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Re Porter - Adventures in dog-sitting
bethany porter

I like dogs, but I would not call myself a dog person. Dogs seem to always know this too because nearly every dog I have come in contact with will jump all over me. Especially my sister’s Australian Shepherd, Bailey.

My sister and brother-in-law went on a little vacation and had planned to send Bailey with someone who takes care of dogs like they did before. Well, this time the person was going to be taking care of multiple dogs and Bailey doesn’t play well with others. Hours before their trip they asked me if I would dog/house sit.

While describing the duties on the phone they said I would have to feed her, take her outside, and let her sleep with me. I was with them until the last part. Despite my distain for a sleeping partner, I agreed to do it and moved into their house for a week. I failed to mention to my sister that I had never taken care of anything before and the one time I tried to have a plant it died. 

On the first night, Bailey and I watched Spider-Man (2002) in preparation for the new movie coming out. I learned quickly that no one had ever popped popcorn in that house before because when I did she barked at the microwave. 

Bailey is not allowed to have people food because it messes with her stomach and my sister specifically wrote it on the list to not give her people food. I definitely did not give her any because I really, really, really did not want to clean up any bathroom emergencies. While I ate my popcorn, she stared at me the whole time. She even was passive aggressive about it and tricked me into thinking she needed to go outside to get back at me.

Bedtime was not great. They told me she would just sleep at the foot of the bed, and at first she did. When I turned the TV off and was about to go to sleep, she decided to invade my space and later wandered around the room all night. When I told my sister the next day she said they usually give her pets and that is what she wanted. I can’t speak for Bailey, but I did not sleep well that night. 

The next day started off well even though she continued to stare at me eating. The trouble did not come until bedtime. I petted her a little this time and she went to the foot of the bed and fell asleep. At 12 a.m. she started barking at the door and whining. I ignored it at first. She did it more at 1 a.m. and I assumed she needed to go to the bathroom, bundled up and took her out into the cold night. I don’t even think she went to the bathroom. I think she was just being dramatic. 

Unfortunately for Bailey, she pushed my last button and our sleeping arrangement ended when I put her in the crate for the rest of the night. These are just the events from the first two out of five nights.

Standard reporter Bethany Porter can be reached at 473-2191.