Our summer adventure, Pt. 4 (last one!)

Laura And what about our final family member, Miss Photon? She went to camp, too! During vacations past she stayed at home with a dog-sitter, but despite excellent care and many walks (thank you David!) she was pretty bummed out with “her people” not being around. According to what I’ve read, some dogs do far better if they’re taken completely out of the family home when their owners are away, and we suspected that Photon might be one of those dogs.

On asking around the dog park, the name of a cage-free boarding kennel, Überdog Ranch came up. Like most kennels of this sort they insist on you and your dog visit to check out the place. This also serves to have the kennel staff check your dog out. Since dogs are free to interact with each other all day they have to be very well-socialized and friendly.

It was a lengthy trip for a look-see: Near Cobourg, a couple hours’ drive from Toronto. However, for the actual stay they have a thrice-weekly shuttlebus to and from Toronto. Photon actually left two days before our drive east, which was a good thing, as all our packing and running around would have freaked her out.

The ranch grounds consist of a couple of barn-like buildings opening onto large, grassy fields. Peering into the “little dog” barn (since that would be where Photon would be staying) I could see that it was very rustic—plain, rather grubby plywood floors, a couch, pillows strewn around, and some crates for dogs who prefer sleeping enclosed. On one side of the room were some miniature horse stalls (with carpeting instead of hay), where the dogs would individually eat their dinner (and sleep, if they liked to be alone).

When Photon left in the shuttle (looking for all the world like we played her a scurrilous trick) the lack of dog in the house came as a bit of a shock! The stress of getting ready to go lessened the Photon-shaped void somewhat, but we were delighted when Überdog emailed us a link to photos of their campers that they post online every couple of days.

The first day or so Photon looked as though she wasn’t sure of herself:

Photon at camp, Day 1
Note that her ears are down.

But after she got her sea legs she perked right up and looked as though she was having a grand ol’ time!

Photon at camp, more cheerful
Happy Photon at camp
Photos from Überdog

We had sent along a huge ziplock bag of kibble (way more than her usual needs), and she nearly finished it all. The staff said they had increased her serving size because she was running around so much—and since she was much trimmer than when she left we were inclined to believe them!

Even though we hadn’t requested a bath (at nearly $50 extra we figured we could bathe her ourselves) she came back fluffy and clean. The staffer admitted that she had gotten so filthy they couldn’t bear to send her home like that (she seemed to have become a camp favourite). Photon was delighted to see us, but when the staffer turned back to the van, she tried to follow. That and the fact that she came back with laryngitis points to her having had a wonderful barkity-bark-bark time!

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  1. Pamela Cook says:

    Way a go, Whatever your name is LoL (Photon) I am very glad you had fun at camp too.

  2. hyedie says:

    oh my!! what an awesome post with very useful info!

    and i love the photos of before and after 🙂

    you can tell she’s pretty nervous in the top photo, esp. with the whites of her eyes showing. only having dogs with floppy ears, i don’t think i would have clued into that part of her body language.

    yay photon!

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