Well, it is now over a month that I have been making the trip between residences, toting the entire crew with me. These photos show a little bit of the insanity that has become my life.
Every week is like packing to go to the Nationals. Right now I am travelling with SIXTEEN dogs, and I don’t even have Brogan along as he is visiting with Debbie until life settles a bit. (I know it will never settle totally).
So it is easy to fall into the trap of self-pity at this stage. I made the decision to breed both Libby and Jade, based on the fact that I had 32 names on my waiting list. I have learned a lesson, and will not make that mistake again! Next time, it will be deposits to show commitment, if I am going to breed more than one litter at a time.
Really the puppies are very good. They all take the travelling like seasoned professionals with no car sickness, or accidents in the crate. It’s just that the loading of dogs is a one to one and a half hour process at each end, and then the kennels at the departing end have to be cleaned and blankets put on to be washed so that they are ready for our next arrival.
To add insult to injury, not only is there basically an entire “extra” litter of puppies, I am also dealing with three dogs that hate each other, a dog that has come back and not found a new home, and an old dog that has become incontinent :( But I’ve been dealing with it.
Then this week turned out to be the week from hell. I had put an ad in the paper to hire someone to come in and look after the dogs mid-day. Only two responses, and the woman I hired (and gave my spare keys to) only showed up one day before heading to Toronto to take care of “personal stuff” with no notice (and no returning of the keys). So when I get home its a mad flurry of getting dogs out, cleaning kennels, washing floors, and blankets, and feeding. Unfortunately the young girls are bored and becoming destructive to boot :( I can’t even get them out for a walk in the woods because by the time I am done it is dark.
Thursday night I arrived home to torrential rain on top of the darkness. And to top it all off – I locked myself out of the house. Because said “care provider” had my only spare set – there has been NO time to get more cut!! – I was unable to use them to get in, and could not contact her by phone. Finally my boss drove out and was able to get in through a basement window to get me in.
So driving home last night, I was really beginning to question the wisdom of what I am doing. Why am I breeding dogs for people who really don’t care about the quality of the dogs they are buying, and end up buying the first dog to become available? Why am I bothering to health test, and spend money on using quality stud dogs, when people don’t really care about the pedigrees or whether their dog is “programmed” to live a long and healthy life, they just want a cute cheap puppy?
Then last night, on the way home, I had a reminder of why I do what I do. I have always maintained to my people that I am a 24/7 resource for them for advice and help So when one of my families contacted me saying their puppy had swallowed a magnet and what should they do, I immediately called and talked them through getting the offending item out of said puppy.
So thank you for reminding me why I do what I do. It is so that people who do care where their puppy comes from, and do wait and adopt a puppy from me, have someone to rely on for advice. Out of every negative experience comes a positive lesson, and thank you for providing the one I was needing last night!