My mom really is our only option for taking care of Bella when we are away. She's the only one who can reliably touch Bella (mostly) and, better yet, she doesn't even have to. Since Mom has a fenced-in-yard, she really only has to tolerate playing Bella's doorman, not actually get a leash on her and take her for a walk.
But Bella comes with a rather substantial list of notes, a bagful of trinkets, treats and toys and an instructional video on "The Care and Feeding of Bella". (Okay, I made that last part up. But just barely.)
To fully appreciate what I put my mom through, I thought I'd share with you what I packed for a 3-night stay and the list of instructions sent along with the crazy dog. Not everyone would be as accommodating and patient with us.
|Care and Feeding Instructions|
Bella gets a little less than half a cup of dry kibble and a tablespoon or two of canned mixed with a little water 2x/day.Pills:
The pills in the pill box go in her meals. The box is marked for AM and PM. She should just eat them up but check her bowl after she has finished to make sure she did. (She knows "Finish your breakfast/dinner" if she didn't.)Drops:
The ‘liquid’ medicine is only given in the morning. Fill it to the 55 pound mark and just add it to her breakfast.Treats:
Chicken (home-made): Bella will expect a couple/few pieces of chicken jerky after meals. She will not let you forget to give them to her. These can be used for “Trade” if necessary. They should be kept in the fridge.Thunder cape:
We have packed Bella’s Storm Defender cape. It will help calm her down in the event of a storm but should be used with the Clonidine mentioned above. It’s best to get her in her cape and medicated a half hour before the storm if possible but that hardly ever happens. If this doesn't work, try the basement. Otherwise, pray for sun. :|Contact info:
We are staying at .... You can reach me at ... I will get an email if I miss your call and call you back as soon as I can. Jan will have the cell phone and that number is ... Bella's primary vet is ...
So, thanks Mom. We really couldn't do this without you and your patience with me and our crazy dog is appreciated in ways you can't even imagine.
PS - I had an interesting breakfast conversation with Debbie Jacobs from fearfuldogs.com while at BlogPaws about why my mom may be the only one Bella will let touch her. We have an idea and just need the PhD student willing to investigate. Know any? Put us in touch.
In the meantime, if you don't have your very own Camp Nana's, Debbie's recent post on what to look for when considering boarding options for your dog is definitely worth the read.