We have the best kennel ever.  I won’t lie, geography is a huge positive.  It’s awesome that they’re right down the street, but it’s really the people who make it special.  Those folks love my dogs as much as I do, and believe me…Gracie and Phoebe know it. 

These two scamps spend time in doggy day care while they’re sleeping over at Mike’s place (as I like to put it), and without nanny cams I often find myself wondering where the real truth lies in how they did during their stay.

Doggy Day Care Report

me:  So…how’d the girls do?

sweet girl who works there:  Oh, they did great!  They’re such sweeties.

me:  Indeed they are, but they’re not above being troublemakers.  I do live with them, you know.

sweet girl:  Oh, no, they’re absolute dolls!  I mean, Gracie’s a bit of a scamp with food.  If anyone’s container is left open she’ll shove her head in and scarf it down.  We have to drag her out.

me:  That doesn’t surprise me in the least.  And how does Phoebe do?  Does she play with the other dogs?

sweet girl:  You know, funny enough, she doesn’t pay much attention to the other dogs.  She’ll play with Gracie a lot, but most of the time she’s following me around looking for a lap and some love.

me:  I know!  She’d be happiest if I’d just lie on the couch all day every day, loving on her.

sweet girl:  Well, they’re just sweet as can be.  We love having them here.


Doggy Day Care Reality (based on reports and educated guesses)

Sweet girl #1 opens kennel gates each morning and sends dogs into their runs so she can clean up.  Most flounce out happily…Gracie flops onto the floor in an act of nonviolent resistance, fighting freedom with every bit of her nearly 100 lb. furry frame.  Sweet girl #1 tries pushing Gracie across the floor and my dog face plants, splaying her front legs so they catch either side of the door.  Sweet girl #1 then pulls her front paws together, causing Gracie to drop her butt and splay her rear legs.

Sweet girl #1 surrenders, leashing Gracie and walking her around to the side yard.

Sweet girl #2 returns the dogs to their kennels for breakfast.  Phoebe attempts to crawl up her leg and lay across her shoulders, begging for love instead of food.  Gracie shoves her head into every kennel door, greeting her neighbors and checking out their food supplies.  She manages to steal two dogs’ breakfasts before being secured in her kennel where she smiles angelically up at sweet girl #2.

Doggy day care time arrives and the dogs come out to play.  Some gather in the yard, romping or resting in the shade.  Others hang out in the main room, playing chase and grinning happily.  Gracie kicks it with calmer dogs while Phoebe follows the sweet girls from room to room, rubbing up against their legs like a contented cat.  Every once in a while Gracie gets a spurt of energy, sumo wrestling with furry friends large and small, and the great dane lets out a resounding WOOF as he saunters through his space.

Through the course of the day Gracie manages to steal dog treats off counters, snuffle up crumbs, knock sweet girls sideways, eat grass in the yard, and lick enough dog hair off her paws to cough up a chihuahua-sized fur ball.

By end of day both girls are Worn Out.  Not so tired that Phoebe doesn’t want more lap time with her human lovies, and not so tired that Gracie doesn’t steal more dog food on the way back to her kennel.  But weary enough that they’ll crash for the night, ready to wake bright and early for another day’s fun.