I’m feeling rich in animals today. This is Abby, who is still trying to be invisible, or leaves the area whenever Amber is around.
This is Smoke, our recently adopted cat. She follows Amber and me around the house on our walks, stalking, baiting, then smacking Amber in the mouth if she gets close enough. She is asleep on my daytimer and dog notes here.
Molly is TRYING to accept the new situation. Amber won’t leave her alone, always jumping up, trying to lick her in the face, trying to get her to play. We’re enforcing ‘together time’ on the porch at least once a day, with one of us out there to monitor. We’re making slow progress. We’re giving Molly lots of extra love and attention to help her with the transition. She sits with one of us in the evenings while we’re watching TV, watching a movie, or reading.
And this is Amber at 10 weeks. We adopted her last Saturday. She is definitely making progress, having had to leave the only animal and people family she had ever known and come to live with two new people, two hostile cats, and one hostile dog. She is adapting better and better each day. She makes the Energizer Bunny look like an old, feeble senior rabbit.
It was raining hard this morning when I went to get Amber out of her crate and take her for her first morning walk. She is starting to associate “HURRY UP” with taking care of business. Clutching the umbrella and holding it as close to me as possible because of gusty winds, we went to what we HOPE will become ‘her spot,’ and she did all that was required, receiving treats and “Good Girl!”s.
We got back onto the porch, where I dried her off with a towel and fed her, then squeegeed as much water off the floor as possible.
I decided that a laundry basket would be good as a toy box. I ended up putting it on its side, though, as she couldn’t get into it unless she pulled the laundry basket over. We’ll adapt as she grows.
We got a bin with a lid to sit on the table, holding all the ‘stuff’ we need out there, but keeping interesting stuff out of sight. She puts her paws on the table, trying to reach enticing things. We now have everything in the closed bin on top of the table, accessible to US, but not to Amber.
Our days are long, comprised of long walks with Amber, playing with her, and trying to train her, giving our other animals the love and attention they need, and trying to get the have-to’s done otherwise before falling into bed.
We had our friend, Carla, over yesterday afternoon to meet Amber. She said that labrador retrievers were ‘puppies’ until they are two years old! I may not live long enough to get us through puppyhood if it’s going to be like this for that long. Carla also made a very good suggestion that we use the command, “OFF!” to mean for her to get paws off of us, the table, etc., rather than using “DOWN,” which would mean lying down on the floor. Carla and my brother-in-law, Bill, suggested that we make a point of touching her feet, her mouth, her ears, etc., a lot so that trimming toe nails, putting in ear medicine, and trips to the vet will go much more easily.
I’m hoping that all of our efforts each day will result in our animals at least learning to tolerate each other, if not being actual friends eventually.
Meanwhile, I’m looking for a sugar-free, low carb energy drink…