In Woodlands, one can still find wide expanses of empty grass fields which the government very kindly trims regularly. Walking Milo is like a bullock (Milo) walking a cart (me).
I know. I know. There are ways to train him to heel. But I have not managed to do it. And no matter how irritating he is, all is forgotten when he gets onto my lap. So, after so long, he is still the bullock and I am still the cart.
Understandably therefore, one of my favourite ways of walking Milo is to bring him into a large (and secret) field in Woodlands with lots of grass and no one else, and take his leash off. He loves that. He will run, and run, and run... muscles rippling and ears flying back in the wind. He literally flies through the air with every bound. Our Milo has lotsa machismo. If he were a human, he would be a biker in leather pants.
When he sees a puddle of water, he'll run towards it full pelt... bound into the air and do a body turn and land on his flank ... SPLASH! into the puddle. Therein, he wiggles about and then turns the right way up and DRINKS in thirsty gulps. There is no way to stop him from drinking the water that possibly, another dog pee-ed in. If I can't stop him from being a bullock on our walkies, I can't stop him from drinking pee.
With the many rains this season, there are plenty of water puddles in our secret field. In some of them, we can stand knee deep. They're chock full of little tadpoles too. Milo loves them. It's such great fun trying to catch those black wriggly things in the water.
But you know, we're in Singapore right? Even if a field has no one in it, there are still people around. Joggers run by along the kerb. Little dogs the size of kitties scuttle along on impossibly tiny paws. And Milo gets attracted to anything that runs. I have thus to be vigilant to keep a good 500m distance of buffer between Milo and any moving target. When I spy a moving target, I start running in the other direction so that Milo will chase me instead.
There have been close calls though. Milo took off after a jogger, who saw him from 300m away and then jogged faster. Milo is fast. So the jogger sped up some more. I could not see the jogger's face but I would imagine that his pupils must've been dilated to the maximum. The Daughter had to run very hard in the other direction to get Milo to chase her instead.
Milo is a scary looking dog. All who know him, know he is a wimp. His favourite seat is on someone's lap and just 2 drops of rain on the patio starts him begging. But with his black snout and dark spots on his tongue, he looks like a Doberman wannabe about to revel in carnage and murder whilst on his walkies. You can just imagine him lifting his head up, jaws dripping with blood to howl at the white fluffy clouds after having ripped the hearts out of innocent passersby. Even when he is on the leash, most people's eyes go wide when they see him. Some stop in their tracks. Others walk around us gingerly.
BUT little old ladies and little old men with walking sticks recognise Milo for who he is. A kampong kia (village or small town kid) with no elegance, no style but a lot of heart. He's a huge giant that can be laid low with a sharp "No!", and all he wants when he chases someone is to smell him/her at the crotch and offer his own crotch for inspection. That's called making friends and being sociable.
Little old ladies and little old men love Milo. He reminds them of the village dogs that roam their childhoods. They'll tell us that Milo is handsome. They hold out in the frail and trembling hands delectable snacks that they keep away from the other dogs in the neighbourhood. By contrast, The Daughter's classmates call him "that rabid dog". Obviously, these young people never heard of crotch etiquette.