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A Dog's Life

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Another successful family vacation to the cottage has come and gone and with that comes a new wave of family memories to cherish and enjoy. It is one of the only times throughout the year where we can get the entire family together for any length of time. Many milestones were realized this year as the kids have grown so much over the past 12 months.

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As my family evolves from year to year, it excites me to see them reach their own goals, the least of which is learning how to swim and become more confident when in and around the lake. With that confidence comes an easing of this momma's rules about water safety. I have been very vigilant about not letting the kids near the lake unless either my husband or I were present. This year, I felt a lot more comfortable, as long as they were practicing the buddy system.

The most fun was had on those days where they took Paisley in for a swim. Cottage life is about reconnecting on a more personal level with the kids, where Wi-Fi devices are an afterthought. No need to concentrate on their cell phones and iPads when they only work intermittently. Even the television quickly becomes an afterthought, when the bonfire is lit right after dinner.

Paisley was definitely a big hit along the waterfront and at the end of the dock. She paced back and forth along the shoreline while the girls were in swimming. Last year at the cottage Paisley was so small and very fearful of everything. We are actively trying to rid her of her anxieties, those things that she finds uncomfortable having not done them before.

We had no idea that she was such a great swimmer. By weeks end, she was entering the water from the shore all by herself to hang out with the kids. Quite hysterical to see her short little legs in the clear lake water going at a million miles an hour. We purchased from the local sports store a "boogie board" for the kids to play and float on between the end of the dock and the raft, about 75 feet away. One of the girls thought it would be funny to see if Paisley would enjoy standing on the boogie board. One time while swimming back to shore from the end of the dock, she swam over to it and climbed up on it. That then became her happy place. She ended up sitting down and enjoying the ride.

The entire family, Paisley included had a fantastic time at the cottage and look forward to returning again soon. We were scheduled to leave on Sunday afternoon to head home. Unfortunately, late Friday evening a terrible storm came through and knocked out the power for miles around. Not really a big deal, except it still hadn't come back on for more than 5 minutes by Saturday afternoon. The general consensus was that we should pack up and head back to the city, as we were worried about the lack of power for the refrigerator.

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The one thing that became quite evident during the storm is that Paisley still has a few anxieties we need to work on, the least of which is loud claps of thunder and a sky that every couple of minutes was completely illuminated by amazing lightning bolts. Between Paisley and our neighbors dog, they scarfed down an entire bag of Beggin' Strips during the storm. The kids were trying to take their minds off the loud noises.

Being a Purina Pet People Ambassador has its perks; we get to learn first hand from the experts what is new and improved in the world of pet food. Just like my family members, Paisley can be very finicky too. The Purina ONE SmartBlend dry dog food with Real Venison is still her favourite. She has now decided however that it is more fun to separate the Venison pieces from the rest of the food and put them on the floor beside her. She eats them first and goes back to devour the rest. There is never a morsel left when she walks away from her bowl.

Until next time, remember to take carry of your puppy and keep a watchful eye while around lakes and waterways.

This post was sponsored by Purina Canada. The views and opinions expressed in this blog, however, are purely my own.