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MY DOG & I: PLAYDATE. BY JANINE LAZARUS

My Dog & I by Janine Lazarus

This summer we started a new program here at the farm… Because a great many of our new dog owners are also working people…go figure, it became apparent that there was a need for some alternative activities during the week for young and active dogs.

I decided that for one day a week, I would share our lovely spacious, fenced property with some of our students, especially the puppies!! During the first few months of their lives, young dogs have a difficult time spending long hours alone and the important part of their development – socializing and playing with other dogs, suffers.

We also have several students whose exuberance and athletic nature calls for some serious outlet for their energy and Sooo….we filled two horse troughs with water, dedicated a sandy area for digging, separated an enclosure for little ones and started a pick up and drop off arrangement to collect dogs from Lewisburg and bring them out here for the day from 9 -5.

Let me tell you this is not a job for sissies. Firstly, my Toyota quickly proved to be insufficient for the task and I had to enlist the help of my partner to ferry 16 or so dogs from the Lowes parking lot to Muddy Creek Mountain Road. Secondly, you have NO idea how excited these guys are to be going on this adventure!! Wild anticipation! Oh, the singing and talking on the way here! Crates cannot contain such enthusiasm! Thirdly, although there is plenty of space for everyone on the property, they MUST be where we are…(ever tried to sit at a garden table with fourteen dogs under it?) Fourthly, there is always someone attempting to “liven things up” by taunting a hunting dog with a squeaky toy or digging up a previously forgotten treat and flinging it in the face of a dozing Bassett Hound! Or leaping onto the back of an unsuspecting bather. In short, NEVER a dull moment. And it is not until the heat of the day starts to wear everyone down, that the crew starts to relax a little…yup, for about an hour it is reasonably quiet while poop pick up gets underway and then the party begins again!

Anyway, as the weary bunch is loaded up at the end of the day, at least the journey back into town is pretty quiet. Aaaahhh air conditioning!!  And I know that there are some people who have a complete evening of dead silence once a week!! Dinner and a ten hour nap, please Mom.

So, fantastic fun and a great benefit to all but without a staff of six and a school bus, I think we will be happy to keep the party to once a week, thank you! I have been seriously doing some snow dates though…lets see how brave we really are…

Please note…for the safety and sanity of all, we only take dogs who are under four months or who we have trained.

– Janine Lazarus, HashtagWV. September 2016

Publisher/Editor in Chief at HashtagWV | + posts

HASHTAGWV ART & ENTERTAINMENT Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, Christina Entenmann-Edwards has been a WV resident since September 2008. She was born and raised in Fairfield County, Connecticut, and is no stranger to hard work and the entrepreneurial spirit. In 2006, she graduated from Quinnipiac University (Hamden, Connecticut), Cum Laude, with a B.A. in History. In 2010, she graduated with an M.B.A. from Liberty University (Lynchburg, Virginia). In February 2012, Christina launched HashtagWV as the area’s first full-color, free arts and entertainment tabloid + online platform. Christina completed the Leadership West Virginia class of 2021, which is an innovative program that grows, engages, and mobilizes leaders to ignite a life passion to move West Virginia forward.

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