Adventures in Dog-sitting: A Real Life Marley and Me

He never stays still!


Hayden Reeves, Staff Member

This past Friday I had the privilege to babysit “The Reflector” Editor-in-Chief

McKenzie Kerrigan’s wild dog. Bruno, the puppy in question, is one of the most interesting and rambunctious dogs I’ve ever met. It felt as if I was living a recreation of Marley and Me; an adorable dog with an insatiable appetite for all things inedible, such as his toys. Here’s my wacky adventure with him and my tips and tricks if you were ever wondering what having a dog on campus is like.


We Sure Will Talk About This Bruno


My day started out in the afternoon, a time when Bruno is typically at his peak energy. McKenzie gave me his leash, a bag consisting of his toys, a water bowl, and some treats, and went on her merry way. At first he was somewhat comfortable with me since he had interacted with me before, walking around the outside of my dorm with a spirit of exploration. My friends had a math class they needed to attend and I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to walk Bruno around campus.


There’s three constants in Bruno’s life: barking, peeing, and the desire for that which is forbidden, and this walk truly confirmed them. He sniffed around the old Shenanigans parking lot, which I thought was for sure going to ruin his sense of smell. He peed in front of the dining commons, which was a spectacle for all to witness. He even tried to eat a half-devoured wrap sprawled out on the concrete. He for sure would’ve walked all the way to Timbuktu if it wasn’t for me stopping the walk for a little rest.


A Barking Nightmare


After Bruno quite literally dragged me around campus and a quick water break Bruno and I sat outside of my dorm building in the shade. The autumn air felt amazing, and Bruno was for sure living his best life. He was enjoying it so much that he continuously barked at the leaves flying in the breeze around us. I tried to get him to quiet down but he continued on, even yapping at the squirrels that scattered around us.


People would walk by asking to pet Bruno, which I would state “he might jump, but just know it’s out of love” as if it was a legal liability to warn them of Bruno’s tendencies. McKenzie had given me three toys for Bruno to play with and by the end of the day he had nearly destroyed all three of them. Eventually I realized that Bruno needed to go back to the life he was more comfortable with and texted McKenzie to come pick him up.


Tips and Conclusions


I think the best part of babysitting Bruno was the fact that he reminded me a lot of my dog back at my home named Miles. He might not jump as much due to his old age but Miles still has the same attitude and spirit as Bruno. Babysitting him was a great way to get over missing my old dog and a great clarification that I am most definitely not ready to own a dog completely on my own.


The biggest tip I could give someone looking into getting a dog at our age is understanding the responsibility it takes. You are now in charge of taking care of another life and you must understand the seriousness of it. If you were to get a dog please don’t forget to give them plenty of attention, lots of walks, and be lenient with their sometimes wacky personalities. Maybe even try babysitting one of your friend’s or family members. You never know, you could make some great memories out of it.