Coco continues to settle in nicely with only a few speed bumps. I’ve mentioned before that the challenge (and at the same time, the fun part) of helping them adjust to a home life is their second puppy hood and learning to live in a home environment. It takes a while for their personalities to emerge as they discover new boundaries and interests. I mean, they change a LOT from when they first come off the track.
Coco is proving to be a kook. This shouldn’t shock anyone. Everyone in this house lets their freak flag fly. Except Oscar. He is always very concerned with being a good boy and gets genuinely distressed when he perceives that someone else is doing something they shouldn’t. I don’t know if that is a product of being abandoned but he is always trying to follow the rules. And set them.
Coco seems to have little concept of rules. Her whole life until now has been regimented so now it must just seem like a free-for-all (I assure you, it isn’t). She’s been seeking out those boundaries. Some journeys more successful than others.
One of her big discoveries was that she could jump up on the bed. She spent a few weeks wanting to get up on the bed and putting her front paws and elbows up but then would just move her hind paws up and down like she should take a really big step. I found it amusing that this world-class athlete didn’t believe she could do something as simple as jump. But she did eventually figure it out. And immediately started applying it in ways I wasn’t too happy about.
When I leave for the day I baby-gate the dogs into the family room/kitchen area. That’s where their food, water, dog beds, toys, couch, and TV are so they have everything they need in that single space. It leaves the rest of the house free for the cat to wander unmolested as well as protect my bed from being dug up too vigorously (thus ripping the sheets) and prevents accidents on the rug. I swear, it was right after the Coco-adoption-check cleared when she started doing interesting things. At first, I was finding her on the other side of the baby-gate when I came home from work. One day, I hadn’t even finished locking the door as I left when I heard her jump the gate.
I even tried putting up two baby gates, one on top of the other. This made the baby-gate barrier about 5.5 feet high but she just immediately knocked the top one out.
A few days later I was on my way out the door and Coco was throwing a fit that I was leaving without her. I heard her clear the gate and turned around to see her standing on top of the table that is near the baby-gate (I was trying to decide whether or not to replace the existing buffet with this table so I had them side by side making this way closer to the doorway than it would normally be). It’s higher than the average table but there she was…standing on top. Jumping off this was a piece of cake and revealed the secret of her escaping the baby gate.
Less than a week later, we came home to find Coco standing on the kitchen counter. Just standing there. She was trembling but I’m not sure if that was excitement that I was home or she was scared to jump down (she doesn’t love the laminate floors since she can slip on them when she does things like jump off of counters).
Only a few days after that I came home and couldn’t find her. She wasn’t at the baby-gate with Oscar. I didn’t see her anywhere in the family room or any of the other rooms. I was starting to get frantic and was fairly sure someone had come in and stolen her, when I noticed Oscar. The whole time I’m running around the house and calling her, he is standing in the kitchen with a funny look on his face. I finally looked up from the floor, where I’m used to seeing my dogs, and I see Coco on the stove. ON THE STOVE! This time I did have the presence of mind to quick take a picture. She was curled up funny like she had gotten up there, slipped around, and now was afraid to move.
She’s wearing a racing muzzle in this picture. They are very loose, she can still eat, drink, even pick up and toss a toy, but it prevents her from chewing and eating things that are bad for her. She has a tendency to chew and EAT her squeaky toys. I’m sure we’ll work that out as she settles into her new life but right now, for her own safety, I utilize that muzzle when I’m not here to take things out of her mouth.
Since her stove adventure, she’s pretty subdued when I leave for the day. She immediately goes to the couch as if to say, “I’d prefer to stay here all day if you don’t mind.” This is a relief as I thought I would have to put some kind of child safety locks on the controls for the stove so she didn’t hurt herself.
We seem to be entering a quiet period. This could be because she learned her lesson or it’s the eye of the hurricane. I’m afraid I suspect hurricane. She is the first dog I’ve had where I decided right away I needed to have pet insurance. Is it ethical to bubble wrap a dog?