Tag Archives: dogs and cats
Mostly they are saying ‘feed us!’
They crack me up. I did not realize when I was taking the last picture of Jolie, Charles, and Mini up the steps that Noel was at the top actually looking down to see when supper was coming. It amazes me sometimes that Mini Cooper is actually the 3rd dog. She is quick to be at the front door and wants to be part of whatever the pups are doing. Luckily, the dogs have never minded.
Are we boring you, Charles?
Note: If you may be wondering about the missing stair side piece. One day, about 20 years ago, V wanted to see what was under the fancy piece. And, so it has remained. That is life at the DogDaz Zoo.
I do not know exactly what Noel and Mini Cooper knew, but when they started guarding Louise while she slept, I got nervous. I know that animals are much more in tune with each other than we are with them. They know who is sick and who has something going on long before our senses even begin to wake up. So when the cats gathered around Lulu, I was on alert.
Noel had started to stare at Louise and stay close. That is unusual behavior here at the zoo, though sometimes if Mini can, she will try to lick a dog’s face and ears, which quickly Lulu will tell her to ‘bug off’ and Charles will take a quick snap.
Being the oldest (15 and 3 months), of course, Miss Noel sometimes takes a short nap even while doing an important job..
Lulu is OK. Her condition has not changed that I know of, however, when the animals talk, I really try to listen.
Have a wonderful Wednesday.
Note to readers: This is a long and sad post, but I think it is time you knew.
The new normal is not normal, at least not yet. Going from 7 to 5 animals has taken us to many different places in the last month. We are adjusting, but it will take time. Losing both the lead cat and the lead dog within a week of each other has us in a bit of a tailspin. Actually, I think the zoo is adjusting better than I am.
Noel & Mini
I think Mini really has taken the loss of her brother, and mischief partner, Nine, the hardest. She was so attached to him and really needs another animal to play with. She always whined but now, OMCat, she is constantly needing attention. Noel, being 15 and never being a social cat, gives Mini a little sniff now and then, but basically, Noel wants to sleep and cuddle with me. Mini would love to play with Charles, but he wants nothing of it.
Stella, of course, who is constantly in motion (hence the blur), knows nothing of the loss of Nine and Sofie, so she just carries on being Stella. I think that Mini is talking to her under the door more because I am hearing a lot of hissing going on. Stella, as you may remember, lives in her own suite, and loves it. I wish she could be friends with the other animals, but she just ‘wants to be alone,’ (except for humans, of course). She actually did like Sofie coming to visit, but it wasn’t that often that it will affect her.
Louise & Charles
And then there is Louise and Charles. Though Louise had Sofie in her life for 11 years (Lulu is 12), I am not sensing a big change in her mood or routine. Lulu was always very quiet and self-contained at home and just goes about doing her thing. She mostly lives in her own world and just carries on, cancer and all (but that is another story). They may have been together all these years, but I think Sofie needed Louise more than the other way around. Louise leans on me and that is about it.
Charles, being the FOMO (fear of missing out) dog that he is, followed (and feared) Sofie, I guess because she was the loudest, but also because she was something to be feared when you are only 17lbs. At first, after she was gone, he looked for her, especially when they went out in the yard. He was not sure what was going on, ‘where’d she go?’ but now, several weeks later, he follows Louise instead.
It Is Very Different Now Without Sofie
The zoo is much quieter now without all Sofie’s endless barking, and sad but true, much safer for all the animals with her gone; all her anxiety and aggression no longer permeates the house. I did not blog much about her battle, for years, with mental illness, though I have many posts in draft that never were published.
