I'm a dog person, I've stated that before and I'll say it again. This is my weakness you could say. Although I wish you wouldn't say it that way, because I don't consider it a weakness. They're just my soft spot.
I've told matt for years that I want to be able to have lots of land, and lots of dogs. That's my wish. Right now we only have one dog, but Matt's promised me that we can get a second one in 2010. (when the baby's 2) I've already got one picked out. We're going to get a husky next. That's actually the dog matt's always wanted, and everytime I see one for sale in the classified ads, it's very hard for me not to call and say "I'll take you home!" actually almost every dog I see in the classifieds I feel that way about.
That being said, I'd like to tell a little story about something going on right now. My sister and her family (4 kids, ranging from ages 6-4months) recently acquired 2 dachshunds. They're both 2 years old, purebred, one male, one female, and quite cute. We had a dachshund growing up, and loved it. The problem with these dogs though, is nothing to do with the dogs. In my opinion. Her husband also had a dachshund growing up so they were very excited to get these dogs for free.
About 2 weeks after they got the dogs, they became outside dogs. I don't think ANY dog should be an outside dog. That's my personal belief, but like I said, I have a VERY soft spot for dogs. But I'm very against small dogs being outside dogs. Big dogs, I can understand. Dogs under 10 lbs, I can't for the life of me understand why.
This is why they became outside dogs. 1: The got into the bathroom trash and shredded a diaper. 2: my sister wouldn't see them waiting by the door to go outside (they are house broken) and so they'd have accidents in the house.
I can see getting upset about both those things. But is that really the dogs fault? If you leave cookies out on the counter, and they get eaten, who's fault is it? Dogs like garbage. I don't know why, but they do. and if they aren't given their normal option of relieving themselves outside, they have to go somewhere right? a child would do the same thing.
The problem I'm having with this situation, and it's really, really bothering me (I cried about it for about 1/2 hour today, with matt and then with my dad, trying to find a solution) is that they aren't planning on bringing this dogs inside for the winter. This very night, those dogs are tied up on 6 foot (if that) leashes, with a wet blanket from the rain yesterday to sleep on, and a crate that isn't big enough for 2 dogs, in the corner of the yard. they are reaching the point of neglect. Being who I am, I can't take it. It was hard enough for me to leave their house today, and not take them with me.
Because of the things they did when they were house dogs, they've been banished. My sister's husband, when questioned about bringing them in this winter so they don't freeze to death, seemed to not care--he does NOT want them back in the house.
so of course, I said "I'll take them for you!". He really liked that idea.
I talked to matt. "what do you think about dog sitting?" "Jenni's dogs?" "yup" "for how long?" "um, all winter?" and with a look of disbelief "no"
then after explaining the situation to him (after we left my sisters, because I'm pretty emotional about it all) he said, "well, let's talk to your dad first, and see if he'd be willing to take them for the winter". This was a genius idea on his part, because my family (or who's left, my parents, and 14 year old sister) leave all summer, while he's the LDS chaplain at a boy scout ranch in New Mexico. They can't have a dog, and it breaks his heart I think. He's never really been without a dog, and really misses our last dog, (and only) who died about 3 years ago, while he was gone for the summer. so if we could convince him to take the dogs for the winter and "dog-sit" so they could be indoors, then I would be much happier, and the dogs would too! at least they'd live! Shoot, even if my sister didn't want to take them back at the end of the winter, I'd take them and "dog-sit" them for my dad, and they could become his dogs. He'd love that!!
I went to my parents earlier this evening to explain the situation to them, and see what they'd be willing to do, and of course, cried my eyes out, because things like this make me cry. He had another option. He knows a lot about dachshunds, he also had one growing up, and they're his favorite breed of dog. He said that they can survive outside. But they need some place warm and dry that they can use. And they still need to be played with, and given attention and affection, not just put in a dog run and given food and water 2 times a day. They like to burrow he said, and so if they have a large crate, you can insulate (kinda) the inside with carpet squares, put a lot of blankets in there, and a small light, which will emit just enough warmth for them, and they should be ok outside. The question is, whether or not they would get played with. I'm not sure they would. Her family just moved here from florida, and are warm blooded.
He was rather upset when I explained the whole situation to him as well, and I don't blame him! I'm REALLY upset about it! apparently our dachshund did the same things when we had her, but you just have to teach them. I've taught Indy to stay out of the garbage, and to stay away from certain things, and house-trained her. It's a matter of putting forth the effort, and they aren't really willing to do that with their dogs.
they have a garage they could use a corner of for the dogs, that's at least out of the elements, but they don't. It breaks my heart to see little dogs like that, it really does.
My parents agreed to talk to my sister on friday, when she's there for dinner, and see if they could come up with a solution. and if not, them I'm taking the dogs, and they will become my dogs. So if you see me walking around this winter with 3 dogs, and a huge belly, you'll know why, because this is what living like this does to me.