Being Bruce -: Pepper at the Park

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pepper at the Park

We've been "off the grid" for a few days as we've been pretty busy moving from the Porters Neck area of Wilmington to Brunswick Forest in Leland, NC. We lived in Porters Neck for five years and it was time for a change. Since my office is in Leland and many of our business and social activities are in this area, the move made sense on a practical level, but another big part of the appeal of Brunswick Forest is the long list of community amenities. NOT THE LEAST, of course, is the Brunswick Forest Dog Park. On Tuesday I took a lunch break from work and went home to get Pepper to introduce her to the first of Brunswick Forest's dog parks. I don't know where the other one is yet (or if it's even ready), but we liked this one and it's close to our house.

Pepper of course likes to pose for photographs, so the photo below one was an easy choice. And yes, for those of you who don't know Pepper, she IS that big. She's a 100-pound Giant Schnauzer. She could stand to lose a few pounds, but not too many. Mostly she's all muscle, but she's also an extremely friendly, laid back working dog. If you think "yappy dog" when you think about Schnauzers, that is so not her.

The Brunswick Forest Dog Park is divided into sections for dogs under 25 pounds and for large dogs. IMHO that decision was made by someone who doesn't really "get" how dogs relate to each other, but hey, we're happy to have a place where it's "legal" for dogs to go 0ff-leash and play together. In our experience, having been privileged for a few years to live with two 100-pound Giant Schnauzers and one 6-pound Maltese, and spending lots of time tramping in the woods and fields with a about a dozen friends and maybe 20 dogs, canine citizens get along regardless of size.

Each section of the dog park has a raised wooden platform and a water faucet. The latter is of course to get drinking water, but I'm not sure of the platform's purpose. Pepper wasn't either so she didn't get up on it. She pranced around happily for a while, checking out a lot of new smells.

Pepper explored the park fairly thoroughly, but didn't tear around the place like I thought she might. She likes to be off-leash, but she likes to be with people and other dogs even more and there weren't any other dogs around when we were there - go figure at noon on a Tuesday, right? We'll be back on Thanksgiving and on the weekend and I'll bet there will be more dogs around.

After about 20 minutes Pepper had had enough, so she chilled next to one of the many planted shrubs in the park. The park is maybe two acres in size (I'm a poor size estimator but I'm sure it's more than a quarter acre and less than five.) The entire area is surfaced with pine chips or shavings or whatever you call that stuff. We enjoyed our brief time at the park and look forward to more visits, especially when there are more dogs around.