With Sofie gone, Charles no longer has to eat with the kennel door closed to stay safe from Sofie’s food aggression and the cats no longer have to sneak past her, fearful they could be attacked at any moment. There is no more resource guarding, fear-biting, or constant nibbling on something for security. There is no more endless barking at every sound (she could hear a fox a mile away or a UPS truck), because she needed to make it go away or stop. There are no more sleepless nights trying to console her when thunderstorms rolled through or fireworks blasted. I don’t have to constantly make sure that Charles is at a safe distance from her, because his little-dog frenetic energy would freak her out and she would attack him. And, near the end, she started biting Louise at feeding time (in the mouth where Louise’s tumor is). She just could not control her anxiety and aggression and neither could I.
Sofie was taking 6, sometimes 7, different medications for anxiety, aggression, and pain, multiple times a day, so that schedule is now gone for me.
But, after years of Sofie being by my side, sometimes so close that I stepped on her; being so present and constant and needing so much care and attention from me, the void is huge. She made me laugh. She could be so silly. She smiled at me and loved me in a way no other dog ever had. She was my cuddle dog. Despite her fears and anxiety, she was my heart and I believe I was her’s. After you have taken care of a sick animal (or human) for years, especially if the care is around mental health issues, you feel guilty that you feel relieved when they die. You feel empty because every day for years, you took special care of that being, many days with an exhausting routine, but you did it because you loved them.
Nine was an easy cat. I think sometimes, the good child doesn’t get as much attention because the ‘problem children’ suck all the energy out of you. But there is also a big hole where his energy used to be in the zoo. We feel it every night when we sit in the living room and he is not there. We feel it in the laundry room, which was his favorite place, and he isn’t in his bed by the furnace; or climbing in the rafters.
Finding a new balance will take time.
But I know they are waiting for us on the rainbow bridge.
And now we are 5.
Mini just loves Charles. I am not sure that it is reciprocal. Charles loves two beings in this world, well maybe three. He loves his human, V, he loves me, maybe because I am the feeder, the walker, the one that handles any booboos or scary things, and he loves Sofie, the dog (who mostly hates his guts).
I think Charles is the first, One-Person dog, that I have ever had. We got him because V wanted a little dog, more like a dog cat, for some strange reason. It is really weird when you understand that V doesn’t even really like dogs (which is crazy when you are married to an animal-obsessed person like me). I have never considered a very small breed, I tend to go for the bigger dogs, and I never really thought about dogs that are attached to only one human.
Charles is a Pomeranian Chihuahua mix (as far as we can tell – no DNA test ever done). These breeds tend to show extreme loyalty toward and preference for only one person above all others. They will try to rule the household if that person lets them (which is definitely a problem here at the zoo). Charlie is extremely strong-minded and wants to rule the couch, especially if there is food anywhere around, which has caused several fur-raising situations.
Enter, fearless Mini Cooper. She just wants to be friends with everyone. She really likes Charles and wants to be near him. We have tried to arrange the couch pillows so they can be on different levels. They all want a lap, which is impossible. He may roll his eyes, but she will never stop trying to be near him. As you can see in this group of pictures, Mini is holding her ground (or lap as it may be). Ultimately, however, she will leave and he will get his way. Ah, the life of a small tyrant at the DogDaz Zoo.
What kind of mischief did you get into today?
Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤ i
Sofie: Just because you think you have the right to go upstairs, Nine, does not mean that I will let you pass!
Nine: You think you can stop me big drooling goofball? I am Nine. I will be so cute that Mom will pick me up and whisk me right over your panting head.
And so she did. The end.
What kind of mischief did you get into today?
I was making breakfast and I turned around and 5 of the 7 furballs were in the kitchen watching me. I am sure that they could not have wanted more to eat since they had all just eaten. But, of course, they do! Why are animals always hungry? Stella of course was in her private suite and Charles was sleeping with the retired human (usually until the crack of noon). No second breakfast for you boys and girls, sorry. But, lunch is only 5 hours away.
Have a wonderful Wednesday!
It is always interesting to see the cats mirror the dogs (or was this the other way around?) I don’t know if Lulu was there first or Nine.
I am used to the dogs mirroring the position of each other. Especially these two.
Do you mirror your siblings?