activity with Boston and one that will expend a ton of his extra energy. Going camping with him in the future will require lakefront property I think.
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