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Dog Sitting – Double Puppy Trouble

by TerriAnn
Double Trouble - Dog Sitting Is Not Easy

Dog / Puppy Sitting Affected By Size, Demeanor, & Training…

My neighbor was going away for a few days and asked if my daughter (really meaning me) would watch her dog, Mimi. Of course, without a second thought, I said, “Sure she will!” The dog we watched was sweet but never again. It’s a lot of work taking care of someone else’s dog!

I think the major issues we experienced were due to different training and the size difference, which kind of go hand-in-hand. Having a larger dog requires that we train her very well. Otherwise, Speckles would knock people down, pull us all over the place, destroy things, etc. With little dogs, they pretty much can do anything and it’s not really an issue for most owners. That was the case for us.

Double Trouble - Dog Sitting Is Not Easy

We found out that, aside from ‘sit’, Mimi didn’t seem to know any other commands despite her being about two years old. This made so many things more difficult. Eat, drink, water, stay, down, drop, come, fetch, pee, no, lie down, no jumping, etc. were foreign to her. As the owner is a single, older woman, Mimi also didn’t know how to play and hid all the time. In two days, we taught her new tricks, how to heal, and gave her confidence to play like the puppy she is.

When taking her for a walk, Mimi went any which way she pleased. “Heel” was not in her vocabulary as she pulled as much as she could, walking at an angle most of the time. We let her off-leash to run on the grassy area and that little white puffball took off down the pathway. Hearing her name or saying ‘come’ didn’t phase her in the slightest. I was freaking out that she’d completely run away or get hit – a sitter’s worst nightmare. Fortunately, she stopped at the building’s front gate and stayed there. Needless to say, we didn’t let her off-leash after that.

It was also important for us to set guidelines from the get-go. Mimi had to understand where she could and could not go, not to jump on the furniture, and to not lick our faces (that just grosses us out). With a little patience, she did very well.

It also complicated things because Speckles is so dominant and the cattle dog in her was really coming out. She kept bonking Mimi with her head and Mimi usually went in her crate or was laying under something so Speckles couldn’t pounce on her. Yes, that meant we had to do some extra training with Speckles as well and to teach her to leave poor Mimi alone. Plus, Speckles is a clumsy, oversized oaf and Mimi often got trampled underfoot unintentionally.

Having another dog also set off our normal routine and family dynamic. We had double the poop-scooping, feeding, belly-rubbing, whining for attention, and fur bit floating around. Kudos to those that do this for a living. No wonder they charge and upwards of $30 for a day and $60 for overnight boarding! As for us? I think we’ll have to end our doggy sitting days unless we know the dog we’re watching well, it’s very well-trained, and can’t be terrorized by our over-bearing 57-lb lap dog.

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Mellisa April 17, 2013 - 1:45 pm

That’s so nice of you to help out!

Marcie W. April 17, 2013 - 2:12 pm

You’re so sweet! I could never imagine asking any of our neighbors, or even anyone other than family, to dog sit for us. I’m happy everything worked out well for you in the end!

Angela April 17, 2013 - 2:33 pm

So cute! I always pay a dog sitter to stay at my house when we go on vacation. My dogs are not very well behaved and I wouldn’t send them over to destroy somebody else’s house. 🙂

rachel @runningrachel April 17, 2013 - 4:01 pm

So cute!

Dog Aggression Training by Jim April 17, 2013 - 5:45 pm

Taking care of someone else’s dog is not easy sometimes. Of course they’re not yours so normally, you have no idea what behavior the dog has. But anyway, I am glad you handled it well.


Maryann April 17, 2013 - 6:00 pm

OMG how cute are they.

Sheilacakes April 17, 2013 - 8:03 pm

What a sweetheart you are for helping out.

Meghan @JaMonkey April 17, 2013 - 8:09 pm

I can’t watch others dogs. Mine likes to eat them! I always have an excuse

Leilani April 17, 2013 - 9:01 pm

That’s so nice of you to dog sit. I won’t watch any other dog but mine. And truth be told, she’s not trained and doesn’t know any commands aside from sit.

Shell Feis April 18, 2013 - 3:05 am

It’s hard too because dogs get stressed when their owners are away. That was very nice of you to help out though!

Amy April 18, 2013 - 3:05 am

That is so nice of you to dog sit, made so much harder by an untrained dog. Your perseverance taught the dog some new tricks though which can only be a good thing. Good job she wasn’t any bigger!

Crystal @ Simply Being Mommy.com April 18, 2013 - 10:29 am

It was incredibly kind of you to help out. But dogs are a lot of work, that’s for sure.

Jennifer @TheRebelChick April 18, 2013 - 2:15 pm

Dogs are so much work! We are to the point where my daughter is the only one who takes good care of our dogs when I travel. No more dog-sitters for us!

LyndaS April 18, 2013 - 6:39 pm

It is surprising how expensive it is to board a dog. I have two and fortunately I have found a good place that will let them stay in the same run and give me a discount.

Theresa April 18, 2013 - 9:37 pm

Dogs are so much work, but worth it eh?

Anne - Mommy Has to Work April 19, 2013 - 9:58 am

This is one reason I’m not ready for a dog. They are a lot of work!

Rachel @ following in my shoes April 19, 2013 - 2:07 pm

That sounds stressful! I hope your neighbor adequately thanked you. 🙂

Sheri April 19, 2013 - 3:12 pm

You’re very kind to take one two dogs!

Colleen April 19, 2013 - 8:24 pm

Cute and how nice of you!

Lolo April 19, 2013 - 9:25 pm

That was really nice of you to help!

Penelope (NYC Blogger) April 20, 2013 - 10:54 am

I’m not sure I’d watch anyone’s dogs, a lot of work!

April Golightly April 20, 2013 - 7:06 pm

I would not do it either, but I love my baby!

Donna April 20, 2013 - 8:50 pm

Dog sitting can be hard work, for sure.

Kelly @ A Girl Worth Saving April 20, 2013 - 9:49 pm

Aw, I would have a really hard time dog sitting with my dog also.

Robin {Mom Foodie} April 21, 2013 - 6:36 pm

Yeah, not a big fan of ankle biters. I’ll stick with German Shepherds I think.

Lisa April 21, 2013 - 8:34 pm

Regardless, you did a good deed!

Toni April 28, 2013 - 3:13 pm

That was so sweet of you to do. I couldn’t imagine taking care of another persons dog my two are a handful enough LOL

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