Monday, May 25, 2009

fireflies and frogs and dogs, dogs, dogs

memorial day weekend at glencadia dog camp from glencadia on Vimeo.

Pancho is Fenway and Fenway is Poncho. Whoops.

So here is the Memorial Day 2009 blog entry, which is a list of thoughts and things I meant to say in no particular order:

Fireflies ad Frogs

I noticed fire flies last night for the first time. For the past two years (see 2009 and 2008) I have noted the day the frogs woke up, and I thought I would add the first day of fireflies from now on.

The frogs all come out at once. As soon as one male frog starts singing, they all get up and get to it. It goes from deadly winter quiet to loud and that means sping. That is the real official start of spring for us: the night the frogs all wake up.

The fireflies are not so dramatic and it is quite possible they were out and I didn't notice. And there were only a few last night. They kind of fade in and fade out, not like the frogs. Still, I'm going to propose to the family that the first night we notice fireflies is the official first day of summer for us.


The past few days I made some good videos and I felt the urge to keep up with standard of the past few days, which means I have to get all the shots in, then edit, the upload and then write it up. That all takes time and the weekend is ending today and I still hadn't got the video up, until now. What also didn't help was we were planning this party and had to spend all Friday night in the emergency room because an MRI mis-reported a dissected artery in my wife's brain. Turns out, there is no problem, but we got home at 2 in the morning. And she wasn't allowed to nurse due to the dye for the CT scan. The baby was mad, mad all night, very, very mad, and then there was a party... and the blog had to suffer. Thank god I have Jim around here. Phew!

Haircut and 25 Pounds

I need to loose weight and get a haircut. Or stay out of the videos.


That boy is camera shy. I set up a shot out in a field. I'm all ready to have a picturesque rural scene. I go back and get some dogs, including Seamus, and he runs back to the barn. And then I come in the barn with a 2-year old on my head, and he panics. So, the video includes some shots of him, but for such a big guy, I have managed to miss out getting him in pictures.


Poncho was scared and needed some special attention. I decided to keep him with just a few dogs -- mostly Sumi, turns out -- because he seemed overwhelmed. And he was afraid of me, cowering when I came in. So I decided to take him for walks regularly -- regular walks with a leash, with just a couple dogs, which isn't what I normally do. I want him to think that something good will happen every time he sees me and I don't want to overwhelm him. Today, though, I think I'll just put him in the big group. He seems much better. At the party we had (goodbye to some friends moving to New Mexico) I took him out for a walk again and he loved this one woman I didn't know, all excited to see her, which just reinforced how ambiguous he was about me. Still, he's starting to like me now. I guess he likes girls better, and I can't blame him.

Gracie and Maizy

They hate each other. I think its Gracie, have to try to keep them apart.

Tina and Frankie

Settled in well. Tina has her pushy moments, but they are just fine. I figured a lab like Frankie would like a swim. See video.


Hey, I made a very long video of Tizoc mostly eating grass, then the tractor came by... it was a good little shot. Where is it? I didn't see it when I downloaded the videos. Sorry: I will look again.


Owners say, "Also, regarding OFF LEASH time, she is very responsive when paid close attention to, but when left on her own she tends to get bored and start wandering farther and farther off. If it is not a situation with direct supervision where she can be called back by name every few minutes, I suggest starting her out in an enclosed area. I am also not sure how responsive she is to new people, as opposed to her owners. PLEASE HANDLE OFF LEASH WITH CARE."

I have to disagree with that. She can jump a six foot fence. When she does, she goes absolutely no where, except to the house to find someone or hang out on the lawn with the house dogs. I completely trust her off leash. She shows no signs of wander lust, doesn't bother chickens.


Hicks got a cut. He's fine, but has to stay clean, which is a drag for him, one day so far, just yesterday. No sand in the cut, so he can't be out in the yard all day, poor Hicks. He made up for it by chasing and cornering and nibbling on a chicken. I mean I live, running away, scared as hell chicken. Luckily, he didn't know how to efficiently kill her. Next time I think he would make short work of a chicken. And now he knows where they are!

Everyone Else

Fine, nothing to significant to report.

Here is something extra:

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

nice day

A full frame of yellow flowers.... red pick up... red barn doors... ducks in their new home... duck on a rope... glencadia today.

shot edited and uploaded today from glencadia from glencadia on Vimeo.

