Lesson #96: On Pet Responsibilities & Not Being That Way-Too-Stressed-Out Working Couple

by Rachel on July 15, 2011

Eric and I love our puppies, but they require tons of attention.

When they are out and about, you can’t turn your back for a second — if you do, you’ll find a huge chunk of carpet missing/your phone charger turned into a toy/a lot of pee spots and they’ll be looking at you, one with his collar off, the other with the dog food bowl upside down on his head, and you feel like you’re interrupting the greatest frat party ever — so being with them requires all of your focus.

They are adorable, but exhausting, especially to handle alone.

We crate them an appropriate amount, but a crate is not a full-time solution, and we no longer can use our fancy baby gate in the entryway since Chuck started, um, eating the walls one day. (Not like nibbling at a corner…just…somehow chewing a hole into the flat part of the wall. I know…I don’t get it either.)

And when one of us is working crazy amounts of overtime, the other one is left alone with the puppies a lot more than she deems fair.

The solution? Mr. Overtime is paying for a pet-sitter.

Her name is Rachel. She comes a few nights a week. She doesn’t charge too much — just mani/pedi/lunch money — but I think Eric only greed to hire her because he thinks she’s hot.

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dori July 15, 2011 at 2:41 pm

I can’t handle the sweetness of their faces. I am in love.


2 Jessica @ Stylish Stealthy and Healthy July 15, 2011 at 2:50 pm

If you change your mind, you know, I’d take them off your hands ;)


3 Paul McConaughy (@minutrition) July 15, 2011 at 2:54 pm

Told you you’d be “that kind of person.”

Of course, Eric is right about Rachel, (he should marry that girl!) but I’m still working on how being your own pet-sitter works.

Just so you have something to look forward to… mine is nine and we only have to watch it HALF the time.



4 Camby July 15, 2011 at 3:14 pm

My American Bulldog puppy kept me on my toes for about four months. I followed her everywhere she went. I did not have chewed up furniture, nor accidents. I was there to catch her in the act. I know it’s exhausting, but worth it.

Get an exercise pen, it will keep them from having access to baseboards and walls. They come with clips to attach to crates or you can set it up around their crates. Look for one with a door. Plus, you can take it outside and let them run around in it. I used a baby gate to section my dog off to an area near her crate and came home to a chewed up window sill. She now has her crate with an exercise pen attached to it. She has plenty of room to move about while she is being crated and she can’t eat the window sill.


5 Rachel July 15, 2011 at 3:26 pm

I agree that it’s worth it…following them everywhere makes a HUGE difference!

Would you mind sharing a link to what you mean by exercise pen? I think I know, but I’m not sure, and I’d like to explore this more!


6 Camby July 15, 2011 at 4:26 pm


The size you need shouldn’t cost too much. I had to buy the 32″ tall one. I wouldn’t suggest buying a plastic one. Check petsmart, walmart, etc. I got mine at Tractor Supply. Jeffers pet and Leerburg have good prices on theirs too.


7 Camby July 15, 2011 at 4:31 pm

Oh, you don’t have to buy the individual panels. Most come with eight panels. 2′ wide x height you need.


8 Rachel July 18, 2011 at 10:22 am

Cool, thanks so much for this! Looking into it now!


9 Kaley [Y Mucho Más] July 15, 2011 at 8:37 pm

I love how you describe interrupting them as like interrupting a frat party. LOL! They do look so cute and innocent, but you can tell they’re chaos-makers.


10 D July 16, 2011 at 8:57 am

This is super random, but I just had to comment on this, since I first learned of Mochi Beats from your blog…have you heard what happened?!


11 Rachel July 16, 2011 at 8:59 am

YES, I have and I’m SO bummed!!


12 Lindsay July 18, 2011 at 7:24 am

We started with one dog that chewed everything (laptops, cell phones, furniture, shoes, etc) and then we got the second dog to entertain her. We also invested in gallons of bitter apple to spray on things so they wouldn’t chew them. I am glad mine are out of the chewing phase, good luck, I know it is exhausting sometimes.


13 Rachel July 18, 2011 at 10:21 am

The bitter apple spray doesn’t seem to be doing much for them, unfortunately!


14 Lindsay July 18, 2011 at 11:29 am

One other thing that our trainer told us if that doesn’t work is to add some peppers to the bitter apple or make your own. He suggested vinegar and some jalapeno juice, but that may stain. I ended up adding just a little jalepeno juice to ours and it seemed to work better. We also put chili powder on our fence and it kept our neighbors dog away from it (he is a mastif and keeps breaking our boards). Also google Kong bones, these are all of my chewing tips, they will outgrow it I promise.


15 [SMASH] at Sweat. Style. Swoon. July 18, 2011 at 11:23 am

Would love a pup but it looks like so much work. Worth it? Maybe…


16 Mehnaz July 22, 2011 at 2:11 pm

I have an 8 month old English Bulldog, Nigel, who is a handful too. He has points in the day where he is Nascar puppy and we always try to arrange a puppy play date to tire him out (it was harder when he was smaller because I worried about him getting hurt but now it’s a lot easier). Classes and agility have been a great way to exhaust him – it’s less about the commands and teaching little tricks then to have a moment once a week that seems to exhaust him for two days:)


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