Look, there are no two ways to slice it. The weather has been absolute shit lately.
Cold. Windy. Wet. And cold.
Did I mention cold?
It hasn’t been easy for y’all to plan adventures with your dog. Trust me, I know. More often than not, both Bella and I have been on the inside looking out. Through a rain- and sleet-covered window.
My garden seedlings die a little every day they’re trapped inside.
(I know, I know … Mother’s Day or until the snow melts off Mica Peak, whichever comes first).
Fun adventures with your dog
Whether you’re weather-proof – you know how some humans melt like a sugar cube in the rain? – or you’re willing to wait until the sun comes out, adventures with your dog strengthen your bond of togetherness.
They’re also a great way to add physical and mental stimulation to your dog’s life, which of course leads to an improved quality of life overall.
Here are a few ways to get started:
1. Get a matching outfit and head out on the town
Show everyone your connection by sharing a wardrobe and then going on adventures with your dog. Snag matching gear then hit Riverfront Park and let the tongues start wagging. First stop? Check out my friend Erica’s business, Ledo & Ru Creations. She has also donated a matching bandana and scrunchie set to the Dog Mom’s Day draw.
2. Grab some treats with a gift basket from My Dogz
My friend Kerrina does custom gift baskets that includes her home-baked dog treats. She donated one to the Dog Mom’s Day draw (oh P.S., the winner will be announced on May 13). Squire your pup to Mirabeau Point Park in Spokane Valley, lay out a blanket and share the basket for a little picnic.
3. Go on a walking tour of your city
Play tourist in your own town! Have you heard about the Great Spokane Parks Challenge? It’s a great way to get to know the parks all over Spokane and Spokane Valley. If you’re one of the first 70 people to visit 24 parks before October, you get a free drawstring back from Spokane City Credit Union. Bella and I have found a few new places to hold portrait sessions!
If you find any great dog-friendly adventures near me in the Valley, let me know! I’m always on the hunt for places to take my dog.
4. Netflix and nap
We have enough rainy days to tempt you to stay inside and binge on Netflix. I’m addicted to true crime documentaries, anything written by Harlan Coben and terrible, terrible, terrible reality dating shows. Have you seen Love Is Blind? Come back and thank me for the train wreck. And don’t miss The Ultimatum. All you need is the comfiest spot on the couch, your pup next to you for scritches and a few hours to nod off in between the drama and trauma. Probably a glas … er, bottle … of wine too.
Maybe you could take in a dog adventure movie, like Oddball, which is streaming on Amazon. It’s the story of a Maremma sheepdog who helped save the population of fairy penguins in Warnambool, Australia.
5. Plan a pet party
You know how this whole pandemic thing has driven a wedge into meetings, dates and all-around fun times? Let’s get back to building a community around our dogs. Build that picnic basket for a few more people, throw that blanket down at one of the green spaces at Manito Park and have a puppy play day. If you’re feeling particularly froggy, make some zucchini treats for everyone and hand them out to your friends.
6. Post it or it didn’t happen
While you’re having all this fun, don’t forget to post it on the Gram. Well, yeah, you have an account, right? I mean, who doesn’t by now? Sharing your adventures with your dog is another way to keep connecting with people and helping the the community see a lighter side of life.
You could even write out your dog bucket list, tick off all the things and post about it.
What? You don’t follow me yet? Balls! Go do that now: @bigwhitedogphotography.
7. Go for a hike
If you’re no stranger to these pages, you know it’s my favorite thing to do. There’s still some time to wait before we can hit some of those gorgeous glacier lakes in Idaho but we have lots of trails around Spokane and Spokane Valley to burn off some calories. Liberty Lake is a great trail to knock off your Bloomsdog time, too. That and four other spots are included in my guide to five great hikes close to Spokane Valley.
8. Go jump in a lake
OK, look. We might want to wait a couple more months to go swimming. Would it shock you to learn I’ve already been getting in the water at least knee deep? Last summer while working on the Paws of the Panhandle fundraiser book, I had a blast jumping into lakes and rivers with my clients’ dogs. I got some pretty epic shots and I hope it’s one of the images you ask for when you book a session.
9. Book a photoshoot with a professional pet photographer
How did you not see this one coming? Haha. Smartphone pics are great, but nothing catches the sparkle and soul in your dog’s eyes like an experienced pet photographer. Then we’ll turn those adventures with your dog into an epic Statement piece for your home.
Then everyone who visits will understand you love your dog that damn much.
And that’s OK, because that just makes you my people.
But wait … that isn’t enough. Get you and your pup featured in my next book, Paws of the Inland Northwest, a fundraiser for the Spokane Humane Society.
All around the circle
Weehoo, that’s a heck of a list, isn’t it? Now get out there and enjoy some adventures with your dog.
If it’s raining and too early in the morning for Netflix and wine, jump into a circle with my professional pet photographer friends who are blogging about springtime in their areas. Trouble is, a lot of them just got a fresh dump of snow!
That includes my friend Cahlean, whose spring has NOT sprung at About A Dog Photography in central Minnesota!
When you get to the bottom of Cahlean’s post, click the next link in the circle and then keep going to magical places like Boston, Vegas and Canberra, Australia, until you find yourself back here to my list of adventures with your dog.
That’s when you know you’re home.
Right where you belong.