Happy pups at summer camp

As I’ve mentioned, our dogs are living it up at “summer camp” with my parents while we are in London.

My dad faithfully sends us tons of photos and videos, which naturally make me very happy. (For example, he sent 13 dog videos in one day over WhatsApp. Thirteen.) I’m not sure how pleased my dear, tidy mother is about having our monsters for a whole summer, but my father, who is as crazy about dogs as I am, is over the  moon about it.

Dogs at summer campLook how happy these goons are!

Dad’s favorite activity is taking the girls and Dublin (the neighbor’s lab, who is Dad’s de facto dog) out on long walks, all tethered together in this crazy system of ropes:

Dogs at summer campHe still uses the girls’ Freedom harnesses, as you can see, but he eschews standard leashes. To each his own. (At least they are not retractable leashes, which I loathe to no end.)

Pyrrha’s happiness has been the big (very welcome) surprise.

Dogs at summer camp
Dad’s caption for this photo: “Bring it on, world; I ain’t afraid of nothin’!”

She, the dog who tends to mistrust men, has reportedly become very attached to Dad. She brings him toys as an invitation to play (what? Pyrrha?), and she even lies down outside his bedroom door in the morning, waiting for him to wake up. Color me stunned and so, so pleased.

Eden is his trusty athletic companion, however. Dad takes her rollerblading around the neighborhood and on morning trail runs and spends plenty of time perfecting her Frisbee skills. He likes to tell me that Eden is just him in dog form: constantly moving and ready to play 24/7. Sounds about right.

Even though I miss them very much, it brings me a lot of joy to know that Pyrrha and Eden are so happy and so well cared for in our absence. I have full confidence that they are loving life at summer camp, and I am not exaggerating when I say that I expect them to be somewhat disappointed when we come take them back to “normal” life with us at the end of the summer! I think they will grieve. I know my dad will…

Does your family ever watch your dogs for you? How does it go?

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3 thoughts on “Happy pups at summer camp

  1. I don’t have family nearby, but I have dog-loving friends who have cared for all my dogs over the years. I get photos sent to me and email updates and I return the favor by caring for their dogs. It takes a village to raise both children and well-adjusted dogs.

  2. Funny, this question is very relevant for me right now 🙂

    We recently went to Europe for a month – our first time leaving our dog (Betsy) for more than a day since we got her 3 years ago. Once, about a year and a half ago, we left Betsy overnight at doggy daycare. We had tried to set her up for success – having her stay for low stress half-days a couple times a week leading up to the overnight stay, but it was a total failure, and she was so traumatized and sobbed so hysterically when we picked her up that we swore we’d never leave her at a kennel again.

    So, when we decided to go to Europe we had to figure out a better plan, and got super lucky – my brother agreed to live in our house with her, so she didn’t have to adjust to a new person (she already knew and loved my brother) or a new environment, and my mom, whom my dog also adores, came over and walked her/took her out for hikes/took her for “field trips” back to her house to visit with her dogs. It was pretty much the perfect setup.

    When we got home after being gone for over a month, Betsy’s reaction was the exact same as if we’d come home from a day at work. Happy to see us but hardly out-of-the-ordinary. I take this as a sign that she had a very low stress and pleasant time while we were gone, so we were very glad 🙂

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