The wait, I am certain, is worse when we were up late, and thus wake late; there are some urgencies in life that get more urgent with time. If it is very cold, or raining, or even dark there is the option of opening the door to the back yard, where emergencies can be taken care of, but it is not their first choice. They will wait as long as they can. Of course, it also delays breakfast (usually on return), but that is more of a tolerable disappointment than delaying the other, um, functions. So they have to wait for me, but still are not going to do their business right away. At least outside the gate to the community (luckily only one house away); you just are not going to go too close to home, not if you are a well-bred dog! (I remember an incident with my late dog Yonkel while we were driving; he started jumping up and down, atypical for him, in the back, obviously very agitated. We figured out what he needed, pulled off the highway, attached his leash, and took him out. He walked 50 feet before taking care of an obviously desperate need. Even in such circumstances, you just don’t poop too close to home!)
Today was a late walk, and the putting on of shoes generated a lot of excitement. Although I don’t think it rained last night, there are still puddles from a couple of days ago (they should dry up in today’s sun) and the ground in the desert park is damp. This increases the smellability of things, apparently, so there are a lot more stops; I may not lengthen the distance of the walk (or even shorten it) but they can lengthen the duration. Today most business was completed relatively early, so we had a while for just walking and smelling. Too late, I guess, for the Cooper’s hawks to still be on the prowl, and we were not stalked by a coyote as they were with Pat a couple of days ago, so it a nice walk. We saw some early spring birds, particularly the cardinal-like crested ones; we saw a pyrrhuloxia (I think, although I can confuse them with female cardinals), and a few phainopepla (not my pix). It is getting warmer in the mornings, and as time goes by there will be less need for me to put stuff on, although even (especially!) in the heat of summer, sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, and of course shoes are still necessary. We do get to walk, so I think that they forgive me!