Wednesday, August 10, 2011

First Day

I hope everyone is prepared for what animal jobs mean as far as this blog goes. It'll pretty much be animal stories from here on out. And just about every day you'll get to hear about how tired I am. I just occurred to me today that starting August 15 I will have three months of continuous work, without a day off. 8am to 5pm, seven days a week. I'm curious to see when my brain shuts down.

My first day of work went well. I always hate being the new kid, because I don't know anything and have to constantly ask "What do I need to be doing right now?" "Where is that? Where do I put this?" But by the end of the day it was already getting a little better.

Two times a day the dogs get taken outside for puppy play group, which lasts two hours each time. People have to be with the dogs to watch and make sure no fights break out, and they switch halfway through play time because it's really hot outside. I first went out with the little dogs, which was okay, but they aren't my favorites. The old dogs go out with the small dogs, too, since they can't rough house with the big dogs the same way.

The big dogs are so fun! One dog came today, his name is Gus, and he is a Great Dane. He is a huuuuge dog. His should comes a little above my hip and his head almost comes to my shoulder. He's so sweet! He'll try to lean into you when you pet him but he weighs more than I do, so I had to brace myself for it and once I just decided to lean against the fence. There's also a German Shepherd being boarded right now and everyone tells me he's a brat, and I can see it, but he's also pretty sweet.

They have this other dog, her name is Eve, and she is strange and has a sad story. I don't know exactly how/where she started, but she had a family--sort of--but they also had an aggressive dog that decided it really didn't like her. The family brought little eight week old Eve into the vet and she had a leg broken in two places and the other leg was chewed up really bad. The vet took the dog from them, because it obviously couldn't go back, and kept her. The leg had been broken in the growth plate so one of the bones in her leg kept growing and the other couldn't. Her leg started to bow out--it still does, and there's a big lump--and they did a bone graft and kept her in a cast for two months until the leg could support her properly. She got adopted out and that family kept her for quote awhile and then they had a baby that was severely allergic--brain swelling kind of allergic--to dogs, so they had to get rid of her and the vet took her back. Now, I guess, she's starting acting up, probably because she lost her family and now has to be in a kennel for the greater part of every day.

She can be a little snappy, and she's a big, big dog so it's a little intimidating, but watching her I think most of her attitude is directed toward other dogs that are causing conflict. If two dogs start fighting or playing too rough she goes over and bites one on the back of the neck, or steps between them and chases one off. When she was with the little dogs, the whole pack of them start yapping away at a dog on the other side of the fence and she started mouthing them until they cleared away and quieted down. She plays really well with Gus, the Great Dane.

Dogs are so fun to watch. And some of them come up to me more than others. One is a white German Shepherd mix named Idaho, but I think they just call her Ida. She's very sweet and very pretty and she kept coming over to where I was and getting my attention so I would pet her.

There is one super sad dog. Oh my. She's a whippet, I think. Greyhounds are the small ones, whippets are the big ones, I think. Anyway, she's really really old and arthritic and can barely walk; when someone takes her for a walk they have to use a sling to hold up her hind legs since she can't do it well on her own. Her skin is so thin that she bleeds really easily, and if she gets any pee or poo on her--which happens since she's old enough that she can't really wait anymore--it burns her skin. It has me wondering why the owner is keeping her alive. I know that might sound callous of me, but what kind of quality of life is there for a dog that can't stand up on her own, and then bleeds if she has an accident because pee burns her skin? But I'm sure the owner knows that and is in a really tough place right now.

Anywaaayyyy! Happier things!

I got in tomorrow and Friday for training, I have Saturday and Sunday off, go back Monday and from then on it'll be work, work and some more work. Mondays will be my short days--I'll get off at 4! Which means Mondays will also probably be laundry days.

Almost dinner time! I've been holding out since I got home because I'm pretty sure once I eat I'll just want to go to sleep. Going to try not to do that until at least 7.

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