Harley – Labrador Retriever Mix – one year old
As I walk down row two this week, trying to decide who to profile for the blog, Harley, a Labrador retriever mix, is sprawled out on the floor of his kennel, paws spread in opposite directions. “Yup,” I think to myself, “this guy definitely deserves it.” He is staring at a toy waiting for it to do something exciting, but also perhaps enjoying the cool concrete on this 80-degree evening; we’re finally getting some nice weather around here. Harley is a favorite around the shelter, not only among staff and volunteers, but also among other dogs. There are very few pups that come through the door that don’t get along with this social butterfly who always seems happy to meet a new friend, canine or human.
“Harley!” I call out. He does a 180-degree spin and is at full attention. He sits patiently, but his tail reveals that deep down he is trying as hard as he possibly can to keep his puppy personality at bay. He can’t handle the waiting anymore, stands up and starts spinning around in circles, pauses for a second, then keeps going. I ask for him to sit and he quickly plops back down. Once I’m in the kennel, he is all smiles, giving me a warm greeting but soon after starts nuzzling the leash letting me know he’s ready to get outside. Smart dog.
Picture time. I take Harley down to the off leash area and pull out my camera. As you can probably tell by the photo, Harley is a total camera flirt with a smile that reaches from ear to ear, a total charmer. He even has that cute little head tilt mastered, I think he knows that earns him an extra treat, because it certainly comes natural. We play a bit in the yard before I grab the leash to head back out onto the trail. Harley runs to my side and sits down; he’s ready to go.
On the trail, Harley is an absolute delight. He stays right by my side, eyes and nose going every which way. I’m pretty sure he’s trying to keep me safe from all those tricky squirrels that, if left unchecked, might attack at any moment. It would probably be nice to point out that Harley’s tail has not stopped wagging the entire time. A couple treats, an active play buddy and some time on the trail keep this pup about as happy as they come.