The organized dog

This is the best he can do on a Monday

In the run up to Baxter's homecoming, I thought I had everything figured out. I had a little basket of toys and supplies, a crate, a mat, and a stack of books about training and nutrition. Within weeks, the basket of toys was overflowing and the stack of books had grown (thanks to well meaning friends and family who passed along their books). Soon after, I realized that there was a whole world of dog collars out there that I needed.

To handle the growing collection, I installed an Elfa pantry organizer from The Container Store on the back of the coat closet door. I used bins to store hats and mittens on the top of the door and added an accessory bar to wrangle Baxter's collars, leashes, and tags. Oh, and his formal wear (click that link for his 007 impression) and Doggles.

After many upgrades, we've now arrived at the last (and largest) toy bin, which is actually a closet storage bin from Home Goods. This thing is big enough to hold all of Baxter's toys, but low enough that he can dig in it when he's searching for something specific.

Whenever the bin gets like this, I know it's time for some purging. There are probably some toys buried in there that Baxter doesn't need any more.

Does anyone else have a toy and collar collection like Baxter's? My boyfriend is convinced this is over the top. I don't think it's all that it?

Added at 9:15 AM: I actually found pictures of the supplies I had on hand when Baxter came home. It seemed like I had so much, but looking back, it makes me laugh.


  1. love it - we need some organizing ourselves. Our bin is a wooden crate. . . and um, you HAVE seen our toy collection, right? ;) the porcupine from when we visited is still alive, although the fox has lost most of it's innards. Still a tail squeaker though.

  2. OMG! Insane! Just kidding. You and I are very different pet owners. :) I have two collars and two leashes for each of my dogs, and that's it. They do, however, have 3 or 4 shirts/coats each. My dogs have about 2 toys and a few old bones - they always play with only one toy so I keep the collection limited. But now you're making me feel guilty. . . maybe I need to get them more!

  3. We have 2 leashes, 1 collar and maybe 4-5 toys. Burt would much rather us spent the doggie budget on rawhide chews than anything rubber or fabric.

  4. seasonal collars? Shamrocks for March, cupcakes for June (birthday month), lobsters for the summer, brown and orange for the fall, red for the holidays...and a bowtie for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and Easter.

    The people who work at the stores where I buy this stuff must laugh when they see me. Bax even has three different Gentle Leader harnesses to coordinate with his collars/leashes.

    Maybe I need to slow down.

  5. Awww Bax! LOL @ "This is the best he can do on a Monday" and "when he's searching for something specific". Hilarious!!

    OK, Baxter has more collars than I have purses! Not over the top at all. =]

  6. when we first got our 2 dogs we gave one a red collar and one a blue collar... our friends and family gets confused if we try to switch that up so we just stick to the basic red and blue. although i did get red and blue plaid last time :-) we only have one collar each and 2 leases - of different lenghts - each. the husband does not like to spend $$ on these things. i do spoil them with toys though, don't worry!

  7. Our Westie, Hobbes, has one collar and one leash. His favorite toy is a tennis ball, and somehow we always have 5 or 6 of them rolling around, getting underfoot. I have a basket for them, but he just takes them all out every time I put them away. He can't have stuffed toys as he rips them to shreds quickly. My sister is more like you...her golden has several collars (seasonal, birthday, girly) and some hilarious toys.
    Oh, I received my lovely gold candles in the mail today! Thanks!

  8. Our dog only has one collar and 3 leashes. But he does have a wicker bin with all his rawhide chews and "dead" chew toys that used to squeak. Just wanted to say that Baxter is a beautiful dog. And he's lucky to have such a doting human as you to live with. :-)

  9. Clyde's toy box definitely looks like Baxter's!

    His treats and food take up an entire kitchen cabinet and he definitely has a cookie jar all to himself! And of course all of his 'supplies' take up a large shelf in the hall closet.

    He only has two collars that he never wears because he just scratches at them. And one of them is a Patriots collar - a birthday present from dad. Yick, sports, yick!

    And I'm embarrassed to say Clyde has only two harnesses and two leashes. Baxter has definitely outdone him here!!

    One set is the lobster set that we found in Orient Point at the shop owned by two Frenchies (!!!). But the harness is a bit bulky and I feel like it's uncomfortable for his little armpits. And of course, you have the same lobster set, but I think with a regular collar!

    So I bought him a plain black soft Puppia harness and a plain black & red retractable leash which we use anytime we go out. But now I NEEEEEEEEEED that cupcake leash! I like the idea of using it for his birthday month!!

    Now here's where it gets a little embarrassing for me... Clyde's jackets, sweaters, shirts and bandanas take up the top rack of my (teeny) closet!! I even went out and bought baby hangers for his clothes. And he ran out of hangers after Christmas. I don't have an addiciton. I really don't.

  10. I was afraid to show a picture of Baxter's cupboard. He has one, too. I switched to one cookie jar...a simple, white one I found at Home Goods for something like $12.

    The cupcake collar is by Bella Bean. They come in pink, blue, and green with white cupcakes and green with multi-colored cupcakes. Bax got the collar for his 1st birthday and the leash for his 2nd...they're a splurge, so I split them up.

    Bax only has one jacket...but being a retriever, he has plenty of hair. The jacket's just for the rain and snow, so he doesn't get too, too wet.

    I LOVE the thought of all those baby hangers! That's not embarrassing at all!

  11. Aww! He's such a lucky little pup :). Mine currently have a drawer with a few things, but nothing so elaborate!!

  12. That's not too bad at all and frankly I am so glad to see someone else like me.
    We have a small dog so in addition to all the toys, Leashes, collars and general doggy goodies he also has an entire waredrobe of clothes.
    Don't worry it's not too much until an entire closet is annexed. (that's when I'll slow down)


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