Dog Tales


It’s no secret that I love my dog. Besides being cute, fluffy, and adorable, he also makes a great running buddy. He has a LOT of energy, which translates into a lot of natural running talent. He has enough energy to help pull me up some of those hills, gets along well with other dogs and people, and is not that interested in wildlife. That last one is surprisingly important when running. Otherwise how would he handle the geese that think they own the Charles?


A daily occurrence

However, Samson can be a bit of a scaredy cat sometimes. Bikes, strollers, skateboards… Okay, basically anything on wheels makes him nervous. The funniest one, though, is that he is scared of bridges. Not the big ones that cars can go across, but the smaller ones that you can see through to the water below. We first noticed this a few years ago when we took him for a walk across a wooden bridge. He started walking really low to the ground like he was stalking something. It took us a little while to realize that the bridge was the problem. I can kind of understand the confusion. How do you tell a dog that they’re not going to fall through?

Today the weirdest thing happened. I did a new loop that I hadn’t run with Samson before. He was doing great and running along very happily. There’s this one spot right before going under the Longfellow bridge that is grated and you can see through to the water below. I’ve run across it plenty of times and never really thought twice about it. All of a sudden I found myself hurdling/tripping over Samson. He had stopped dead in his tracks and was apparently scared of the grate.

Bar Grating Bridge Decking Rtch

No matter how much I tried to sweet talk and coax him forward he would not budge an inch. Even using treats to try and make him walk across it didn’t help. He was just glued to the ground. I really didn’t want to run the 5 miles back the other way, so I ended up carrying my 70-pound labradoodle across the grate. Luckily, the grated section was only about 15 feet, so it wasn’t that long. However, I’m sure I looked absolutely ridiculous. It’s a good thing no runners were going by, but there were plenty of cars that saw us. I wonder if they thought I was dognapping him or something. Nope, just helping my scaredy dog out.


The Goofball

Do you like to run with your dog? Is your dog scared of anything? Bridges? What’s the funniest thing your dog has ever done?

My Joy Running Dog

Samson on our camping trip last summer. It got so cold during the night that we got him a hoodie to help him stay warm.

Since the title of my blog is “Joy Runner” I thought it be fitting to write about my dog, Samson. If I had to pick any adjective to describe him, it would probably be joyful. He’s always happy, always wagging his tail, and just loves to be around people.

Samson is a great dog to run with. He has a lot of energy, so it’s good when it gets channeled into some exercise. He’s a labradoodle – or at least that’s what we think he is. Both Labrador retrievers and standard poodles are good for running with, so it only makes sense that Sam is also a good running buddy. Here’s a link that tells you what type of a running partner your dog is! Obviously all dogs are different and there are some types that are better at running than others.

Samson’s Story

We adopted Samson about four years ago from Golden Huggs Rescue. He had been found in Tennessee after his previous owner had fallen into financial difficulty. Sam had been left in a chain-linked enclosure with no food or water for three days. He was down to a mere 44 pounds. To give you some perspective he now weighs a healthy 70 pounds.

Luckily, the rescue helped him get back to good health. In the meantime, my mom found a picture of Samson online. We immediately fell in love with him and soon after went through the adoption process. When he was better, they brought Samson up north in a big trailer along with other dogs being transported to their new families.


We were so excited when the trailer arrived!


meeting him for the first time!

Since then I’ve brought Samson on numerous runs, we’ve gone camping with him, and he’s even hiked with me up a few mountains!


South Twin Mountain in New Hampshire


Mt. Mansfield in VT


Mt. Mansfield again!


Camels Hump in VT

Samson has been the perfect addition to our family. We’re so happy that we adopted him. Here’s some pictures from Samson’s first winter in Vermont. 



awwww, look at that face!

I’m also proud to say that the rest of our family also has rescue dogs. Here’s a photo from Thanksgiving this year. All 6 dogs are rescues!



Do you ever run with your dog? Is he/she good to run with?