Thought Wheel

From the mind of Ann Chiappetta

Kitten Training 101

| Filed under Relationships

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Noodle the kitten is developing into a well socialized domesticated feline. April, our daughter, took the time finding just the right kitten. He is mellow, confident, and is advancing in his training. The photos show Noodle in a harness and leash and sitting in a grocery cart. Before anyone cries out that this is not a service animal, allow me to say it was a quick and necessary exposure for him and he passed with flying colors, taking it all in and staying in place.

Noodle rides in the car in his harness, walks willingly into a cat carrier, (most of the time, lol) and has no fear of our dogs. Why is Noodle being trained like this? Our goal is to provide him with experiences so if one day he accompanies April on a plane or train, or when she moves or Noodle has to stay with us for some reason, Noodle will be calm and unstressed. He even is being trained to play fetch and is walking on his leash. Let’s say he is the kind of cat who might believe he belongs with dogs.

May dog is his cuddle buddy and Bailey has learned to tolerate Noodle and not play bow and bark at him. As for Papa, he is still giving the kitten the feline stink eye but lets the kitten eat from his bowl and get close without becoming evil kitty. The difference between Noodle and Papa is that Papa was traumatized as a kitten and Noodle wasn’t. This allows him to be more open to new and unusual experiences.
What’s the saying? Cats rule and dogs drool?
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Catnip Anyone?

| Filed under Guide dogs Poem Relationships

Our daughter, April, moved out six months ago. We are now empty nesters, at least most of the time. Wouldn’t you know it, April and her partner, Danny, decided to practice parenting by adopting a kitten. His name is Noodle because he loves to eat ramen noodles.

He’s now about eight weeks old and is black with a little white patch on his chest. He’s at that funny stage where he runs sideways and gets scared after he gets up on something, cries until he’s rescued. Adorable.

Right now, as I write this, he is stalking us around the Livingroom, shooting out from under the furniture and popping at our ankles or doggy noses, no claws, thank goodness. Papa is not sold on the little black demon, mewing his distress. He is getting used to Noodle, though, coming up and sniffing him. May wants to mother the kitten, sometimes a little too much and Bailey is just a huge doofus who doesn’t know his own strength of curiosity. We caught him trying to nibble a tiny paw, so he is on the watch list.

Noodle loves boxes and the laser pointer is the only way to get him out from under the bed when we want to catch him. We are careful with it, as the dogs also love the laser pointer.

I think with time Papa and Noodle will get along. We are not forcing interactions and taking it slowly. He’s a lucky little kitty and he is already well socialized, likes to ride in cars, goes willingly into a carrier, and has come to trust our dogs.
Play
By Ann Chiappetta

Ebony kitten stalks its prey
Amid discovery of
each day. Fearless hunter dives
tags the target, then
hides to find another.

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Noodle in a box looking up at the camera.

by Ann Chiappetta | tags : | 2

Home is Where the Bark is

| Filed under Guide dogs Relationships

Sometimes one of the dogs does something that is funny and openly undignified., at least that is how we humans view it. We love them for living in the moment and finding opportunity to fulfill their doggy drive for affection, comfort, and sustenance. Below is a photo of yellow lab Bailey foregoing his training, and his timing is perfect.
PD: Bailey sitting on the bed behind Annie, who is also sitting on the bed eating a yogurt. Bailey’s head is on her shoulder, staring fixedly at the yogurt.
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Adventures of May Dog

| Filed under Relationships

“I’m missing a lollipop,” says Jerry.
“Look in May’s crate for it,”
A minute later, Jerry returns with the as yet uneaten candy, still in the wrapper.
“She hid it under the towel in her crate,”
Saving it for later, I guess.

close up of May dog

May dog face close-up