Camp Run-A-Pup Tails

Sometimes you feel like a snowflake! Love Mak and his family--this picture fits the weather-not the post!

Camp Run-A-Pup Tails.

There is nothing like being in the family pet business if you are looking to tell a few odd stories. As I was purging camp files the other day, I began to reminisce about a few of my campers who only came to camp once, or not even once.

Buddy Bo arrived for a pre-camp visit late one afternoon with his owner mom and two twins about the age of 5. Buddy was a mild-mannered beagle with a pleasant personality. The twin boys were as wild as March hares. As Buddy Bo’s mom and I chatted, the twins took off for our trampoline. After our visit wrapped up, the mom called her boys and I realized we had a problem. Her kids did not come when called.  I climbed up on the side of the trampoline to herd them off but they came at me like two wild animals kicking and biting. I backed off, and the mom assured me they would come off when they were ready. Did I mention the kids were screaming and jumping? We were stilling waiting for the twins to “be ready” when Joe returned home. When the end clearly was not in sight, and bribes of candy, coke, and suggestions of using the bathroom did not work, Joe panting and sweating forcibly removed the twins from our trampoline in a dual head lock. The mom was insulted, threatened to sue us if we hurt her children, and was clear that she would not be leaving Buddy Bo with us. Feeling very sorry for Buddy Bo, we sent them all home and treated Joe for multiple scratches.

It was Christmas day. We were very busy with Christmas-y things, but I still indulged one owner (who called every day, multiple times) by bringing her pup to the phone for a chat with Mommy. I had to clink the pup’s tags with a spoon so “Mommy could make sure her precious was close enough to the phone to fully hear her.” They chatted for about 5 minutes or so. When she called for the second time on Christmas day, (and if I did not answer the phone, she called repeatedly leaving hysterical messages) I answered the phone, but before I could bring the camper up for his visit with his mommy, Joe motioned me to stop.  He grabbed a spoon and a glass. I caught on immediately. I held the phone down, Joe clinked the glass lightly with the spoon several times, and the owner and her precious fur had a very nice talk. I never accepted another reservation.

One afternoon, I received a call from a prospective client who told me his dog had issues with other dogs, hated children, barely tolerated men, could not be crated, and was extremely aggressive with food and toys. I explained to the owner that our Camp was a very social environment, and I had a young son and a husband. The owner immediately went on to reassure me that his dog would do great at Camp with me; it was my son, husband and other dogs that would be the problem. I regretfully turned down the reservation.

Debbie came to camp more than once, but my family often wished she hadn’t. Debbie, a rat terrier, was rescued by a young school teacher and her son. Debbie’s original owner had died and the rescue organization had been less than honest with Debbie’s adoptive family about her ornery disposition, eye and skin issues, and other health problems. However, on a school teacher’s budget, the single mom and her son did their best for Debbie. When they traveled for two weeks during the summer, Debbie camped with me. She hated Joe. She hated Cole. She hated other dogs. She barked unless she was with me, and she peed in the house. She also itched a lot and had oily skin. I loved Debbie and she adored me. I think we were best friends in another life. My family loathed her and counted the days until her visit ended. Joe would often say, “We don’t get paid enough to keep that dog.”  Little did he know we did not get paid at all.

The campers that do camp with us are the best, and those that don’t provide me with a lot of great storytelling material!

Tell me about your precious furs … What do you love best about them?

Glad you were in my Odd neighborhood. Feel free to drop by any time. I would love to hear from you in the comment section of this blog, or on Facebook or Twitter!

★~♥~♥~★~  ♥~★~★~♥ ~


18 thoughts on “Camp Run-A-Pup Tails

  1. Ok so we are not as odd about our dog as I gave us credit for being…those kids needed to be crated!
    You have always had a soft spot for terriers…Nancy lucked out and so did her family…

    Your the best! Love Camp Run-A-Pup! Happy Holidays.

  2. How funny and I know the stories only tip the surface. People and their pets produce a life time of good stories.

    Thanks for giving me a laugh on an otherwise gloomy day.


  3. I found Joe’s solution so typical of the nature of the people on the NW side. It truly reminds me of Hillary Clintons book It Takes A Village. I find it so entertaining! Parents all over our community growing up on the NW side of Chicago had authority if they told you to jump you said ” how hi sir” ? A child would never refuse the request of an adult. Time to go would never been said twice. Never! Those kids were lucky it was Joe and not my Dad.

    • Well… I think he wanted to give the kids a couple of hard cracks on the butt–but I think his grip on there heads made his point. The same was true in my neighborhood–kids did not ignore there parents. The same is true in my home…although I allow more conversation (read-arguing) than Joe would have allowed.

  4. I believe that you are in this business because you are doing what you love to do. But your liablity would be real if you dont take care not to let dogs come in and fight, bite or mawl everyone including your own human family and your visiting campers. My dogs are spoiled. They are jealous. What animals arent? But like kids, they have to get along. My dogs though are only agressive if you start to harm me. I have seen them stand between me and people at the door. Not biting or anything. Just gently pushing me back into the house for safety. I have one big one, one old terrier, and my little Chiapom and all protect. I love them so much. (chiauwau ? and small Pom) Good luck with the Christmas guest you will have Katybeth. I am sure that at your house there is never a dull moment.

  5. Yhea–I am attached to all my family members and strive not to let my campers eat one another–I tell people I’m the Queen of my peaceful kingdom and my campers and own pups “get it.” In other words–If the leader (me) is not happy nobody is happy.
    Your pups sound like a great pack, Kathy. Its nice to feel taken care of….
    Never a dull moment, and since I do love what I do–each moment is welcome.

  6. Love Mak–he seems like he has a lot of personality. I think you should have told the guy you would keep his dog–if your husband and kid could go on vacation with him! What a fruitcake!

    Merry Christmas!

  7. Love the photo and the doggie tales. Wish you were close by so my pup could spend some time with you. He’s the greatest and very smart. Just this morning he alerted us to the fact that his food bowl was not filled to his satisfaction! Hugs, Diane

  8. Hi Katybeth:

    Fun post…although Joe didn’t have fun with those little brats!

    I love our Jake because the minute I lie down on the couch to watch TV, he jumps up on me, and insists on having his head right up under my chin! If I’m not petting him, he butts my hand with his nose until I do! I think he misses his mommy while I’m gone (he loves his daddy just as much!).


    • No they never love there daddy’s just as much…Mom is everything…but its nice you acknowledge that Jake does love his daddy–because of-course he does…just not as much. Jake sounds like a cutie!

  9. Wow–you and your family must have patience of steel by now! I think I’d go crazy in some of the situations you describe. I’m half laughing, half tensed up! =)

    • Hi Jenna!
      We are pretty patient….but we usually laugh afterwards–sometimes a long time afterwards. The lady who called me 5 times a day–it took me a very long time to find her funny–although I did find the bratty kids funny quicker than Joe did….Most of our clients and there pups are so so wonderful it makes up for the others.

      Thanks for stopping by Odd!

  10. Wonderful stories! Those twins…YOWSAH!

    I know Miss Piggy would love your pup camp, even though she wouldn’t want to do anything except hang around you and hope you’d drop some crumbs.

  11. What an absolutely lovely post! I admire you and your family so much. Hilarious story about the rat terrier. Thank you! I tweeted this post because I think a lot of other people can use some holiday cheer!

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