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Every Night is a Three Dog Night

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A three-dog night is symbolic of cold, blustery nights that use the dogs for warmth. In our house, they are there when the temperature outside is thirty degrees or one hundred degrees. The inside temperature is the same year-round, but they don’t care. It is not an exaggeration to say that sleeping with three dogs in your bed will present some challenges.

If your partner leans over to kiss you goodnight, there should not be a dog between you. More than once, the dog got a kiss, and I did not. I was second, but it still got there. The dog’s tail was wagging because Daddy gave her a big kiss and she gave him one in return. Maybe keeping the light on until the kissing is done would help.

Rumor has it that a dog will not mess in their sleeping area. In the wild, they reportedly leave their den to eliminate. In our bedroom, that has not always been the case. This is especially true if the dog is a new arrival and it didn’t matter if it was a male or a female. The territory was marked. I must admit that it rarely was in the center of the bed. Usually, it was to one side or the other, so maybe they did leave their den.

The three dogs that sleep with us are not large. Our queen size bed could not handle 3 Great Danes or Golden Retrievers. The Retrievers sleep on the floor on either side of the bed. There is one two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels that were rescued. One is very petite for a Cav; she sleeps at the top between the two pillows. Her sister is large for a Cav, and she likes to tuck herself either behind my knees or in my lap. Our pet name for the big one is “Tank.” If she gets too close to the edge of the bed, she has been known to fall off.

Number three is a poodle mixed with something. The shelter said Lhasa, but the groomers think he’s a peekapoo. Whatever he is, he has an attitude. His legs are too short of making it onto the bed without help, so we put a box next to the bed. This was self-preservation. When he couldn’t get onto the bed, he would bark until we picked him up and put him in the bed. His habits are different. He will get into the bed, walk around checking things out and leave the same way he got up there. He will do this several times each night. Wish I could figure out his goals. Maybe he thinks he’s a night watchman and his job is to make sure no one has left the bed.

All five of our dogs are rescues — some from breeders who were retiring stock and some from breed-specific shelters. We don’t want puppies. We are not people puppies and don’t have the time needed to raise a puppy from puppyhood to adulthood. They have all expressed their appreciation in one form or another. Our two Golden Retrievers came to us when they were eight. Their owner was ill and turned them into rescue. These littermates needed to stay together.

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