It Takes A Village–To Feed A Dog?

Have you wondered where we store dog food in a tiny boat? Or if we schlep gigantic bags of kibble from the store on our backs?

Or if poor Honey is even being fed properly at all (don’t ask her; she lies).

Wonder no more. Today I reveal how it takes a village to feed a dog.

How do you feed a boat dog?

Finally we’re talking about something important–food!

The Old Days

Ahh, I remember the old days when feeding Honey was easy.

We were lucky that our grocery store carried her favorite food in a refrigerator case. Life was simple then.

I’d add two twelve pound rolls to my back pack with my other groceries, lug them onto the bus, and then walk them several blocks home from the bus stop.

Once home, Honey’s food went into the fridge which automatically stayed cold without me running a battery charger or hooking into an electrical socket outside the front door.

Yep, those were the good old days when feeding my dog was easy.

But someone had the bright idea of moving onto a boat. Oh, yeah, that was me.

So now how do I feed Honey?

Honey the golden retriever holds her stuffed polar bear.

Sorry, Bear. But if it comes down to a battle for survival, I may have to eat you.

Feeding Honey

Currently, it’s a two-mile walk, each way, to the closest grocery store.

Even if they sold food I’d be willing to feed Honey, I’d hate to walk it back to the marina.

And the closest pet store is about 25 miles round trip. A pretty long walk, even for me.

If only someone would send Honey’s food right to the boat. That would be great.

Chewy To The Rescue

Years ago, I wrote about how Chewy.com saved my life. Could they do it again, even if I didn’t have a permanent address?

I decided to put them to the test.

Until we head South, we’re in the Cambridge marina. In fact, our boat is docked right across from the dock master’s office. We should be able to get Honey’s food delivered to the office, right?

Except for one thing—the office I can see from the deck of my boat doesn’t have an address.

If you look up the address for the Cambridge Municipal Yacht Basin on google maps, it gives you a site in a light house at the farthest corner from where we are. And up a bunch of stairs.

The address you’d expect the office to have belongs to the Cambridge Yacht Club which shares a parking lot with the marina.

Could I get Chewy.com to deliver food to a location without an address?

The short answer? Yes, yes I could.

Before I placed my dog food order online, I called the Chewy customer service line and spoke to a very helpful woman named Tess (BTW, Chewy, Tess deserves a big raise).

I explained my situation and wondered if we could use a description of the office (brick office on Mill Street before the yacht club) for the delivery address. After all, mail gets delivered to that building so it’s local knowledge that it exists.

Tess called the Chewy staff who work with Fed Ex and confirmed that we could use a descriptive address that the delivery person should understand.

Tess took down lots of details for the delivery information, including the name of my boat. She told me the delivery would arrive either Saturday or Monday. Since this was Friday, I assumed I’d be looking for Honey’s food on Monday.

Boy, was I wrong.

Honey the golden retriever dines outdoors.

There’s a strange man looking at the engine. That means I get to dine al fresco.

Chewy Saves The Day

I got an email at 8:30 Friday night telling me Honey’s food had shipped. No, I wouldn’t expect it to arrive Saturday. That would be crazy.

We were out all day Saturday and when I passed by the dock master’s office on Sunday morning, there was a big box with the Chewy logo on it.

Yep, they delivered Honey’s food overnight to a building without an address.

Way to go Chewy.

And now I know how we’ll be feeding Honey as we travel south.

We’ll arrange shipments to marinas and even to post offices who will hold packages for “yachts in transit” (yep, it’s a thing). And since Chewy ships so quickly, I won’t have to plan far in advance to make sure Honey gets her food on time.

Now I just have to store it.

Honey the golden retriever on the boat with her chewy box of food.

How did Chewy know where to find me? There are lots of other boats here.

Ships Stores Of Dog Food

When Honey’s food arrives, I measure out ten cups into heavy freezer bags. I label the freezer bags with the amount, type of food, and date. Every bag goes into a deep locker under a settee (couch on a boat) next to the autopilot’s compass.

When all the food is sealed into freezer bags, I fold up the original bag and put it in with one of the freezer bags of food.

If there was ever a recall of Honey’s food, I’d have the package information to know if our food lot was affected.

Bag of dog food.

A bundle of Honey’s food ready to go into deep storage.

The locker where we store Honey’s food stays cool because it’s below the waterline. And since we can’t store anything metal near the compass, dog food is a perfect fit.

I keep one bag in the galley and go into the deep locker when I need more.

Voila.

A Full Dog Is A Happy Dog

Honey doesn’t know who Chewy.com is. She can’t read, after all.

But I know she loves them.

Just like I do.

Honey the golden retriever dozes on the boat with Mike.

Glad to know that I’ll be getting my food no matter where we travel. Now I can just relax.

Your Turn: Do you have any clever tricks for buying or storing your dog’s food? 

(Nope, Chewy did not pay me for writing this post. I’m just so impressed I had to spread the word.)

 

 

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Comments

  1. Wow, that’s a lot of work…you are really dedicated to this boating thing aren’t you? That’s great that Chewy can get you Homey’s food, one convenience to really appreciate.

  2. We use Chewy too. We usually do general delivery, but that can be tricky with some Post Offices. And I love how fast they ship!

  3. I bought a second freezer this year so that I can stock up on food. Now I just need to get my boyfriend to clean the garage – he keeps clogging my path to the 2nd freezer with more tools. LOL

  4. Oh boy! That all sounds like a lot of work, but it works for you and that is what matters. Chewy.com is awesome!

  5. I do love how speedy Chewy is. So far I have always received Blueberry’s treats a couple days earlier than expected. I do wish they had more variety – there are some things I would like to get through them but they just don’t have it. I will have to remember to video tape Blueberry’s reaction when a Chewy box arrives. She’s kind of like a maniac.

    • Did you see the printing on the Chewy delivery box asking for pics of pets sitting in Chewy boxes? They say that might send a little treat if they see a dog sitting on a Chewy box on FB.

      That might be a fun trick for Blueberry to learn. And I’d love to see a video of Blueberry getting her Chewy delivery. :)

  6. Chewy really does get the stuff to you quickly! I ordered a life vest for Wilson and I had it in my grubby little hands in under 24 hours! No rush delivery.

  7. That’s awesome!!! Way to go Chewy! :-)

  8. So glad you got Honey’s food with the help of Chewy.com. Now we know she won’t starve at sea! lol

  9. Chewy really is amazing!

  10. I love Chewy.com, too! They have the best prices – online AND in-store! – and the absolute BEST customer service anywhere! Being a retired CSR myself, I am extremely picky when it comes to quality service.

    • People who work in customer service get all my sympathy. It’s a really tough job. And I always try to remember the people I’m talking to aren’t usually the cause of my problem.

      But I’ve had such much horrible customer service (particularly from large charities and financial services) that I have to rave when I find something excellent. :)

  11. We love Chewy.com too! Talk about going the extra mile for you and your Honey – WOW! That was one great story!