HIGHTOWER: Dog Scout Camp

Time for another trip [space music] into the Far, Far, Far-Out Frontiers of Free Enterprise.Today, Spaceship Hightower takes you to the sometimes odd world of summer camp, where your little ones get to spend a week away from home learning about fun things and frolicking in the great outdoors.Only, at the camps I'm talking about, you go with your little ones, and the "little ones" aren't your kids -- they're your dogs. Yes, there are now summer camps ... for dogs. Wall Street Journal reporter Ericka Blount recently wrote about "Camp Gone to the Dogs" in Putney, Vermont. For as much as $950 a week, you and your dog can bunk-in with others and enjoy such fun as playing frisbee, square dancing and kissing contests. Kissing?Blount also reported on a place called "Dog Scout Camp", located on Michigan's Lake Gregory. You and your mutt share a cabin with two other sets of campers -- your dog sleeps in your bunk with you, or you can bring a doggie bed from home. You and your mutt can learn to swim together, go canoeing, attend lectures on topics of mutual interest (like "wolves and their Hybrids") and even spend the evening by the campfire eating s'mores together. Or, the two of you can do arts-and-crafts projects, like making paw prints of your pooch in clay. One lady told Blount that her sheepdog even learned to paint at camp -- she taped a brush to the pet's paw, dipped it in paint and turned the canine Picasso loose on a canvass. She claims it "turned out so well I hung it in my living room."Fido can earn all kinds of merit badges at Dog Scout Camp, too -- including badges for such environmentally-sound activities as beer-can pick up. During the rest of the year, the two of you can earn money for dog charities by going door-to-door selling Dog Scout Cookies.This is Jim Hightower saying ... Our world truly is going to the dogs.

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