When Clinton and I moved from Little Rock to Baltimore we had more of a larger home situation to start the conversation about getting another dog. After searching the local shelters, kennels, ads, etc we found our beautiful princess Kiraly. She was about two months old sleeping away the day without a care in the world for the people or other dogs around her. It was so cute waking her up to see if she wanted to play with us, which of course she did! We instantly loved her and knew that she was ready to go home. We bundled her up and drove her back to the city and introduced her to her new brother, Kyzer. Kyzer was such a sweet boy welcoming her into the house. In that instant the Talley family unit was officially complete!
Kiraly is almost the exact opposite of Kyzer. She is much more caution, doesn’t quite like making friends with everyone instantaneously, and very much so loves her tennis ball (so don’t take it away from her for long!) But when you get her outside, she is a completely different girl! She adores chasing after her big brother and loves being out in the middle of nowhere exploring. There are many poisonous animals in the desert so we’ve started a regiment where we keep the dogs moving – no sniffing too long in a bush in the desert! Kiraly is not as interested in sniffing as Kyzer is, her favorite thing is running back and forth between all of us and giving kisses whenever possible. We take a lot of precautions with the dogs, though, and take a lot of time trying to be as educated as possible about the landscapes we visit. Here in the desert it is very dry, there are less places for shade, and many conveniences are located hours if not days away. When we pack for a weekend camping trip we pack a gallon water per person/animal and always pack about a days worth of food extra just in case.
Mostly we try and take as many breaks as we can with the dogs so they can have a little snack or at least a cup of water. We try not to give them too much water as we hike through the day, but we also remain conscious of the fact that they can’t really tell us when they are exhausted so we need to really pay attention to them. One of the best times is when the four of us are hiking outside! Kiraly loves to run ahead of everyone, run back and bark at Kyzer (as if to say “I won!”) and then run back up the hill/across a crazy ditch/into a creek/etc. One of the funniest situations was the Wiregrass Wash hike. 12 miles round trip. Kiraly was ahead of the pack until the last few miles. Just like the rabbit and the turtle, Kyzer had kept true and stead the whole time. Kiraly of course made fun of him the entire time for being last…until he suddenly found his second wind after steadily plodding along for 9 miles. It was Kyzer who started going back and forth “making fun” of Kiraly as she was tired. Don’t worry – we helped her out when we could. Little Kiki made it back successfully.
When we first got Kiraly we went camping out in West Virginia and had a great time in the woods. She followed whatever Kyzer did, which was adorable, and snuggled up at night when we went to bed. We always set a perimeter around our campsite so that they know the boundaries once it starts to get dark. Nothing is worse than getting into a great conversation, looking around and not seeing your dog. Well behaved dogs are essential to trips that involve the outdoors. We’ve trained our dogs so that they do not leave the immediate area once it starts to get dark. When we go to bed we have a separate area of the tent. We got a bigger tent which is a lot of room for two humans and two large dogs, but once it starts to get dark and quiet those dogs just want to cuddle up with you so you lose the room anyway! Having two dogs may be a handful, but we love it each and every day! Kiraly is the last piece of our family’s puzzle. It’s already been three wonderful years with both of the dogs and each day is another fun experience!