Once your dog has recovered from his accident or illness, how will you keep him active and healthy? What changes will – or can – you make in your lives to ensure your dog’s happiness and welfare? The answer requires each dog owner to know his dog and to think creatively.
Since I have mostly recovered from being hit by the car, my parents often try to take me with them. They want to keep me busy and active and happy. But taking me with them is not always easy. Or safe.
For example, since I weigh almost 80 pounds, it’s not easy to take me with them in an airplane. I don’t fit in a little box that you can put under your seat.
It’s not always easy to take me with them when they go camping because they can’t leave me alone during the day when they go bicycle riding or boating, or whatever they do. Why not? Once or twice they left me on the leash and attached my lead to a post outside a store and when they came back outside, they saw the lead on the tree – - but the “other” end of the lead was lying on the ground: No Joey! Upon looking at the lead, they saw I had chewed through it! “Joey. Joey”, my dad called, and I appeared from beneath some nearby bushes.
Some of the hotels they go to will allow you to bring your dog, but you may not leave your pet alone during the day. So if they go bicycle riding or to play golf, they can’t take me with them. Maybe one day there will be a dog-friendly golf course? I doubt it!
I’m way too big to fit into a little basket like some dogs whose owners take them with them for the ride when they go bicycle riding.
In the summer, my mom runs errands and I’m not allowed to be alone for long in a car because dogs overheat very easily; many dogs die each year from heatstroke. So that’s out.
But since I was hit by the car, my parents want to keep me as active as possible, and as happy as possible.
So when can they bring me with them?
They can bring me with them when they play tennis.
First, my mom has her little doggie kit which is nice because it has a little bowl. They tie my lead to a little bench near the tennis court and near the water fountain. One week, it was a little hotter than usual. Soon my mom noticed that I was panting and my tongue was hanging out. She went to Robert, the court supervisor, who had a big shade umbrella, and asked him, “Would you mind if I put my dog here?” Robert was very nice and were very happy to have me there, sharing the shade of the umbrella.
The water-fountain was nearby and I was in the shade, and next to people who were nice. In fact, I was under the seat, which gave me even more shade. In the heat, my mom stopped occasionally to fill up the doggie bowl and pour cool water over me. Then she filled it up again and said, “Joey, drink.” And she waited until I would drink some water. She kept an eye on me to make sure that I wasn’t overheating, which is important because dogs overheat very easily, especially older dogs like me.
After tennis, we go right home and my parents give me a lot of water to drink and food to eat.