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Friday, December 01, 2006

Curtis Learns Manners With Annie the Cat

We had a minor breakthrough today with Curtis and Annie the cat. After 2 weeks of Annie hiding in the basement I decided a little intervention was needed and ... I miss her. I brought Annie upstairs to break the ice so to speak. Curtis was very fixed on her, which is what we're working on. I made him sit and every time he got that "look" I corrected him with an "ah ah". I then would walk towards him and make him back up. He listens so well and did exactly what I asked of him. He finally laid in his bed with me standing over him holding the cat. I gently pushed him over on his side with my foot and gave him a belly rub with my foot while holding the cat. Did I mention I'm a multi tasker:) Too bad nobody was here to take a picture of that. The whole time this is going on, Morgan just kept sleeping in her tight little ridgeback ball. You all know the position when 70 pounds of RR turns into the size of a basketball. Anyway, Mr. Curtis was a perfect gentleman. When I turned to let Annie back to the safety of the basement, Curtis tried to follow. I told him to sit and wait, which he did. I was so proud of him. Imagine the self control it took for him to do that. Then we celebrated. Morgan loves this part. We celebrate a lot around here lately...every time Curtis poops or pees outside, or comes when he's called, we celebrate and Morgan joins in dancing around Curtis and licking his ears. It's fun and Curtis just puffs up with pride. So, today was a good day and we are one step closer to our "pack" being whole again. Besides, I miss my purr box lulling me to sleep.


At 12/01/2006 8:10 PM, Blogger Beth said...

Well, you go, Patti!! Sounds to me like you are the dog and cat whisperer rolled into one! While your kitty, Annie, may have been thinking, "gotta get my gun" (sorry, poor punny reference to "annie get yer gun") - you described a perfect scenario for "intervention". RRs can be difficult with kittys, but with an unbiased subject, like Mr C, I see him "getting it" within the next couple days as long as you keep pushing the issue (within reason, of course). You should be large and in charge and with your multi-tasking skills, nobody is going to step out of line with the lesson at hand. BRAVO - for putting that little extra add into it so that you can enjoy your pack in toto sooner, rather than later!

At 12/02/2006 4:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good boy, Curtis! Patti you are amazing... Even though I would love to add a kitty to our family, my experience with RRs does not bode well for this. 2 out of 3 of them have had extremely high prey drives. Our first came close to killing a neighbor's cat (ended up that she almost died from a bacterial infection inflicted by the cat when she bit her in self defense). Wrigley is super prey driven - so far 2 squirrels and one chipmunk have been "taken care of" by him. Would have been a lot more if we encouraged this behavior or let him out without warning all mammals in the yard :)


At 12/02/2006 11:18 AM, Blogger evelyn said...

Patti - You're a natural!!! When will you (please!) consider fostering for RRUS?!?

At 12/02/2006 11:34 AM, Blogger Patti said...

Thanks for the compliment Evelyn but even through my rose colored ridgeback glasses, I know my limitations and leave that awinspiring job to people like you whom I call human saints. But I will do the contact thing and help weed out those not fit for a ridgeback:)

At 12/07/2006 8:56 PM, Blogger Debi said...

Patti, your work with Curtis is awesome! The celebrations are a great idea. It is rewarding to see our dogs "puff up" with confidence - a little different than our cats "puffing up" when they're scared. Kuddos to you!

At 12/08/2006 9:30 PM, Blogger Beth said...

Hey Patti,

I've been thinking about you and your pack... are you all peacefully cuddled up, one and all? Has Annie given Curtis the appropriate rundown on "cat rulz"? We are rooting for you ;)

At 12/10/2006 7:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greetings Patti and Family!..
I am thrilled to see the photos of Curtis and read the great postings about his transition into your family. It has made my week to read both your posts and Becca's on Nora/Ellie.
I was their first foster, and had them for a bit after picking them up.
They both stole my whole familys hearts. (Even my husband who is not a "dog kinda guy.")
Curtis was a total gentleman the whole time he was here..We have 2 female rescues, and the time spent here, Curtis was a strong, gentle force in the pack..
The fact that you are going to use him as a therapy dog is perfect..he will excell at it!
I am so pleased that he has such a wonderful home and family!
Blessings to you and your whole family!

At 12/11/2006 8:22 AM, Blogger Patti said...

Hi Robin,
I can't thank you enought for your rescue efforts with Curtis and Nora. We just love Curtis to pieces. He is as you said a strong gentle force. Such an easy keeper and a great influence on our Morgan. Knowing that he a had people like you and Ev at the start of his new life warms my heart. Please keep in touch and if you have any Curtis stories, I'd love to hear them.

At 12/12/2006 8:17 AM, Blogger Patti said...

Hi Beth,
We are making progress. I bring Annie up an sit in a chair with me in the evening. Curtis has gotten hissed at when he's put his big ol nose right in her face so he stays back a bit and just watches out of the corner of his eye. Morgan will actually put herself between them as to protect her and lay down. She's been through this whole routine when she first came to live with us so she knows what's going on. Curtis will eventually lay down too. I think if I keep this up, one day Annie will appear and Curtis will be fine. It took about 4 weeks with Morgan but I forced the issue more with her. I figure Annie is out numbered now so she's proably a bit more cautious. So far so good.


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