Normally my sister takes care of him at her house.
But this year she will be in Maine when we are in Chicago, so my niece is staying at our house to take care of buddy.
What would we do indeed - that's why I don't have any pets!! When we had our cats we had (the only person we knew since we had just moved and didn't want to ask neighbors yet) my dh's new boss come in and feed/water them. He did it and was nice about it, but I'm sure it was a PITA for him. That's one of the reason's I'm so hesitant about getting a dog. When we travel, it's usually long distances and kenneling them for that long...I'm not to crazy about in addition to all the other vacation expenses and worrying about if they are treated well.
Friends of ours recently went on vacation for a week and we went over 3 times a day to feed/walk/water and keep their dog company. Personally I'd just wouldn't do that for that long of time, although we as caregivers didn't mind at all. However, I don't think I would ask someone for that long. Since I'm a SAHM it's easier, but most of my neighbors are not and I can't expect a friend to travel either - especially for 3 times a day!
The neighbors had a specific schedule for ds and wrote it all out for him and even gave him a route map for walks! Which was questionable because the dog was a horrible walker. I went out once with him (ds had never walked a dog) and this dog just kept straining, trying to pull me. Every time he got out of control I stopped (I'm sure it looked crazy) and told him that if he didn't walk nicely he was going home. After that ds just played with him in the yard in the shade for some exercise. I don't walk dogs that have bad walking habits and aren't trained correctly.
So for the 3 times a day, ds didn't mind, and it was really good for him to have this responsibility, which he took very seriously. The family bought him something from their trip and paid him well (which ds said, "there is no way...that is way too much", but they insisted and in the end he did end up taking it.