It may be a cold and gloomy day but I had a nice run. More dog-themed thoughts as I watched a man, with an elegant and placid looking greyhound, stoop down to pick up some slimy pooh. Whenever I dream of owning a dog I try to remind myself of the responsibilities of dog walking – specifically the pooh collection. Some months ago I accompanied a professional dog-walker friend as she exercised various chocolate labradors in an affluent area of Kent. It seems that chocolate labradors are particularly popular in such suburbs. These dogs strike me as prone to laziness and fat and boast low intelligence. I’m sure there are exceptions. However, what all dogs have in common is a propensity to pooh when exercised. Gone are the carefree welly-wearing days of my childhood when we walked the family dog in the fields surrounding our house with ne’er a plastic bag or pooper scoop in hand or pocket. Todays urban and suburban dog-walking takes place in parks and, quite understandably, comes with the responsibility of picking up whichever pooh those dogs under your care deposit on the ground. This helps to quench my enthusiasm for dog ownership. For now.