Two readers write:
We’re looking for some advice. We have a 6 year old Scottie (Pinecone) who likes to rule the roost. He’s great with kids but aggressive with some men, and other animals (though usually not dogs). He has a typical disdain for cats.
We’re introducing a kitten into the family and we’d love to hear from you. Any advice you could give us would be greatly appreciated.
Steve and Mary
But seriously folks:
Regular readers know that a kitten arrived at the Scottish Terrier and Dog News headquarters early in August. Basically, it was hell, with animals constantly tearing through our largely open-concept house, barking like crazy and preventing me from getting anything whatsoever done from brushing my teeth to blogging.
Admittedly it was not a good idea to introduce the kitten into the mix when I was the only human around and I was out at work most of the time, but there are complicated family and in-law reasons why it had to be this way and I will mercifully spare you all the details.
By the end of week one and after grovelling apologetically to the neighbours about all the noise, I called up Bridget’s sometime dog walker and sitter and begged her to take my dog away for the two last days I was on my own and at the office. Luckily, she obliged.
Once there was a trainer/babysitter/supervisor on the premises full-time, things improved dramatically. Our kitten, Penny, is quite brave and stopped cowering in the basement and began standing up to Bridget. Bridget now understands that aggression on her part may result in a painful swatting, but still believes it’s a risk which she must occasionally take, especially when she is being unmercifully taunted. After almost two months, we live in a state of uneasy truce, with at least one daily breach, but that’s a whole lot better than constant rocket attacks.
So, Steve and Mary, all this to say, I hope you will have someone at home to supervise and that you don’t live in an open concept house. And, seriously, good luck.
As for us, the next step is to set up a secret nanny cam to find out what goes on at the Scottish Terrier and Dog News headquarters when there are no humans on the premises. (Wonder if I can do that with my new iPod?) And, oh yes, I’ll also try to take a photo of the girls and post it.