Now, I am used to Betty getting all the attention. She’s cute, friendly, and crazy funny. When she doesn’t have her nose to the floor, snuffling for food, she’s prancing around like a show pony, demanding that people take notice of her.
The nights are drawing in so much at the moment that there is hardly any daylight left. Unless you have the luxury of getting out for a walk whenever the fancy takes you, you will probably be taking your dog out in the dark.
In Cambridge, there are more bikes than all the tea in China. Well, not quite, but you catch my drift. We also have wonderful off-road pathways, shared by pedestrians and cyclists alike, where no one has a clue as to which section of the path we’re supposed to be in to avoid a collision.
I can take a bump or two. In fact, in my case, the cyclist may even come off worse. Betty is a different story. I would not like to see the result of some cyclist, hell-bent on hurtling through the city at the speed of light, running into Betty. They can break bones, which is a costly trip to the vet and a lengthy recovery in plaster.
Last year, Betty was too young to be trotting around off the lead. She hadn’t had her full set of vaccinations, so I was carrying her around outside in her doggy pouch. This year however, one of the highlights of her day is to run around like a lunatic, from one green space to the next, crossing pathways without so much as a glance from left to right.
I did some research on Amazon and decided on a GoDoggie-GLOW collar and lead set. The customer reviews averaged around 4.5 stars out of 5, and the colour options included hot pink. What could be more perfect? The parcel arrived yesterday and I plugged the lead and collar into my laptop’s USB ports to make sure they were fully charged for the evening’s walk.
It was finally time to go out, and I adjusted the small collar to its shortest setting and clipped it onto Betty’s neck. She was a little unsure of the new accessory due to its weight, but I think the discomfort was offset by the fact that I wasn’t also making her wear a jumper, as the weather was unseasonably warm.
Betty has always worn a harness, as I prefer to be putting pressure on her chest area, rather than her little neck if she decides to pull or make a dart for something. So I clipped the lead to the harness and left the collar free-style around her neck. I pressed the two on switches and she lit up light a Christmas tree.
We are used to people voicing their appreciation of how cute and wonderful Betty is as we go about our walks, but this was something else. Several people commented on how clever the idea was and one passenger in a car hung out the window and shouted “brilliant!” as they drove past. It was dusk when we started our walk and it got dark towards the end. As we got closer to one couple, they were discussing whether I was out walking with a pink lightsaber, in appreciation of the imminent release of the new Star Wars film. When they could make out that the length of LEDs had a little dog at the end of it, the mystery was revealed.