October 22 /07
Morrie, Daniel and I are thinking of getting a female Boxer puppy to be a companion for Chef. He really needs another dog in the house because he is constantly being spit on and hissed at by the cats who want nothing to do with him. Poor Chef only wants to play with them and is really gentle, but they aren't interested. He does a lot of whimpering when they're around, and he seems stressed out by the presence of two cats who ignore him and reject him. Not to mention that the cats are stressed when he annoys them and when they're literally cornered by that huge, monsterous beast ! It's become a way of life for them to find ways to avoid him and places to hide from him. Beauty especially seems jealous when I shower Chef with affection and she's become very clingy with me since he arrived. She's 15 now and should not have to spend her old age in an unhappy situation. Rugrat has emerged from the closet, which was basically her home for months (a large, walk-in) but now she'll only come downstairs at night when Chef's asleep.
I have always believed that house pets should have at least one of their kind as companions; that even though dogs and cats have become domesticated, living exclusively among humans is unnatural for them. We have always had two of each pet, with the exception, so far, of Chef.
So for the good of all, another dog seems like the right thing to do, especially while Chef is still young and not likely to guard his territory too much.
Right now, Chef's breeder has a Boxer named Joplin who is ready to give birth to in about two weeks. I'm thinking of taking one of the pups but by the time the puppy comes to us, it will be mid-winter - an inconvenient time to have to take it outdoors every hour.
More importantly, it's occured to me that there's a chance the cats may react badly if yet another dog appears in the house. Instead of taking Chef's attention off of them, I'm a little worried this can backfire and make the cats twice as miserable, and we'll have compounded the problem instead of solving it. It's a chance we'll have to take, but my feeling - and my hope - is that the dogs will have each other and the cats will be left to themselves.
So we'll have to think this one through. We may decide to wait for the next litter but who knows when that'll be. Then again, time flies quickly and the training period for the puppy will be over before we know it.
This is a tough decision. In the meantime, I am mulling over puppygirl names !
Any suggestions ?
October 22 /07