I spent the first 8 weeks of my life I’ve on a farm. There were kids, horses and other dogs. I thought life was grand until…
Darkness hovered. Rain soaked us. Thunder boomed. That should have been an indication life was about to change.
“What’s happening?” Piper barked.
“I don’t know,” I barked back. “Where do you think we’re going?”
Before we had a chance to answer our questions, we were scooped up and put in a car. After an hours drive, we sheltered in a bus stop and waited.
In the midst of howling wind and rain drops, my first human passed me to another human and abandoned me. I quivered and whined.
We’re loaded into a different car. The stress of the event had taken its toll. Even though Piper was the smallest dog I’d ever seen, we took comfort in each other. I put my leg around her and whispered, “Everything will be okay.”
Two hours later, we arrived at our destination. There were more people and one huge dog. My duty was to protect Piper, but look at the size of Murphy.
We held our ground. Murphy sniffed and pranced until we understood he was the boss – and seven years later, he still is.
But life was not all terrifying that day. Look how happy Kristina was to hold me for the first time.
Victoria is a magic place in British Columbia. In winter, the beaches are dog friendly. Yup, you heard that right. I can run off leash wherever I want.
You see my friend Piper. She’s the border terrier going crazy in the sand. The sand here is not like the sand in The Bahamas. The smell is a bit funky. I’m told that’s kelp. Now kelp is also slimy, so why would Piper want to roll in it?
Murphy is much more dignified. He understands the proper behaviour is to wade slowly into the water, stand tummy deep and gaze thoughtfully at the horizon. Piper, well, I don’t think she does anything thoughtfully, but I love her anyway. She part of my FFL pack.
We landed at a camping site north of Lake Superior on the Ontario side, and a squirrel ran by. The dogs, of course, wanted to chase it.
While we got the campsite ready, we leashed the dogs – keeping the squirrel population safe.
Forty-five minutes later, with no sighting of the squirrel, we let the dogs off-leash. The second we were free, they sprinted to the tree the squirrel was hiding in, and circled its base. The squirrel remained safe, but our dogs were doing their duty and protecting us from this scary forest monster.
Before being let off-leash, the dogs sat waiting by the picnic table, pretending they weren’t interested in anything. Did they trick us? Is it their nature to be strategic? . . . Or, were they resigned to being on a leash and saw no point in reacting until they were free?
Your guess is as good as mine.
I love the entertainment a dog provides our family!
Three adults, three kids and three dogs in one mini-van make it through 2000 km of driving.
Murphy (Rottweiler), Piper (Boarder Terrier) and Farley (Wheaten Terrier) get crammed into the van.
Murphy is clearly the alpha as he is in most situations. Farley and Piper are fairly even in the pack, but I think Farley is a little higher in the pack order.
Murphy and Piper met Farley in Winnipeg. The dogs went for a long off-leash romp before we put them in the car together. Any pack issues had to be worked out before they were in the van with the kids.
Each has its own type of food. When I was a kid, the dogs ate whatever we had. It wouldn’t have occurred to us to bring three kinds of food for three dogs. Add in leashes, bowls, grooming kit, towels and poop bags and they need room for their gear.
In the hot summer weather, we made sure we had enough water in the car for all three. Keeping everyone (including the kids) happy meant water and food on a regular basis. The dogs didn’t want to eat until we were settled in the campground and ate less than they normally do.
Murphy saved throwing up until he was in the tent and the suitcase was open. Gotta love the glamour that comes with dog ownership.
Dealing with an alpha male brings its own challenges.
Murphy drank first, then the other two had access to the water.
Murphy got in the car first, then the other two.
You get the idea.
It was a great trip. Would I do it again? You bet. Travelling with a pack is a riot.
Mother nature can provide free toys. This lab, retriever and rottweiler have figured out how to play nice together.
Even when we gave Chica, Henna and Murphy one stick each, they all wanted the same one. And aren’t they proud.
My only caution about this toy nature gave us. They are sharp and can hurt the dog. Be careful when throwing a stick. It can land with one end in the ground and the other pointing into the air. The pointy end can stab the dog.
We picked up Farley, our wheaten terrier, when he was 8 weeks old. My sister-in-law picked up Piper, 8 week old border terrier, the same day.
On our 2 hour ride home, the pups decided to sleep together. Pretty cute. When they arrived home they were greeted by Murphy, a rottweiler, whose home they entered. Just to be on the safe side, we introduced the dogs outside. Poor Murphy was invaded by puppies for a week. Piper stayed with him, and Farley came home with us.
My only caution is not to leave the dogs alone when they are that young and new to each other. At one point, Farley grabbed Piper by the neck. Quick action by brother prevented any harm from being done, but it did remind us to be careful.
Now look how they get along. Farley looks like he wants to hold hand with Murphy . . .