2009
 

First let me explain that not all the dogs get along.   Bear is arch enemy against Zelda.  He cannot be trusted around Charlie.  Other then that, mixing the rest in with any combination is normally fine.
 
It starts at 12:30 a.m. No, that's not the lunch hour!  I get up, slip into some shoes and flip on the yard lights.  Then I walk the 50 yards to the shop and leash up Keeton for his 'potty' walk. Pee comes quickly, about 50 yards, but the pooh takes several trips around the huge front yard.  After walking the length of several foot ball fields, we return to the shop where I add ice to his water (he loves the ice), give him some final hugs and tell him I'll see him in the morning.    Then I return to the house.   
  By now it is 1:30 a.m. and I'm wide awake.  I've lost my space on the bed so I check my email and play a little solitaire.  THE CAT arrives right around 3:30 a.m..  It's a stray that knows the dogs can't get to it so it just sits outside the fence and antagonizes them.  No one can resist, so the bed and house are vacated in one big swish as they all run outside to bark for 30 minutes.  I crawl back into bed and cover up my head with the pillow to muffle the noise.  Good thing we live in the country.
Loren gets up to go fishing at 4:30 a.m. Before he leaves he walks Keeton.  When he vacates the bed, Monkey, Sweetness and Georgia join me.  I pretend I am asleep and they usually settle down after nuzzling under the pillow to bite my ear and washing my face.   

Somewhere around 6:00 a.m. doggie play time starts.  As they all run out the door, I get up & put the slide in the doggie door so I can get dressed without being 'goosed'.  Getting dressed takes about 5 minutes.  I wash & dry the 13 dog food dishes that I was too worn out to wash last night. Everyone gets a measured amount of the same food, except for Faith. She gets 'grain free' food.  All stacked up, I carry them into the kitchen and begin adding the supplements and pills.  Charlie gets a heart pill & DGP in a hot dog because he picks around them.  The others get various combinations of  vitamins, supplements and medications.  Then a re-hydrated food additive is poured over the top of the pills.  Faith gets a non-grain formula.
 
   I get Katey & Bear in & close Faith out, feeding her outside & first because she would steal their food. Then Katey & Bear get theirs.  I put Sissy's bowl in the bedroom and Monkey's bowl in the laundry  room.  I hold Georgia's & Trevor's bowls while I open the door.  Everyone runs in.  Sissy and Monkey head straight for their rooms.  I get Trevor &Georgia back outside for their food.  I close the doggie door again as I come back in.  Close Sissy's door, close Monkey's door, set down Sweetness's then Zelda's then Charlie's bowls in their respective locations. 
Georgia finishes, then Sweetness & Monkey.  Monkey wants seconds, which he gets.  Sweetness is directed outside.  Sissy finishes & is directed outside.  Monkey finishes, then Charlie & Zelda finish & are all directed outside.  By now Trevor is finished & what he has not eaten, Georgia has polished off.  Faith & Katey have finished so I let Katey out.  Bear takes another 5 minutes to eat.  By now it is 7:15 a.m.

In the mean time, I take Keeton's food & a clean ice chest filled with bowl size ice down to the kennel.  I get Keeton, take him for a 10 minute walk.  Long enough to do his jobs.  Then I put him in the kennel.  I fill the wading pool  & the ice chest with fresh water. 

Bear is finished when I return to the house. I pick up all the food bowls. I let Katey back in to the dogs room but keep Faith out.  I clean & re-filling water bowls & ice chests.  In this warm weather, ice chests work great for keeping iced water cold.  Then I let Charlie outside to potty in the front.  He's old and kind of gets run over by the others. After waiting 10 minutes for him to 'choose a spot' I bring him in (which is never easy because he refuses to listen to me).  I put him into the bedroom where he will stay out of the heat with his chew bones.  Sissy gets to come in to the house.  The others are temporarily locked out.  By now it is 8:15 a.m.
 

I give Faith a mini bath in the wading pool. Then I let Bear, Katey & Faith into the house.  I clean the dog room.  Faith has bladder problems, so the room needs mopped twice a day.  It's not a simple task because the urine, water from the wading pool they play in and the mud they bring in requires changing the mop water 4 times.  I vacuum out the crates and once a week I wash the doggie pillow covers. Faith prefers the floor in warm weather so the dog pillows don't usually get 'wet'.  Remainder of the cleaning includes the sliding glass doors, tracks and the doggie door. And of course a good dusting..... The dust is unbelievable.
 
