This morning, I read one of Megan Mayhew Bergman’s blog posts – the one about “…the domestic mode of families …”; her curiosity about the the different kinds of ‘family chaos.’ It seemed to be a good take off point for what’s been going on in my house for the past two weeks.
Our own brand of unique family chaos. Which, in one way or another, is always linked to the animals.
We are two weeks into transitioning Onyx into our home – and, we’re almost at the point where he can roam freely, to his heart’s content, upstairs and downstairs, except for the attic and basement.
At first, there was what I like to call the grand shuffle as we kept stairway doors closed or had Tessa on leash with Onyx slowly given the upstairs to explore. The first introductions were: Onyx meets Mack (cat to cat), Onyx meets Josephine (cat to dog); Onyx meets Tessa (cat to dog) and Onyx meets Jasper (less than 10 pound kitten meets 160 pound Great Dane).
What made all of this work was my knowing that my dogs like cats; and that I carefully orchestrated all of the introductions so that if Onyx always felt safe, we’d end up with a “…and they all lived happily ever after” story.
I did wonder at first, if I could pull this off because Onyx was really terrified of the dogs – his initial reaction to seeing them was to go on the offensive. He was never restrained; the dogs, sensitive to voice commands, answered to me first, even when what they really wanted to do was go nose-to-nose with Onyx.
Because we went slowly, Onyx was never out of his depth. Never felt threatened (well, there was the very first time he saw Jasper looming over him when my husband opened the bathroom door on day two of having Onyx).
Because we went slowly, Onyx was gradually introduced to our house: room by room, floor by floor. He’s a confident, still tiny, playful kitten able to leap tall buildings in a single bound: a feline superman.
Now, the fun can truly begin – watching Mack, Tessa, Jasper and Josephine develop relationships with Onyx and with us, their human companions. [gplus count="true" size="Medium" ]