I can tell when fall has arrived in full force. It has nothing to do with the crisp damp air that greets me each morning. It has nothing to do with the leaves and acorns falling from the trees around our house. It certainly has nothing to do with the college and pro football season in full force though admittedly, the tossing of the pigskin makes the cold damp weather more tolerable. No, for me, it’s the way my dogs handle the change in weather.
Dusty and Kramer seem to know weeks in advance that summer is leaving and fall has arrived. They become more active around the house, chasing each other and playing. I’m not sure why, since we get out for our daily walks and afternoon park runs as much as ever. Actually, the park runs are a little longer without summer heat and high humidity making it nearly unbearable for man and beast alike. It just seems the pups know that the weather outside is changing and they are anxious for cooler days.
Once Dusty and Kramer are outside in the cool fall air, they become even more active. They don’t seem to mind the dew that stays on the ground well into the late morning and early afternoon. Dusty has never been a big fan of getting her paws damp when she has to go potty in her big backyard, but when it comes to the fall dampness, she seems to lose all sight of it and focuses on play time instead. Kramer is more interested in chasing the squirrels in the trees, investigating the mounds of acorns that litter the ground, or barking at the larger crowds of people that frequent the park when the weather cools down.
When the weather becomes cool and damp, I would rather break out my favorite sweatshirt and jeans and lounge around all day. The pups view it as a time to rip it up outside and not stop until the sun goes down. They apparently have spent too much time in the air conditioning inside during the summer and now are ready for more play time outside.
It’s actually more than the more frequent and lengthy visits that we take outside that give me a clue Dusty and Kramer know that fall is here. It’s more of the changing of their overall behavior. They become a little more wacky in the way they approach everything outside. They tend to wrestle and chase each other instead of monitoring the neighborhood people and animals. They will run up and down the stairs more frequently, acting like they want to go inside, only to turn and run the other way when we go to open the door. Kramer will run in one direction, slam on his brakes, quickly run the opposite way, slam on the brakes and do it all over again. Dusty will sit and look at him wondering if he has lost his mind!
I try to spend as much time as possible outside with the dogs, knowing that the winter cold, ice, and snow is right around the corner. I watch after them, making sure they don’t get into something that would cause them harm. I don’t want them to go anywhere near rodents carrying various diseases, choking on a nut that has fallen from a tree or going near parked cars that may have leaked antifreeze. Not to mention making sure they don’t get into the Halloween candy that children may accidentally drop on the ground when they’re running from house to house. For now, Dusty, Kramer and I are heading out for another brisk run in the park. Squirrels beware!
Do your dogs sense when fall arrives? Share your stories on Dogster!
About Tim Link: All-American guy who loves to rock out to Queen while consuming pizza and Pinot Noir and prefers to associate with open-minded people who love all critters. Considers himself to be the literal voice for all animals. Author, writer, radio host, Reiki Master, Animal Communicator and consultant at Wagging Tales.
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