Monday, May 11, 2009

In Nyc 1st Stop

sms blogging: day one

I will try to update my progress as I drive around the city here by text message. We'll see how it goes.

breaking: daisy likes me!

Just this morning she went from tolerating to liking. First, she was scared of me, then she was giving me the run-around, then she tolerated me as long as I didn't try to do anything to her, and now, this morning, she actually likes me. She comes when I call her, she sits in my lap, she rolls over so I can scratch her tummy and she plays fetch with me. Victory!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Columbia County

We live in the northern part of Columbia County, near Kinderhook, Chatham and Hudson. We left Park Slope almost 5 years ago and I started the dog business about 3 years ago. If you are thinking of buying a country house or want to move to a rural area not too far from New York, Boston, Albany, etc., I would be happy to tell you what I think I learned, for what it's worth. Write a comment on this entry and ask away, if something occurs to you. Thanks.

FAQ and "Glencadia"

Ask a Question

Check out my Frequently Asked Questions and see if I forgot something. If you have a question, ask it in the comments section so this list will be more complete.

About "Glencadia"

Glencadia is what this town, Stuyvesant Falls now, was called until 1850 or so. Even in 1914, folks thought Glencadia sounded better than Stuyvesant Falls and I couldn't agree more. 

It sounds like "Arcadia" with a "glen" in it -- a seculed valley, although this here is not a valley. Meanwhile, Peter Stuyvesant was a tyrant who doesn't deserve to have places named after him. Plus, there are no other towns called Glencadia.

I actually don't care if the town keeps Stuyvesant Falls as the name of the town. I like calling the place something that doesn't exist. I like it just the way it is, with a terrible real name and a wonderful magic name, a name which, if you check with Google, I pretty much own.

Grooming and Bordatella Vaccine


Now, for an extra $25 per stay, we can groom and wash your dog before bringing them back home. Nails clipped, hair trimmed by professional groomer (not me!). You should see a check off box on the reservation form, I hope.


You should have your dog vaccinated 2 weeks or more prior stay at camp and not less than 6 months before coming up here. The vaccine is like the flu vaccine: it is not 100% effective no matter how you time the vaccination. The disease is highly contagious but usually not serious and can be treated with antibiotics (it is a bacteria, not a virus, so it's easily treated). The incubation period of the disease is a few days. 

I wish there were a better system for tracking strains and updating the vaccine, like we do with the flu in humans, but as far as I know there is no dog equivalent of the CDC. 

Still, the vaccine is the best protection we have. Get the vaccine from the vet, order it yourself online, or I can come by and bring the vaccine with me.

You can order a dose yourself -- the nasal vaccine is easy to administer (spray it in the nose). It has to be shipped with ice. Do a google search (I don't want to recommend a vendor). 

I also have 100 doses in the fridge and can come by and help you vaccinate your dog, bringing the vaccine with me, for no charge on a Monday or Thursday evening when I'm not busy (like much of the month of May). I can order more doses if need be.

I don't have a good system for reminding myself to come by and give your dog the vaccine, unlike the reservation system. I will take a cooler with vaccine with me every Monday and Thursday from now until the middle of June, when things get busy. 

First email me to tell me you want me to come by. Then call me when I'm getting into the city around 4 or 5 pm to remind me to come by and do the vaccine. Pick a Monday or Thursday when you are home all evening, sometime in the next few weeks. 

Recession Price Cut and Refer a Friend Program

Recession Price Cut for Early Reservations

Main point here: book early and you get a discount. Scroll down for more savings by referring friends.

From what I have been able to acertain, Glencadia Dog Camp is just about the cheapest option New York City residents have for commerical dog boarding. We do more, just charge less.  

Of course, asking your friend to watch your dog is cheaper, but just wait until they charge you for your dog peeing on their sofa. 

"But my dog never pees in the house. You must not have taken him for a walk. What did you do to my poor dog?" you'll say.

"I watched your stupid dog for 2 weeks and he peed on my sofa and all you can do is insult me. What kind of friend are you? Goodbye!"

See, at 30 bucks a day, Glencadia Dog Camp is a bargain. You get to keep your friends. Friends are extremely valuable. 

