In the previous version of our life, there was considerably more sleep and a lot more freedom (what did we do with all of that time!?) - but with all that freedom, it would have been easier to let things like routine and discipline slip through our fingers. Had we gone that route, our now more crowded life wou...ld be that much more difficult to handle today.
Now that our family walks look like a mixed-species military walking through Irvington, I'm glad all the work we put in with our own dogs is paying off - each one has gone from absolutely terrible to a functioning member of a group that is bigger than themselves.
And the most important part for me is in the picture I'm posting here (while I had 4 dogs waiting tied to my waist). Now I get to start handing leashes off to my 2 year old and every member of the pack knows exactly what to do: Keep moving forward. It's an awesome feeling to see that even as a tiny, semi-coherent toddler, he's growing into a person who wants to be a useful part of our group.
It's a beautiful sense of cohesion and a fun feeling having so many being across two species all on the same page.
The cool thing about life is it is always changing and evolving. Even if things seem easy now - I encourage you to stay disciplined. Make sure you and your dog are living cohesively. That cohesive feeling is the best gift you and your dog can give each other.
All the work will pay off someday - even if you don't see it quite yet.