3 Dog Day = 3 Content Pet Parents

by DFS-Pet-Blog on January 30, 2011

Part of Linnaea's daily routine is to take all the dogs on a 2-mile hike. It's quite the scene!

Part of Linnaea's daily routine is to take all the dogs on a 2-mile hike. It's quite the scene!

Three of us who work here at Drs. Foster & Smith take our dogs, once a week, for a play date with a wonderful doggie day care owner named Linnaea, who owns a place, called “DOGercise” in Rhinelander. Ellen (Kobe’s mom) and Melissa (Mocca’s mom) have been taking their dogs there for a while. I (Rudder’s mom) have only been taking Rudder there for a few weeks, but boy am I impressed and see it as an excellent cabin-fever-breaker for dogs of work-all-day families like ours.

My heart grew a little softer today when I saw tough little Kobe (about 25 lbs) in his little Kodiak Coat run out to greet Rudder, who is about 6X his size. This was the first time they met, but already I could tell they would be fast friends just from their body language.

Last week Mocca and Rudder met, but initially Rudder’s big black in-your-face snout was a little much for 11-year-old Miss Mocca, who gave him several “can ya just ease up, buddy?” snarly faces. Needless to say, Rudder got the hint and went away to run around with a lab named Buster and eventually saw that Mocca needed to be treated with some delicacy.

Today, the feminine, gentile Mocca was up at the top of the hill leading to the doggie run and looked as excited as could be to get in on the doggie action. Being as dogs generally get used to each other quicker than people get, I am sure they are romping around, or enjoying inside time or prancing around on their walks as I sit here writing this. Ahhhhh, it truly is a dog’s life…..

Linnaea has love enough for all the dogs, in addition to toys and healthy treats at her disposal. She takes them on a 2-mile walk every day. She has her own fenced in doggie yard, plus she has arrangements around town with larger enclosed areas to use as a private off-lead dog park.

From my experience the past several weeks, as well as speaking with my colleagues, the dogs are healthy and happy and a little reluctant to leave when we pick them up (yes, even my “mamma’s boy” looks longingly at Linnaea’s van as he rides away with his nose against my toaster’s back window…)

Mocca’s and Kobe’s moms both claim their dogs sleep soundly from the moment they are picked up. Rudder is not only tired that night, but the next day as well.  Most mornings before I get up he is up and down on the bed several times, waits at the bedroom door to dash out and greet Max the kitty, and then rushes to the back door to see what’s happened the night before that he’s missed.  On days after Linnaea, however, he lays on his side as I slam the snooze several times, and finally stumble out of bed to get ready for work. I do know he’s alive, because his one eye follows my every move as I shower and get dressed. He doesn’t bother getting up, however until I excitedly say, “OUTSIDE?” at which time he stretches and groans and gets up to saunter towards the back door. That’s what one day of doggie day care does for him… and once a week that’s a good thing during these long, dark Northwoods winters.


  • Melissa’s post about her experience with a doggie daycare including the benefits, cost, and considerations.
  • Ellen’s post titled Leading Cause of Dog Behavior Problems, which discusses proper exercise being the key in keeping your dog healthy, happy and well-behaved.

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Rosemary January 30, 2011 at 10:37 am

A tired dog is a good dog. Now if I could just actually wear Ilka out. Even after a good 45 minutes of chasing after training dummies, followed by an hour of training class yesterday, she had the energy to dig out of the yard AGAIN this morning. Now I will have to go out in the rain and put down more metal edging and wire this afternoon.

I was hoping that she would wait until we got the fence posts reset before she dug out again, because I will have to do it all over once the chain link is taken down and restretched. I plan to run edging and either hardware cloth or chicken wire (depending on what section) around the entire yard once the fence is done. Then I just hope we don’t have another hurricane push it over again.

I wish I could (a) afford a treadmill, and (b) have a place to put it. I would have her on it every day. As it is, I try to either walk both dogs for a couple of hours at least three days a week, or have
Ilka chasing dummies for a good 20 to 30 minutes a day. I also try to get in some training sessions with her, as she has a CGC test coming up as her graduation for obedience class, and she still imitates a kangaroo with great regularity

Rick January 30, 2011 at 7:49 pm

Dog daycare facilities can be great for socialization and exercise. The key is finding a good one, and it sounds like you did.

Barb S. January 31, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Rosemary – you are certainly right- tired = happy= less mischief! Sounds like you are doing your best to keep Ilka busy- what kind of dog is Ilka? Obedience training is GREAT and let me know how she does on her CGC!

The person who owned my house owned bloodhounds and had the foresight to bury cinder blocks under the fence at vulnerable areas. I never had a digging dog before Rudder, and it is AMAZING how much he can dig up in a very short time! Good luck with Ilka!

Rick- Yes- thank goodness we have Linnaea near here. She is a gem for Rhinelander dogs and their owners!


Rosemary January 31, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Ilka is a 49 pound black and white mutt. According to the DNA test I had done, she is a mix of mostly Bulldog, with italian Greyhound and a dash each of Am Staff and Collie. She looks more like a Bull Terrier/Border Collie/Greyhound mix. I’m thinking about another DNA profile with another company later on to see if they come up with something different.

I took her to the dog park (I’m sure the city could have found a wetter, soggier place for a dog park if they really tried) today instead of a walk. A couple of little dogs showed up, and they all ran the fence for about 15 minutes. Between fetching and fence running, she ran flat out for probably 30 minutes, and then we did a training session for another 20 minutes. She’s actually asleep right now.

I guess I should just be happy we even have an off-leash dog park, but really, the place floods if you so much as whisper the word rain, and heaven help you if you go in the summer and forget the mosquito repellent. I also can’t take both dogs at the same time, because it is divided into under 30 pounds, and over 30 pounds, with only one dog per person (which the lady with the little dogs ignored) allowed. That said, it took dog park supporters over five years to convinvce the city to even put one in.

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