I just looked out the window and saw The Bug and Jacksonian the Presidential Dog roaming down the street like they were heading to the park or the store or whatever. They looked like they were finally freed from jail and out to find a good time with the friendly neighborhood she-dogs.
I wasn't so much worried about Stinkbug, he usually comes when you call him, surprisingly he is a scaredy dog and won't venture too far, despite his "reputation" as a bastard. The dogs stay downstairs (Jack can't make it up and down the stairs to go outside, so there you go) which makes it REAL easy to get the Bug in...he's so nosy, he jumps at the chance to come upstairs and find random food crumbs on the floor, etc.
Jackson is another story. He is an elderly statesman to be sure, but his get up and go can kick in when you least expect it. So I was a tad concerned when I saw him continue on down the road. First of all, he's going deaf. So there's that. But even if he could hear me, he wouldn't listen anyway because he's a ramblin' man. He could run away in a second given the chance. And he's surprisingly fast. So I ran after him (entertainment for the neighbors) and finally got his attention, he actually fell for the same line about going into the house. The novelty of hanging out upstairs was far greater than his desire to roam free. This time.
The hard part was getting them all coordinated. I had to get two curious dogs and an amused toddler downstairs, all the while making sure that the dog(s) don't get down there before I do and get back out the blown open gate before I can secure the premises. It was a bit like The Three Stooges (perhaps I'm the 4th Stooge in this scenario) trying to wrangle this motley group into doing the same thing at the same time.
And bless his heart, Jack's kinda dumb, too, so this complicated matters in that the simple instructions of "Let's go downstairs!" kept getting confused in his mind as "Let's go back outside!" and he kept running to all the doors: the front door, the kitchen door, garage door, the door to the deck that no longer exists...you get the point. And it never occured to him to go to the basement door. Sigh....
In the meantime, the Bug was already headed downstairs with the Little Nugget (God help us all when these two get together) and he is the escape artiste extraordinaire. So I had to go check on the ornery twins downstairs, then run back up to check on Jack's progress, and of course he was distracted from the task at hand by the trash can, recycling, unpacked boxes, dirty laundry and anything else along the way in the garage. Danged bassett hound sniffer. Several futile attempts later, I finally convinced him it would be awesome to go downstairs, and strangely enough, he followed me.
What an ordeal! I'll spare you from how many times I stepped in dog crap while securing the gate.