Heat’s on at the park for all

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The only downside to all the wonderful weather over the Easter weekend was the mild inconvenience suffered by dog owners.

Early morning and late evening walks to keep doggo out of the heat weren’t too much of a problem.

But if you own a sighthound who lives to chase everything he sees and you carry more props than a magician’s assistant to divert his attention, if you’re cutting about in just a T-shirt and shorts, then you’re going to run out of pockets.

A lead, a plastic tub full of cubes of cheese, an indestructible rubber ball that looks like a basketball but is the size of a tennis ball, five poo bags and a set of house keys.

During the winter (mid-August to June), pocket space isn’t an issue because most days it’s big coat weather. But on the days it’s hot and sunny, unless you’re wearing handbag pants (cargo shorts with more pockets than a snooker table), you’re in deep trouble.

But our sighthound Walter has been in the wars recently. Last week, while chasing another dog’s ball at full pelt in the park, he crashed into a pointer like Nemanja Vidic’s blood-curdling tackle on Kyle Walker a few years ago and limped away, dazed and screaming, fell at my feet and didn’t move for 30 seconds.

It was time for some serious first aid. A cube of cheese from the plastic tub and he was back on his feet. The pointer was fine. A few days before that he met his match at the beach in the form of a dog just like him, who nicked his ear during a game of bitey face and he bled like a stuck pig. Every time he shook his head it was like a 1980s splatter movie. The owner was mortified but once it scabbed over, he was fine.

SOUTH AMERICA UPDATE: The “gap yah” adventurers are having quite the time of it in Medellín, Colombia. This week they watched Independiente Medellín beat Jaguares de Córdoba 3-0 at the Estadio Atanasio Girardot with some Irish lads they met in Peru (£8 a ticket), visited the once notorious Comuna 13 district and went on the Pablo Escobar tour where they had a good old natter with his driver.

Counting. The. Days. Twenty.