Creature of Habit


They say that dogs are creatures of habit.  They want – need – that solid schedule that they chart on their internal clock.  This is the time to eat.  This is the time we got for walks.  Now.  Seriously, don’t mess with my routine.

There are some that suggest that people start to take after their dogs.

Appearance-wise, I would like to think I’m missing that particular sharing of attributes.  Habits are hard to break, though, which is why this weekend, the question I asked with most regularity was, “Anyone want to go for a walk?”

This weekend we headed out to Ottawa.  Without the dog.

The first time (apart from when he got fixed) that Gwynn was entirely separated from all persons in our family.  He stayed at the house, along with my good friend who has spent enough time at our house that you’d think Gwynn would stop barking at the door when she comes by.

walks without the dog mean... more pictures of random pretty houses... that happen to be in the exact opposite direction from where you were planning on walking. Clearly Gwynn has the sense of direction

It was… weird.  I woke up at the crack of dawn, jackknifed upright with a twinge in my back from the discomfort of having slept on a pull-out-couch mattress, hazily gathering my thoughts before gathering the clothes to meet public decency requirements, and remember.  Right.  Go back to sleep.  Or at least lie down on that godforsaken monstrosity until a more appropriate hour.

Would it be inappropriate to text home a gentle reminder about poop bags?

I held off texting until noon that first full day, barely.  Is everything ok?  Is the dog alive?  Are you alive?  Was he ok being left when you went to that Passover dinner?  Does he miss me?

Apparently paranoia is contagious, because my pet-sitter extraordinaire spent the second half of her dinner festivities anxiously checking the clock, and fretting.  Had Gwynn gone pee in his last trip outside?  What if he had to do his business?  What if he was dead?  What IF?!

a sign I saw in the ByWard market

We went for an early lunch at the Elgin Street Diner.  It was featured on You Gotta Eat Here, a Canadian food tv equivalent to Diners Drive-ins and Dives, so we were very excited to try their poutine.  It was glorious – so were the home-made baked beans (I split the Blue Plate Breakfast with my mum… and we had food leftover).  One thing I strongly recommend you do differently than us if you do go – don’t order a whole poutine for yourself.  My dad barely made it through half of his, and we didn’t eat again until after 8pm, and then it was just appetizers.  So – share your poutine, or accept the fact that when you’re done, it will likely look like you hadn’t started yet.

the ceiling. Seriously, when you're at this museum, remember to take the time to look up, throughout the exhibits.

After that, we went to the Museum of Civilization in Hull.  I can’t even express how much I highly recommend this museum.  We felt a bit like interlopers in the Childrens’ museum (a whole entertaining section of the museum), a surreal and hands-on series of rooms full of excitedly shrieking kids and their parents.  The rest of the exhibits are amazing, informative without being dull, and presented fantastically.  People with Children – your kids would enjoy the entirety of the museum, from the History of Canada exhibit (complete with giant boat, faux-outhouse, and a ‘guess that fur’ exhibit), to the Native American exhibits, complete with full warrior armour, shaman outfit, and replica of a dig site.  People without Children – you will enjoy this museum!

mop? dog? doesn't matter - it's happy to see you!

We arrived on Friday afternoon.  I dragged Doodle on a long pre-dinner walk.  Saturday, I got my fill of walking through a museum, and Sunday, we walked the By Ward market.  I got my fill of puppy there when I met the most delightfully adorable Puli dog and his owner who was kind enough to not be too alarmed when I just about ran her down on the street.  Pulis on google-images are hilarious and adorable.  On the street, they’re adorable, though given time, I’m sure he’d have been more hilarious than simply “I’m a mop”.  I dragged Doodle out for an early morning walk on Monday before we left, and hardly got home after the long drive before my most enthusiastic walking partner and I were headed out.

It was nice to have a bit more freedom to do indoor type things in Ottawa this time around.  Gwynn survived his four days without family, and so did my pet-sitter.  Overall, though, I think I prefer a vacation with the dog.

How do you deal with the change of schedule in vacations without dogs?  Do you embrace it?  Or is it time for a walk?

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11 Comments

  1. Lance

     /  April 10, 2012

    Pretty much the same as you. My sister-in-law is a great pet-siirt and usually keeps our dog on his schedule.

    I want some $12 dollar french fries

  2. lol, always remember to look up when in that museum 😛
    It was a great weekend, can’t wait to see you guy next 😀

  3. Seriously enjoyable post, and also the comment about looking up in the museum, reminds me I’m never too old to learn a new, “trick’. I will from now on..ty.

    • thanks 🙂
      Definitely look up – whether it’s the ceiling I show in the picture, or a crazy dusk-sky with a ship looming over you… they do a great job of making it an all-around visual experience!

  4. Vacation without the dogs. Is there such a thing? 😆

    Sounds like a great weekend and I bet Gwynn had was spolied rotten and had a great time too. 🙂

    • hard to believe 🙂 even without the dog, I couldn’t forget that he was there, possibly getting into trouble! He did have a lot of fun with his sitter, though.

  5. It sounds like you had fun.

    Having just come back from dog-less-vacation myself i feel like an authority on this subject. I did manage to stretch out a bit while sleeping and while I didn’t feel the urge to walk, I did wake up earlier than I should have (at least for vacation.) Like you though, as soon as I got home and greeted my babies, off we headed……for a walk. 🙂

    • Glad your vacation was at least a bit relaxing – even if you only slept a bit past when the pups would wake you up 🙂

  6. Oh….and I do prefer vacation with my dogs. 🙂

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