Fretting at the vet

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Biding her time before the vet comes back in

Yesterday was Maggie’s vet day. I hate vet day for my kitties. They’re both so freaked out by the experience that I, too, become a bit freaked out. I don’t know which cat is worse. Lucy shrieks through the entire car ride and then the entire wait in the lobby. But I have to go to great pains to even fool little Maggie into getting into her crate. It’s a not-so-well orchestrated moment that I just dread. If she gets so much as a whiff of what’s up, she darts under the bed and hides just beyond my reach. And then there’s all the fur that they both shed from the moment we hit the car to the moment we return. It’s exhausting, I tell ya.

Still a little nervous

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Checking out some scary noise in the distance

Well, it’s been almost six weeks and the little guy is becoming a lot more comfortable. He’s still a Nervous Nelly, though. I’m thinking this whole getting-used-to-Scott-and-Lori’s-house thing is going to take longer than we first thought. That’s OK. At least he’s not cowering in the corner every time I open a drawer or accidentally drop something. This whole process will help me to learn more patience I’m sure. (Yeah, right.)

Why are pets so expensive?

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Columbia River Gorge : August 2003

I have no idea what I’m going to do should we ever have children. When I walk into PetsMart (or any other pet store), I walk out having spent too much money on things my pets probably don’t need. Nylabones, fancy dog biscuits, catnip toys that get lost underneath the couch, dog beds that are never used, nifty pet hair removers that don’t remove pet hair, and countless toys that I feel obliged to offer up to my canines and felines. And that’s on top of the things they really do need. Look out for the spoiled progeny of the Smiths, world!

The reason I never make the bed

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Lucy in her favorite spot

When I get out of the shower, this is where I find Lucy. Every morning. Snoozing away. So how can I disturb her simply to make the bed? I just can’t bring myself to do it. I’m such a sucker!

Productivity (or lack thereof)

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Summit on Columbia River Gorge Drive, Oregon : August 2003

Working from home is great. It’s also not-so great. Especially when you’re actually trying to get the work done while your four pets create all sorts of havoc around you. The new guy, Pete, wants to be in the office with me and has the jitters about every little thing so he’s constantly pacing. Juliette barks at anyone who comes up the walkway, regardless of whether I’m on the phone. Lucy jumps up on the desk whenever she fancies and pads all over my papers, sending many to the floor. Maggie once mistook the brand-new iMac for the older version that was there the day before and tried to jump up on top of the monitor — only to have it go crashing to the desktop and scare the bejesus out of both of us. Those antics along with the piles of pet hair that collect daily in this house can be enough to drive a person batty.

A week later

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Perking up a bit

Well, it’s been a week. A tough one. Pete is a total sweetie, but it’s taking him a lot longer to settle in than it did with Juliette. There are too many new sights and sounds for him. I think he has sensory overload. But he’s starting to come out of his shell and relax somewhat. We’ve had to coax and cajole him into so many things, from simply eating out of the bowl to coming in the door once he’s gotten outside. The more relaxed he gets, the more we can too. And with how smoothly his first vet visit went this morning, I have more hope that beneath his skittish exterior beats the heart of a brave and peppy dog. Time will tell!

15 hours

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Trying to figure things out

We’ve made it through the first 1/2 day. Pete spent most of his life in Mackenzie’s Animal Sanctuary, so he’s a bit befuddled by this whole house thing. Everyday things make him nervous, like screen doors, food bowls with dog paws painted on them and refrigerators. But he seems to be faring well. And he hasn’t gone in the house yet. Give him time, though, I’m sure he has a few tricks up his sleeve!

Dog day

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Juliette in repose

This is the day we affectionately call “Dog Day.” It’s the day that Pete comes to visit. If he does well, (i.e., gets along with Juliette and doesn’t eat my cats), then he stays. Tonight. Permanently.

We’re pretty excited about this. Yet there’s a bit of trepidation on my part. Another dog means more of everything. More fur. More poop. More obedience classes. More vet bills. More food, supplies, etc. More responsibility. Also more affection, doggie kisses and fun. It’s a change. A good one. But it’s going to take a few days or more to adapt. For everyone in the household, not to mention Pete himself. Let’s just keep our fingers crossed that he and Juliette get along. And that he doesn’t do something crazy like pee on my furniture.