At Katy We Love Our Campers
We LOVE our Campers! Check out our featured Campers at Camp Bow Wow Katy. These pups love to play all day in our fun, safe and social environment, and receive lots of love and attention from our Certified Camp Counselors® whether they’re in for day care or boarding.
February Camper of the Month
CeCe was born on July16, 2005 in Lincoln, Nebraska. That makes her around 13-1/2 years old today. She came into our family to be a companion to my mother, Helen Harwager. My father, Helen’s husband of 65-years, passed away in February of 2005 at the age of 87. My mother, then 83, had never lived alone. She married my father in 1939 at the age of 18 while still living at home. There were three other Szi Tzu’s in our family; my neice had two and my brother had one. My neice took it upon herself to find CeCe, looking at pet stores and checking with breeders in the Lincoln area. After picking out CeCe she took my mother to the store to check her out. She fell in love with CeCe on first sight and took her home.My mother lived in a nice townhouse. My parents has lived for 17-years on a 5.5 acre acreage outside Lincoln which they owned outright. They sold the acreage (which included a 4,400 square foot home) and used the procedes of the sale to purchase a custom-built townhouse. My father passed away only two-months after moving into the townhouse. While our family had a number of cats and dogs as pets over the years (I received a beagle puppy for my fourth birthday, for example), my mother never had a pet of her very own. CeCe was a challenge for her to learn how to care for and deal with a little puppy. She did so however, and I credit her with raising CeCe to be a loving little animal.CeCe has always been a people dog. She loves people and is very friendly towards young and old. My mother was of course retired and was able to spend almost all her time with CeCe except when she left home to go shopping or run errands or visit friends. As a result, CeCe became accustomed to almost never being alone, and suffered seperation anxiety when she was left alone, a trait she still exhibits to this day although not as badly as in the past. This is the reason I have her spend her days at Camp Bow Wow. When I’m home, she followsme everywhere just like she followed my mother everywhere around the house. I bought four dog beds for her and placed them around my house so she can follow me around and have a place to lay comfortably in most places I go. I visited my mother in Lincoln about four times a year. I always loved CeCe and always paid lotsof attention to her whenever I visited, far more than anyone else in our family. I always played with her, took her on walks and gave her physical affection. As I said earlier, I had a beagle as a child whom I loved and took care of until she died at the age of 12, so I learned from an early 1CeCe As A Puppy About 6-Months Oldage to care for and love a pet dog. It was my mother’s wish that if she died before CeCe that I take CeCe into my care.My mother passed away last November at the age of 98. During the last weeks of her life she was mostly bedridden and not in good shape. Among other problems she suffered from progressive dementia and a lot of pain. For the last 14-months of her life she was under 24/7 care by people we hired and the company that owned the independent living complex she lived in. We finally put her on hospice. CeCe would lay in bed with my mother, and she began to bark and growl menicingly at the hospice nurses so as to protect my mother. Of course CeCe didn’t understand the people where there to help my mother. They demanded we put her in a kennel facility, which we did. From that time until I picked her up at the kennel after my mother’s passing, funeral and such, she was in the kennel about 3-1/2 weeks.I picked her up on my drive back to Houston. It is a two-day, 900-mile drive. She of course knew who I was but she was still unnerved and confused by the drive. Once we arrived in Katy it took her a couple of weeks to get her bearings and to get used to my house and the new routine and to really trust me to take care of her.I bring her to camp for two reasons: One, on days like Sundays, she tends to just lay around and sleep all day and gets bored with me and the lack of activity. During the last year of my mother’s life there were always people and activity in her one-bedroom apartment to keep her interested and alert. I live by myself in a four-bedroom house and I don’t have a lot of peoplealways coming and going. I don’t think it’s healthy for her to lay around all day and sleep. The second reason is that I am looking for a job. I am an Electrical, Instrumentation and Control Systems designer by trade with a 41-year career. I had to leave my last job to help take care of my mother. I spent 11-weeks in Nebraska last year when she had three hospitalizations. As her medical Power of Attorney, I needed to be there to make decisions. I also had to try and offset the cost of 24/7 care at a rate of $18,000 per month by relieving the hired help. Even when I wasn’t there I had to handle phone calls dealing with medical care and financial issues on an 1CeCe and my mother togetheralmost daily basis. My mother just hung in there and kept living well beyond everyone’s expectations.CeCe doesn’t like to go to camp in the morning. She would rather stay in one of her warm doggie beds and sleep. But when I pick her up at the end of a day she has been at camp she seems to be in a good mood and is full of energy. I always take her for a walk of a mile or so after picking her up and after an hour or two she is sleepy and ready to call it a day. CeCe doesn’t have any interest in toys or playing anymore. She’s too old for that. She used to love to have you throw a little football so she could chase it but she has no interest in that now. I walk her three or four times a day depending on if she goes to camp or not. On camp off days I walk her first thing when I wake up, then at 2:00pm, then at 6:00pm, then at 9:00pm. The 2:00pm and 6:00pm walks are longer, usually at least a mile. On Sundays I try and do a 2-mile walk. On camp days we don’t do the 2:00pm walk. Back when she was younger I could walk her 4-miles without a problem, but that’s too far for her now.He favorite activity is to smell her peemail on our walks. She just loves smelling where other dogs have peed. The vet said I should let her do it as it is natural and good for her mentally. He said it’s a way of socializing much like we look at our email or catch up on the news. I admit it gets tiresome sometimes as she must stop to smell about 30 times every mile, but she really seems to enjoy it.Other than walking and smelling peemail her favorite activities are eating and sleeping. She loves the outdoors and likes to look at cars and people. I have dozens of pictures of her during her life. When I look at pictures of her when she was younger and look at her now I realize howold she is. I think she deserves to take it easy. I really don’t know how much she misses my mother. It’s impossible to tell. I’m just trying to make the last years of her life as comfortable, happy and healthy as possible. She always has been a really good dog. She was a great companion for my mother and brought her great joy. CeCe deserves the best care I can give her.