My husband, Ken, and I spent 10 days on vacation away from home, and from our two very high maintenance dogs, Penny and Ruben. They have special routines – food, pills, shots… and to make it worse, they can tell time. If you are late with a morning snack or, heaven forbid, dinner, you will hear about it.
So, a break was good. We sort of started missing them toward the end of our trip. Just about the time when the texts started coming from our adult kids: “ Can you dog-sit this weekend?”
We rolled our eyes, and said “Yes, of course.“
We were picked up from the airport by our son with his dog, Jager, who immediately made himself at home on Ken’s lap. Then we were driven to our daughter’s house where we were greeted by her dog, Bella, who did a very impressive happy dance for us.
Then we came home. Our dogs were not impressed that we arrived with two dogs in tow. Their looks said, “Really? This is what you left us for?” Ruben retreated to hide under our bed to pout and penny tried to adjust. End result – 4 dogs who followed me everywhere.
I had to remind myself that:
- Our kids trust us with their babies;
- these are lucky dogs. We have A/C and our kids don’t;
- it’s nice to be needed by your kids, no matter how old they are; and finally,
- maybe if we do a good job they will let us babysit real grandkids someday;
That’s my story anyway. We were glad when the weekend was over and we went back to having just two dogs instead of four, but I have to admit – and don’t tell anyone – I sort of enjoyed having my grandpups around.
Betty Lochner is a communication specialist, author, and professional speaker who teaches individuals and organizations how to make small changes that make huge differences in their relationships at work and home – improving morale, confidence and productivity. She is the author of Dancing with Strangers: Communication skills for transforming your life at work and at home and 52 Communication Tips. Both are also available on Amazon.com.