Weekly Woot & Grumble: To Swap A Hound
Although she deems it unfair, Mr. Tikhvinskoe and I do travel without Frugal Hound from time to time. And when we do, we never pay to board her. In fact, we’ve never paid for her to stay anywhere. How could this be? (And, no, we do not leave her home alone or with a rogue band of squirrels.)
Rather, we’ve tapped into the amazingly interconnected,
nosy, helpful, and sweet network of Dog People. Early on in our ownership of the Hound, we realized that everyone wants to talk about their dog with you and your dog. It’s great! I now have an epic repository of dog-related knowledge (which would be useful if Frugal Hound was a regular dog and not the odd little house-deer greyhound that she is).
Other people with dogs also need places for their dogs to stay when they vacation and so, we swap dogs! This has resulted in us feeling a bit like a doggie motel at times, but, for the most part it’s fantastic. Every time we travel, we know Frugal Hound will have a safe, fun, and free place to stay.
In addition to the obvious financial benefits, it’s vastly more enjoyable for her. Frugal Hound is a timid, scaredy-hound and we think she’d be terrified in a noisy kennel. Furthermore, our girl is a large and silent beast with a penchant for the creature comforts of a snuggly blanket and a quiet home. Loud noises, disruption, and following directions are really not her thing.
In addition to our local neighborhood dog park Dog People, we lucked out in adopting a greyhound. Turns out, people with greyhounds are obsessed with greyhounds (not that I can relate to that in the least…). Consequently, we’re members of the most hilarious, friendly, and generous greyhound-lovers group on Facebook where people can post if they’re in need of a hound-sitter. On several occasions, we’ve babysat stranger’s greyhounds. It’s a wonderful community to depend on and we’re happy to help out our fellow greyhound fanatics. Plus, it’s worth it for the photos alone. Where do you think Frugal Hound’s blog-dog-model career started?
We trust our Dog People to watch after Frugal Hound in a gentle manner and to treat her like their own dog. Plus, it’s SUPER convenient. There are no drop-off or pick-up times and, when we’ve had delayed flights or other issues, our friends don’t mind keeping her for another day.
If you have a dog and haven’t tapped into your local Dog People network, do it now!
The Top 7 Tikhvinskoe Dog Sitting Misadventures:
- The time Frugal Hound ate another dog’s special puppy food and gave herself severe indigestion.
- The greyhound who refused to sleep anywhere but in bed next to me. Specifically, with me spooning her. Thankfully Frugal Hound sleeps on the floor in her own hound bed.
- The way Frugal Hound attempts to boss around our guest dogs by taking their toys and laying on top of them.
- The way the guest dogs usually outfox Frugal Hound by doubling back and stealing toys (easy to do; she’s not the brightest bulb).
- The time a male greyhound accidentally peed on Frugal Hound while on a walk (best part? Frugal Hound didn’t even notice).
- The time another greyhound growled at me for trying to sit on our couch next to him. He was splayed out and didn’t want to share. We compromised by putting his head on my lap.
The time someone showed up at our door with their dog at 7am on a Tuesday and Mr. Tikhvinskoe and I froze. We’d completely forgotten we’d offered to watch their terrier for the week. And by forgotten, I mean it had literally fallen out of our brains and down the drain. We recovered quickly and had an extra dog for the week.
The Northeast was walloped by a nor’easter earlier this week and Miss Frugal Hound was expressly not a fan. I opened the door yesterday morning for our daily 6am walk and she balked. Head bent, legs outreached, claws menacing my hardwood floor, she was not having it. I coaxed her out and she eventually did her business, but she wasn’t happy about it.
When Mr. Tikhvinskoe took her out last night, she skittered around the park in fear of the wind. She’s dreadfully terrified of the wind and rain (she thinks it’s hitting her) and came back into the house full of panic. The one upside for her is that she adores the post-rain towel-off rub down. It’s a pretty good hound massage and she grunts in approval.
How do you handle pet care when you travel? Have you ever forgotten you’d offered to babysit someone’s pet/plant/child (please tell me I’m not the only one…)?
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