Happy Memorial Day. Thank you for those who have served.
So, if you didn’t know, Daisy was in front of one of the pillars at the World War II Memorial. I had not been to Washington DC since it was built. If you have the chance, definitely have it on the list of things to see while you are in town. The fountain in the middle provides a very calming effect in an otherwise bustling area and it is a beautiful tribute to those who served our country. I think it’s the best set of photos for Memorial Day tomorrow.
Now onto learning about Blogpaws… One of the first things you might need to consider is-should your dog/pet come with you?
My very clear answer? Maybe. Yeah, that is the best I can do if you want a short answer. Keep reading for the nitty-gritty.
There are some things to ask about your animals. You need to be very honest with yourself. This will ensure you have a great Blogpaws. We all love our pets and making sure they are the right fit for this environment is important.
Does your pet enjoy people, and being in large, noisy, crowds with other people and pets? Randomly petted and cooed over by strangers? Although I personally found many of the pet owners at Blogpaws to be more aware of potential issues than say, dog owners at a community festival, there are still times where you will have to be very close to other dogs, cats, and other assorted animals. At times, it can be very loud. People are meeting for the first time and bloggers are catching up with old friends. Basically, a party.
Is your dog reactive, fearful, or nervous in any way? If the answer is yes to any of these, Blogpaws is not a good fit for them. The environment is just too crazy. It can be near impossible to find a space that is pet free and calm-even outside.
Do you want to possibly give up your favorite and most looked forward to session in favor of a potty break? Yes, this happens. If you are the type to be upset about it-either bring a friend with you that can help take care of your pet or leave them at home.
Can your pet be left alone in a hotel room without destroying it or barking continually? You might have decided your pet is perfect for Blogpaws, then get there and find out they are just exhausted or overwhelmed. Can you leave them in the room to relax on their own, or will you have to miss some of the great sessions to stay with them? Remember the hotel will be a strange place for them which might increase their anxiety (or excitement).
I thought I knew Daisy pretty well, but I learned a lot more about my sweet girl during this trip.
I went into this knowing Daisy is friendly but aloof. Being aloof with strangers is a normal trait for black and tan coonhounds. You are much more likely to get her to be friendly if you have food. Some folks interpreted her behavior as ‘shy’. It was really that she had no interest in you once she knew you didn’t have a treat. No big surprise here for me. I kind of like her aloofness. Personally, it is easier to deal with than a dog who must say hello to everyone.
Daisy has always been my go-everywhere, bomb-proof dog. I learned that even though she was sleeping in sessions the constantly being “on” around everyone was exhausting for her. She needed breaks even when I didn’t. Luckily, she is a dog that has no issue being left alone in a strange hotel room-this was not her first experience in a hotel. In fact by the end of Thursday sessions she was DONE! She didn’t want to walk anywhere, meet anyone, or see anything. She wanted dinner and bed. She was so tired she couldn’t curl up in her normal ball-she just laid flat-out on the bed.
In the later days I made sure to see that she got enough rest. How I did this was by getting up, taking her to breakfast and the early morning sessions. This allowed housekeeping to clean my room. Then for lunch and at least the first afternoon session she was up in the room napping. In the evening I went and brought her down. She’d go outside for some playtime and we’d enjoy the evening activities.
I also learned that a room full of screaming, cheering people with cowbells is terrifying to my poor Daisy. Well, the cowbells are. She was under our table panting. I felt horrible! As soon as the Nose to Nose Awards were over, I took her up to the room, fed her, and let her go to bed. I went back down to enjoy the party and dinner. Next time she goes we will go and have pictures taken on the red carpet-she loved this part. Showing off is in her blood! Then back up to the room she will go while I stay and party.
By the way, have you seen where next year’s Blogpaws Conference is? Vegas baby! It is SURE to be a party!