Earlier this fall, James took an extended business trip, and the pups and I were left to our own devices for four whole weeks. All Kari All The Time.
Here’s some things you need to know before we move on:
-Owning two dogs– parenting two dogs– is much easier with four hands. It’s an extra person to hold the leash, to scoop the food, to rub the bellies, or to tag out when training gets to be frustrating.
-Our dogs love James more. Given the choice between snuggling with me or snuggling with him, he always wins. Yes, yes, it’s not a competition. Whatever. But I do walk away feeling a bit chopped-liverish when I’ve taken them on an adventure, rewarded them with treats, and hauled out the pool for afternoon lounging, only to have James walk through the door and they react as though I’ve tortured and ignored them.
– We have a routine that allows for a fairly equal distribution of labor. It is rare that schedule goes out the window. This trip blew up the schedule.
Right. So. Four weeks without James. We had set ourselves up a fairly ambitious schedule of home improvements and CGC prep-training. And every day, James received photo updates and emails from the dogs (yep) about how things were going.
First, they were confused by his absence, looking longingly out the windows for his return.
Then, they mourned him.
…Even though adventures were continuing in his absence.
Before long, they got clingy, helping me get ready for work or checking up if they lost sight of me for a few minutes.
We broke a few rules… (sorrynotsorry).
He might have missed them more than he missed me.
But seriously, they were rockstars. They were flexible when work ran long (no accidents in the house). They were respectful when we took big adventures on our own. They helped out with house chores (I wish I had took pictures when I put Swiffer wipes on Zozo’s tail. You’ll just have to trust me) and yard work. They sang along or talked back as I prattled on when making everyone dinner. They were their typical loving, well-behaved, mildly-spoiled selves. But it was weird.