I wouldn't want to pay too much for my dog when I'm already paying to go somewhere (flight, hotel, etc.). I have paid more than I charge, back when I lived in the city, and I know for sure I didn't like it. Still, despite the agony paying that outrageous fee caused me back in 1999 when I lived on 11th street in Brooklyn, I gave the owner of that boarding facility a tip (hint, hint, wink, wink).

Just kidding about the tip (no tipping, really). Can't resist a joke. Jokes aren't carrots: they don't grow on trees. Wait, neither do carrots. They sprout out of the ground, like worms.

Times are rough and we all have to pinch every penny in order to bailout Bank of America, so I want to chip in and help out. So, if you make a reservation before June 15, you get a break on the price (that's where this is going!). 

As we head into a situation of both inflation based on excessive government spending and/or deflation based on continual cost cutting in the face of sagging demand, how about I do my miniscule part to contribute to the deflationary tendencies in order to help drag the economy into a permanent tailspin? Wait, that sounds like it's a bad thing. Or maybe, because inflation is inevitable I will go out and borrow some money I don't need and pay it back when the dollar is worthless. 

Or how about I just tell you what the early reservation discount is? Nevermind the macroeconomics, here is my temporary price cut:

Short stay rate: $30 per day, pick up and drop off in the city on Monday and Thursday included
use discount code earlybirdshort
Medium stay rate: 8 or more days, $25 per day
use discount code earlybirdmedium
Long term stays: 14 or days, $20 per day
use discount code earlybirdlong

These rates are for all reservations made before June 15. After that, all prices will revert, so plan your summer travel now, if you can. 

If you already booked for the summer, we can make the discount retroactive... I will do those manually. 

And don't forget to put the worm sprouting festival on your calendar for next spring. Or the carrot tree festival in the fall.

Refer a Friend Program

If you refer someone to Glencadia,  you will get an $50 credit toward your next boarding. The credit is supposed to be automatic, but the add-on to my reservation software isn't yet.  

So, for now, just tell your friend to put a note in the comments field when they make a reservation so I'll be sure to apply it to your next bill.

So tell your friends about Glencadia, save 50 bucks. 

And if any of this is unclear, email me or post a question at the FAQ page in the comments section. 

story line in the video

Here is what's going on: Ronnie Blue is in the house, for reasons that become apparent as you watch the movie (too small!). He's quite popular in here. We hired a new babysitter. You can here her come up the driveway for the first time. She's here now and she likes Ronnie too. 

Daisy is much more comfortable but still likes to be upstairs in the dog house. She kind of wants to come to me. And she darted off again when I was feeding her and she went right back upstairs, so I think Daisy and I have figured her dog camp protocols out.

Rocky was naughty again, damn it, and didn't even want one of his own cookies. I tricked him to come back: open the van door and say, "let's go for a ride." He couldn't resist that.

Pixel chases geese, bless his heart. I hate those geese. 

Gustov can open the latch in the barn and let everyone else out of the door, but they have to GET OUT OF THE WAY and let him work. 

"Sally go round the sun, Sally go round the moon, Sally go round the the chimney pot on a Sunday afternoon."

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Frequently Asked Questions FAQ

Q: How many dogs do you take?
A: The most we're had is about 50. Average is maybe 15.

Q: Where do they sleep?
A: We have 11 large rooms and, depending on how many we have, they sleep on the wood floor on a blanket, either grouped by us or by themselves.

Q: Can I come visit?
A: Sure. Email me for directions and map. It's far from the city, FYI.

Q: What do you do when it's cold?
A: We have heat lamps and a woodstove in the dog house. 

Q: Shots?
A: Rabies, distemper and bordatella.

Q: Dog stuff?
A: Don't give me anything you want back.

Q: Pick up or drop off in the city on days other than Monday or Thursday?
A: We can, but it will cost something. Email me for a price and availability.

Q: Not nuetered or fixed?
A: We can talk about it. Email me.

Q: Discount for more than one dog in the house?
A: Yes!

Q: Describe your facilities.
A: We have a large yard with a six foot fence. We have a number of smaller yards, also with 6 foot fences. Every room has a yard, so dogs can go inside and outside as they see fit all day long.

Anything else? Ask away in the comments below!

Someone just emailed me this:
Where are the dogs kept at night/ when not off leash?

The dogs sleep in room, and have a fenced yard and can go in and out
whenever they want.

