We have two very different dogs that we take to the beach every night. We do not have them on a leash, because I would never put a nose around someones neck that I love. One is Austrian Sheppard (Tripper) the other is a Malamute (Takoda) who lives for the olfactory pleasures. She wants to sniff every morsel of sand as is her nose can tell her who was on this beach twenty years ago and twenty minutes ago and that is her purpose. She is a Northern Breed and ornery she must keep just our of our sight so we abruptly turn every few minutes to see if we can spot her white tail curled up and leaning slightly to the left. She cares not for the water, preferring to keep her dainty paws dry while the other dog’s surfs the biggest waves.
Each night as we wind down with the dogs as they search every inch of beach for a scrap of food left by wayward tourist. They are not on leashes. We are breaking the law. We watch the sunset as we keep an eye out for tourists with foo-foo dogs and beach patrol cops.
When the walk is over and we climb the stairs to the surfer showers. These are primitive cleaning facilities, mostly long poles with multiple showerheads spaced around it for the surfers to wash the sand off their wet suits and boards. The dogs know the location of the lowest showerhead and after a race up the stairs (all dogs think that stairs are raceways) they stand their panting and waiting for me to push the button so they can drink of the fresh shower water. They bite at the water and it usually means I get more water on me then they do in their mouths.
I am there for the sound of the waves, the joy in the dogs face. When the word Beach is uttered in our home and healthiest form of exercise known to man. Walking the beach, feeling the breeze off the ocean, hearing the whale’s breach and dolphin’s blowhole is the only gym for me. No membership fee required, just the smell of wet dog forever embedded in my car.