Diary of a Real Dog Parent: Life With 6 Samoyeds
Die-hard dog lovers like us believe you can never have too many dogs. But who has the most dogs out of all our Sundays subscribers?
Who has the most dogs on their Sundays subscription?
Many devoted pet parents feed their dog Sundays, but our team wanted to know who has the most dogs out of all our customers. Barbara and her six Samoyeds stood out to us right away.
Barbara is living proof that you can never have too many dogs. She is an intensive care nurse who lives in Monument, Colorado with her six pups. All six of Barbara’s dogs are Samoyeds – and they are one big family, too! Two of the Samoyeds had a litter of four puppies together.
Samoyeds, often referred to as Sammies, are medium breed dogs with beautiful, puffy white coats. Samoyeds were bred by the Samoyedic people in Siberia, to be working dogs in cold environments. The breed is famous for being the “smiling sled dogs”, due to the fact that the corners of their mouth are upturned to prevent icicles from forming on their face.
We connected with Barbara to chat about her daily life with her Samoyed pups and how Sundays helps her to be the best dog parent she can be.
Tell us about yourself. Where did your love of dogs come from?
As a child, I grew up with Pomeranians. My parents had friends that owned Samoyeds and I fell in love with the breed instantly. I knew that someday I would own a Samoyed.
My career background is an intensive care nurse. The caring aspect of helping acutely ill people has made it easy to be innately connected to our dogs. Basically, they just need constant love, attention and direction.
My next great love [after her dogs] is manicuring our little over 3 acres of property. Currently, our six Samoyeds have a secure park to play, run and reside. They also guard the wild bunnies, birds, and squirrels, along with the occasional sightings of foxes and mule-deer.
You can never have too many dogs… but how did you end up with six?
So, two years ago, our young pair of Samoyeds bred and soon our female, Scarlet, had four viable puppies. Our large male, Yukon, was uniquely involved at 3 weeks in the whelping box, caring for the puppies just as much as Scarlet. It was the funniest thing I ever experienced. Scarlet was just a little hesitant for him to be doing some of her job as a new mother. However, they have always had an unusually strong bond, so it worked out well.
Yukon participated in raising the puppies as much as he could – washing, herding, playing and just being extremely attentive. He would even sit in the whelping box as Scarlet fed the puppies. To this day, he still washes their faces, ears and teeth.
So, at eight weeks, I had two individuals who wanted one of the puppies. However, it was like giving away my children… I just could not do it or send them on some airplane out of state. So I decided that we would keep the team together. Lots of human work, which is a daily project.
Tell us about each of your Samoyeds.
Yukon, at 3.5 years, acts like a St. Bernard, always carrying some toy in his mouth. He can even manage a bark with a toy between his teeth! He loves squeaky toys. He is fun-loving and guards his environment at all times. He likes to try and catch his own tail, as well. He still washes his babies’ faces and when they play, he is at the bottom of the pile just having fun. Yukon would rather play than eat.
Scarlet, however, would rather eat than play. I have to carefully watch that she eats only her own portion of a meal. After a feeding, when all the bowls are empty, Scarlet will wash each one crystal-clean and clear. Even though the pups are now two years old, they still have the mentality that everyone eats out of one bowl, despite the six bowls that are portioned out with food.
The three female pups are Brooklyn, Savana and Juliet. They will team together with one toy and with three mouths on it, will run and tug and play. I always think of the Iditarod racing event when they play their game.
Savanna, like her dad, is always watching out for wildlife that may appear in her space. She is a go-getter and very independent. Brooklyn is a true companion pup. She loves to be inside the house with her sister Juliet.
Dalton, the male pup, is gorgeous. He can be a squealer at times. He loves his beef-femur bones. He and his sister, Juliet, can be quite content all by themselves. Dalton is the largest of our six Samoyeds at 65 lbs.
What do you love most about caring for your six Samoyeds? What makes it difficult?
One biggest love about having so many dogs is that they make me happy and that they have each other. One big family. They will all use their paws to touch me, telling me that it’s their turn for a hug.
What makes it difficult is all the work involved to keep everyone nurtured. They are all compatible with each other, love to play tug-of-war, and chase the flying tennis balls. They have developed individual personalities and yet get along famously. What makes it hard is to give individual attention when they all want shared attention. All of them are watchful of each other, my tone of voice, eye contact, gestures and how I go about loving them.
Almost every day, one or two of them are brushed. This summer, I could have probably made 15 baby blankets with their shedding white fur (if I knew how).
What made you decide to feed your pups Sundays?
As a pet owner for many years, I have carefully studied the ingredients of dog foods and have tried to purchase brands of dog food that were deemed “a higher grade of dog food.” However, there were always big words, chemical ingredients that I had no idea what was in the kibble. So, I started to bake a chicken once a week and added it with vegetables to their kibble.
Still not satisfied that I was providing the best nutrition, we would ask the experts at the pet food stores “What is the BEST food for a dog?”. Everyone had a different opinion – raw food, dry food, canned food, etc... even co-op family-owned businesses that put together their “special” recipe of excellent dog food.
I believe a dog’s health can be better if what goes in their mouth is very nourishing. Our vet says that most diseases and allergies are caused by the environment. I believe that food is another cause of health issues in some breeds, as well.
I had been searching for a long time for very high-quality dog food. One day on the internet, there was a side advertisement for Sundays. After reading it, I could not believe my eyes – so few ingredients. Just good nutrition.