How many routines do you have in your life that involve your dogs? I can think of seven daily habits at our house. My main point here is that dogs have a very well-developed sense of what time it is, relative to what you are going to do for them!
At our house, here are the routines.
- We let the dogs out first thing, into their small yard. During the day the gate from the small yard is open so they have the run of a much larger yard, but overnight they just get the small area so they don’t wake up our elderly neighbors. If we don’t get out of bed early enough, LarryDog is likely to bark to let us know that it is daytime already!
- Once I get up, I wash my face and all that, and then I feed the…. cats! No, not the dogs first. Anyone with a Siamese or part-Siamese as ours is, may experience the incessant yowling that goes with a hungry kitty. Well, that doesn’t take long and then I do feed the dogs.
- After Kelly has had his tea and read for a while, he takes the dogs out for a walk in the desert behind our house, about half an hour. If it’s really cold and he decides to check his email first, there are sighs, groans, and other canine complaints. (While they are out, I play with the cats with a toy birdie that gives them some good stretching exercise. If I am late starting because I am already into my email, the cats take up their positions in the living room!)
- The afternoon walk is my job, and I do vary the time. The dogs watch me like a hawk all afternoon, just in case.
- We feed the dogs (again after the cats!) just before dinner. Whoever is cooking that night does it, so we both get watched closely.
- Most evenings, specially if we are watching TV, I sit down on the floor and massage the dogs a bit. Lola doesn’t always let me stop.
- Sometime after 9 PM, the dogs go out for their final pit stop.
The dogs can go out whenever they want, and we interact with them in a variety of ways all day, if we are home.