 
  It's now 9:30 a.m. and getting warm so Keeton comes up to the house and Trevor goes to the shop. (Trevor doesn't like Keeton)  I clean the ice chest and give him fresh water and some attention. Now it's ME time!  Loren usually has been out fishing and has just come home bringing donuts.  I indulge myself  for a few minutes and read the newspaper.   Loren goes to the shop to dink around and keep Trevor company.  The floor is dry in the dog room so I let the other dogs into that side so they can get in out of the heat.   I open the doggie door so Bear, Katey, Sissy and Faith can get out if they want.  I usually let Monkey and Georgia over to play with Faith.  

Then I go to the computer and check email.  I'm a 'long thinker' and perfectionist so answering the email takes much longer for me then most people.   By now it's 11:00 a.m.  Time to clean house.  I dust, vacuum and mop EVERY DAY.  I know, I could leave the dogs outside, but they are family.  I could leave the dust and dirt, but I'm proud of my home and even though people rarely come by, sure as I don't clean, someone will show up.  The cleaning process takes me to noon.  It would take longer but I mop and vacuum  around  the dogs.

Here the day varies.  Sometimes it's a vet appointment.  Sometimes grocery shopping.  Sometimes just making phone calls from home or working on websites or dog write-ups. Lunch falls in here too, but usually between 1:00 and 2:00  If and when we do leave the house, dogs are re-shuffled.  Keeton and Auneli go to the shop, Trevor comes up, Bear and crew go back to the dog room side and the others get access to the kitchen and the front yard.  Charlie is let out of the bedroom.

I guess I should explain that our house is divided as are 3+ fenced acres. Not all 12 are going to get along. Since all the dogs are 'family', even those for adoption, everyone gets time in the main part of the house with us at some point during the day or night.  Bear and Katey don't like Zelda, Trevor, Keeton or Auneli.  Trevor doesn't like Keeton or Auneli.  Bear and Faith pick on old Charlie who is sick and near blind. Sissy, Sweetness, Monkey and Georgia like everybody and everybody seems to tolerate them. 
 

Almost always home by 2:30 p.m., it's time to freshen all the water and add more ice.  Keeton and Auneli come back to the house and Trevor goes back to the shop.  I finish up things like laundry or change sheets and always poop scoop.  A few of the dogs are too lazy to go more then 10 feet from the deck.  Charlie goes on the deck if he's not let out the front. 

Then check email and relax for an hour.  Well, try to relax.  Sissy thinks meal time is calculated by her tummy which she always thinks is empty.  Trevor comes back up and Auneli and Keeton go back to the shop to eat.
 


5:00 p.m.
is as late as I can get away with.  I try to get everyone outside. I wash the food bowls which I didn't get to after breakfast.  Dish out the food.  Dinner is easier because we only have a few pills in the evening.  Place the bowls and open the doggie door and the breakfast routine is repeated. 

Everyone is finished by 5:30 p.m. and it's time to mop the dog room again.  As the weather cools, several of the dogs get walked (individually).  You'd think with all this land to run on they would be content, but the smells have got to be better on the other side of the fence.  By now it's 7:00 p.m. and time to shower.  The dogs are ready to play outside.  YEAH! 

One final email check and off to bed at 8:00 p.m. to watch some pre-recorded TV (can fit 3 one hour programs into an hour that way).  Then one final trip to the shop to take Keeton and Auneli for a walk to potty.  Lights out.... full moon....Bear barks and barks and barks.   Monkey and Georgia get onto the bed to give good night kisses before shooed off.  Sissy settles in on my feet to sleep and Sweetness shares my pillow.  It's 10:15 and I doze off.   At 10:30 something catches one of the 'patrol' dogs attention and "bark bark bark" in that special "calling all the troops" or "calling some of the troops".  Everyone or half of them all run out the doggie door.  Thud, flop, thud, flop, thud, flop, thud, flop, thud, flop. 

It's 5:15 a.m. as I write.  I've been up since 2:00 a.m.  Loren made Charlie go outside to potty in the back yard.  He will be off to fish in a few minutes.  I'll sneak back to bed and accept my morning kisses from Monkey and Georgia, then Monkey will curl up and lay with me until 6:00 a.m.
 

As the weather cools and before it freezes, life is easier.  The dogs can be left out more and less 'shuffling'.  Faith will be leaving soon.  I will miss her.  I don't even mind washing her hind end or the mopping.   Auneli will be going to her new home too, but she has hardly been here and is absolutely no trouble at all.  Trevor will be going back to Janice's in 3 weeks.  Same time Auneli leaves. Keeton will then stay at the house.  No more 'shop time'.  Empty kennels.  Is it possible to be happy with only 9 dogs?   Maybe the people with Gretel will let me have her.   I think about her tied to that tree, just waiting to die, yet smiling that silly Komondor/Pyr grin.  Another "Zelda" dog.  Another dog that needs love.  

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