Happy #fetchfriday! It’s almost the weekend, and this time of year, that means it’s almost time for sweatpants, crafting, and of course, bundling up for a dogventure or two.
Is it just me, or did it get a lot colder this week? Although it looks like temperatures will be going up a bit this weekend, there is no longer any denying that for better or for worse, winter is upon us.
I have always been a little jealous of people with dogs who don’t like the cold. Dallas doesn’t seem to mind–or even notice–when the temperatures drop. It’s both a blessing (because it keeps me from hibernating for the winter) and a curse (because it keeps me from hibernating for the winter).
So we do our best to dress for the elements and get outside. Even when it’s cold. And raining and/or snowing. And probably also dark.
Which brings me to this week’s topic: what to do with your doggy in the dark. In the summertime, weekday evenings are full of opportunity. Get home from work around 5:30pm, have some dinner, and there will still be hours left to go on a dogventure before sunset. Winter is a different story. We, like most people, usually don’t get home from work until after dark. It can be really hard to get motivated to get back outside to give Dallas her evening exercise.
Most often, we opt for a walk around the neighbourhood, sticking to the well-lit streets. But the look on Dallas’s face when we get home from an on-leash walk says it all… That’s it? No fetch? Not even a little bit?
To mix things up for dog and human, I’ve been on the hunt for some fetch spots with after-hours lighting. And I have some good news. Halifax has a fantastic winter off-leash program. As of November 1 each year, a bunch of sports fields in the HRM become off-leash areas. This continues until May 1, when the fields go back to on-leash status for the summer. I love this concept. It just makes so much sense. I mean, the fields aren’t being used for anything else. Let the dogs run free!
To see the full list of winter off-leash sports fields, click here. All HRM asks for in return is for everyone to use a little common sense: clean up after your dog, and don’t barge in with an off-leash dog if there are others using the field (for non-dog purposes).
Now, to find the sports fields that are both (a) on the list, and (b) reasonably well-lit.
Yesterday we checked out the Mic Mac Sports Fields. There is no direct lighting on the field, but between the streetlights and the lighting from the Crichton Park School, we made out just fine. There are two huge fields available for off-leash use, the top one being a little brighter than the bottom one. But guess what? The bottom field is almost entirely fenced in, which is awesome.
You know what else is awesome? The Mic Mac Mall is right there. Since my second favourite store is The Bay, this works out quite nicely.
So if you’re looking for a fantastic (and completely legal) fetch space with passable lighting, and you want to run some errands at the mall while you’re at it, the Mic Mac Sports Fields are pretty ideal. Check ’em out and let me know what you think!
(Dallas approves this message.)