I have heard some folks say there are 7 levels and some folks claim 9.
But the hell I'm talking about today involves dogs, so that would be 49 or 54 levels of hell.
Which is way too many to think about.
I could not imagine it...until today.
When I survived the first level of hell.
Well at least a level of complete madness that happens to dog owners when the dogs in question act like their brains have been removed and replaced with bubbles.
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My daughter is at my house with her 2 very devoted dogs while she recovers from her adult tonsillectomy.
Even with a female family bloodline of very high pain tolerance she says her pain on day 6 is a 6 out of 10.
So I'm guessing that for the rest of the world it would be a 'kill me now, I'm begging you' out of 10 on the pain scale.
She is dealing with tonsil hell, but that's another story....
Any way to give her a break and a quiet house for a little bit, I decide to take her 2 dogs and my 2 dogs for a walk at the family cabin where they can run and play with abandon.....sans leashes.
It is to laugh.
The no leash rule must only apply to dogs that actually use their brain.
Well my dogs immediately jump out of the car and head down the steep hill towards the creek.
My daughters dogs do the same.
Every one is happy and ready to walk the trail.
Dog #1 gets to the creek edge where the bridge used to be and stares at the rest of us who have excitedly crossed the cold, wet water and are staring back at her because...well, the bridge was gone and we weighed the other options.
After a delay of what seems like biblical proportions and numerous attempts to coax her to the other side, dog #1 decides her option is to turn around and prance back up the hill, the way she came.
Are you kidding me?
She was the most excited to go!
Well I can't let her go up the hill and be by herself because she also chases cars.
So I cross the creek again and climb the hill to go get
The 3 other dogs follow me.
I get to the car and because she has no leash, I have to chase her around the car until I can catch and stop her by flattening her on the ground and quickly picking her up.
My eye starts to twitch a little...
She is small but heavy as a bag of rocks.
Yay, here we go again!
Got the dog under my arm and all 5 of us head down the hill to the creek.
Half way down, I realize that dog #2 is not with us.
So I call her.
She is usually much more obedient and most likely busy doing doggy things, so we all keep going and cross the creek again and wait for dog #2.
Call by name.
Why didn't I bring leashes so I could make them come with me and have a fabulous time like I'm having?
My upper lip starts to quiver.
Thinking that dog #1 will not possibly cross the creek, I leave her with my 2 dogs and I start back up the hill to the car to get
Half way UP the hill there are 3 dogs following me.
Get to the top and grab dog #2.
I explain to dog #2 how this activity works.
She wags her tail, she gets it.
Ok...lets try this again.
I cannot carry both dog #1 and dog #2 to ease my fear of repeating this hike, because I have a walking stick in one hand due to the treacherousness of this crazy terrain that I thought would be fun.
Putting dog #2 on the ground and picking up for a second time, the now wet
I am grumbling at them through my teeth, wheezing like a bear and stomping like a dinosaur down the hill.
We all finally cross the creek after 5 trips up and/or down the now seemingly gigantic mountain of a hill and they all start wagging their tails, sniffing everything in sight and sprinting in happy dog circle runs like they thought of this grand adventure all on their own.
No dogs...this was MY idea, but you turned it into a nightmare.
We take a short walk down the trail and I decide to go back to the car.
My soggy feet are cold and my fuse is short and even though I love all of them, they will not have too much fun today.
There you have it.
Stubborn, do whatever they want, leashless, bubble head dogs plus about 800 miles of mountain climbing and creek walking is my first level of hell survival story today.
This all occurred after I took care of a sick, sneezy, busy, stubborn, do whatever he wants 20 month old grand baby for hours and hours.
I'm going to bed.
Thanks for being here.
Left to Right, Dog#2 and Dog #1
Don't make eye contact.
They are searching for souls...
They're looking for snacks...and bubbles.