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"In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semihuman.
The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog."
- Edward Hoagland
We wake up our dogs calmly and quietly at about 7:00 am. After a quick run in the back yard, dogs return to the kennel rooms for the morning meal. Meals are always provided individually. At about 8:00am, the big backyards come to life with social pack play.
By mid-morning, the 3 acre fenced terrain park will be opened to one pack at a time. The dogs run, play, explore the willowbrush and grassy meadows of the great outdoors. We throw Frisbees and lacrosse balls in the big corral. Lots of lead-walking takes place in the lower meadow and arena, teaching dogs to follow and respond while in open spaces.
By late morning, after hours of play, most of the dogs are ready for a “dog” nap. This creates a natural, midday quiet time that usually lasts until early afternoon. After naptime, most of the active dogs re-engage for another rambunctious play session that usually lasts until they hear their supper being prepared.
By late afternoon the dogs are separated into their individual dens to give them a chance to settle down in preparation for dinner. The dogs continue to stay separated for a while after they eat, so they can digest their food prior to the upcoming evening romp that lasts until bedtime.
At the end of the day, the dogs are happy, tired and ready for bed. They are tucked in about 9:00 pm.
During the colder seasons, the dogs are rotated in and out of their dens in order to stay warm, dry and safe.
THE SMITHS know the importance of distinguishing between our big rambunctious sporting and working dogs and those who need special care. We have a place in our home for young, small and special needs dogs. In most cases, our smaller clients bunk in warm and cozy kennel dens in the small dog den room attached to a small dog outdoor play area. This offers them an opportunity to be in a pack, to play with other dogs in a structured and predictable routine. While all of our dogs receive family-style treatment, some are needful of a more “indoor” or sedate daily experience. In some cases we have dogs that stay in the house while they are here. We assess your dog’s condition and special needs on a case-by-case basis. This isn’t a problem for us. This is the reason we started our business in the first place.
So, while the big, active field dogs and working dogs are playing hard and running free in the lower meadow, the little ones are safe and sound under our watchful care, snoozing, playing, and enjoying the constant attention they receive. No need to fear your little one being run underfoot with the big dogs. At THE SMITHS, there’s lots of room and lots of love for all our dogs.