Together At Last

I constructed a chair today. Tomorrow, a desk. Then I set up my computer. And my efforts towards world conquest will continue.

Context: I refer to this page a lot when talking about Ren or Stimpy so I should clarify Ren is my sweetheart’s Chihuahua. Stimpy is my calico standard American shorthair cat. These are not their actual names.

🐶 So I’ve been learning Ren tricks. I gave him a dried pig ear (a well-loved doggie treat), and instead of badgering me all the time for attention (he is bored and a bit attention deprived), Ren went to his bed, buried the ear underneath it and guarded it vigilantly. On one hand, this meant glowering at me all day from his bed, growling when I got too close and even snapping at me. On the other hand, he was content all day to guard his pig ear, and wasn’t desperate for attention when I was cleaning or petting the cat or doing computery stuff. Even when it became walky time, he wasn’t really interested. Pig ear. Must guard the pig ear.

I walked Ren anyway. When he gets growly-snappy, I snatch him up and give him (gentle) gorilla cuddles while he’s confused. From that, the transition to the leash was quick, and even though he was certain Stimpy was going to steal his pig ear while he was gone. It was still there on his return.

I also learned that when I sing in tenor (which I might do spontaneously while working), he barks at me like I’m some otherworldly alien. That may be useful someday.

🐱 Stimpy seems to have figured out how to manage the selective pet feeder. Stimpy has to be near it for a full second before it opens up. But as with many cats, Stimpy likes an appetizer, such as a bit of cream or a treat before wanting to munch at her regular food. One of my ways to accommodate this preference is to supplement her regular mush (paté!) with a small bit of a dearer, fancier mush. This led to the routine of: Come for the fancy tidbit, stay for the surprise pop-open meal! By this morning food had been disappearing sight unseen, but I got to see this evening firsthand she had figured out how to open the selective pet feeder lid.

Stimpy also seems more relaxed now. She purrs when I cuddle her in a safe place. She generally seems to like the new digs, if it weren’t for that damned dog. She still doesn’t trust Ren to behave in good faith.

…And as I was writing this, there’s a row between Ren and Stimpy. My guess as to what happened is this: Stimpy goes back to bed using the little stairwell on Ren’s side. Ren is all tucked in and in guard mode and growls and snaps at Stimpy. Stimpy realizes this is all the justification she needs to put that little rat-dog in his place.

So I took Ren for a walk.

That’s actually normal. If I’m up at this late hour, Ren gets a bedtime-walk, and that seemed to allow all involved parties to settle down and forget what happened. Ren doesn’t need to cross over to Stimpy’s side of the bed, so he should tuck in in peace.

I’ll probably get a stairwell for Stimpy to keep future bedtime contention to a minimum.

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