Or here:

Here is the yard:

here is the barn:

How many dogs do you keep at a time?

At that time, probably about 25. Christmas is tops, like 50. Right
now, 12.

How supervised are they and what protections are there against bad
interaction or aggression from other dogs?

The system is that the dogs are all here for at least a few days and
85% have been here before, so I know them. Then we put them together
so they don't fight. Someone is in and around the place all the time,
although not necessary right out there in the barn. We head off fights
before they happen and haven' had so much as a scratch in a year,
knock wood.

And how much do you charge for pick up from Brooklyn?

No charge for pick up and delivery on Mondays and Thursdays from 6 to
9 pm.

We live in Westchester County do you pick up?  
We can pick up in Westchester on our way into or out of the city, unless you are really far east and we're busy, which is likely in August. So, if you live close to the Taconic, we can come to your house. If you live far away from the Hudson, you might have to meet us -- we can find a spot near the Taconic and call you when we're leaving the city and try to coordinate a stop.

I'm referring to the free pick up and drop off we offer on Monday and Thursday evenings. If you want pick up or drop off on any other night, that another (and expensive!) story.
Are there any addition charges on top of the prices on your website?


Our only concern is about him being off-leashed in a non-fenced area. We live next to Prospect Park and have taken him off leash on a few occasions. He is very quick and has run off; we don't think he is trying to escape but rather is excited by the freedom. Our best guess is that he came from a family who had a backyard and was rarely taken to open spaces off leash. So I guess I am wondering if you could give me more information abut your camp. I believe I read on your site that there is a 6 foot fence, but I also saw that the dogs are allowed to roam in unfenced areas. Is this true for all the dogs? It's not that I don't think he could handle it...I'm just not sure how he would react.

I don't just let any dog off the leash. I let the guys I know well off the leash, including some of the new dogs after awhile when I've had a chance to test them in the fenced area: do they come to me, are they interested in treats, do they seems scared or flightly, are they sniffing around for scents, did the dog check the fence out for holes, do they like the other dogs... If they seem okay, I'll let them off once and give it a try. But no, I don't assume the dog will come back without knowing the dog.

Obviously, I would not want to put you or your staff in a difficult position, and I of course want Iggy to be safe when we are away. Any thoughts or reassurance you could provide would be greatly appreciated.

Difficult situation like wading into a swamp calling out "Come!"? I think I've been in such a difficult situation. Or 100 other ones. I try to avoid them too.

We will be out of town June 27th through July 4th, but I am assuming that we would need to extend Iggy's stay to the Thursday prior and Monday after to coordinate with your pick-up/drop-off schedule (making his stay Thursday June 25 - Monday July 6, correct?). Do you have spots available during this time?

July 4th might fill up but it's not yet. And yes, unfortunately, you do have to make some adjustments for my Monday and Thursday routine. Let me know if you can figure it all out or not.

Finally, my boyfriend and I were actually considering taking a day trip up to the Hudson Valley in the next few weeks. Would it be possible for us to stop by your facility? If so, are certain days better for you then others?

Sure. I can email you a mapquest link (my house is not in google maps) and a map now if you want. I think it's best to play it by ear. Come when you can and if I'm not here, I can ask either Jim or Shanna to show you around when you get here.

On my blog there are some links to sites about columbia county and you definitely should make at least a day of it so we're not your only stop. I think the strawberries should be ready at the organic pick your own in Ancram, since my strawberries are ready. Let's see, Hudson, hiking, boats, swimming... let me know if you need any more advice.

Summer Newsletter

This blog entry, or newsletter, talks about some discounts (refer a friend, book before June 15), includes a reminder about the bordatella vaccine, a dicussion of the term "glencadia," something about my FAQ page, and new information about dog grooming.  I just posted this: the date is when I first set the page up. 

But if you decide not to read the summer newsletter, quick before you click away, let me recommend the puppet show. (Or dogs by colors or our baby ducks. Or a dog who can open a latch with his paw. Remember wind and snow and more snow and sand or this silly thing and this video couldn't have more cute things.)

And if you can't get enough of the newsletter, I have something about Columbia County and the local area, apropos of nothing.

If your dog is here now and you want to see the most recent video (added today) click here.

re: glencadia

Hey, there were 1814 people living in this village in 1823, way, way more than there are now.