The big moment has arrived. It’s do or die at this point. On the last day for entries, I am finally ready-ish to present our hard work for your judgment.
First, I feel the need to blather.
When I first read about the Train Your Dog Month Challenge on Something Wagging This Way Comes I never intended to get The Cat involved. Sure, we’ve been working on some basic tricks, but in my mind challenges like these are for showing off. Shiva has quite an impressive roster and we’re constantly working on new things. I figured I’d just take a video of one of her more recent endeavours and call it a win. But that isn’t a real challenge, is it? So when the second post came out and Pamela suggested training with a different pet, I crossed my fingers, and turned my gaze toward the feline member of our family. I decided I was going to get Shiva and The Cat to perform a trick together.
Was it easy? Um, no. You saw my first attempt, right? The two animals are not exactly friends. But considering their relationship kicked off with The Cat trapping our newly adopted dog behind the toilet in the bathroom, they have come a long way. At best, The Cat tolerates her presence. But then, he only just started tolerating minea few years ago and I’ve known him since he was a baby. He’s pretty standoffish, our guy. Even for a cat.
Of course, Shiva adores him and wants nothing more than to sniff his butt and chase him around the house. This has done nothing to improve his opinion of canines.
Despite it all, after more than a month of consistently working to make The Cat more comfortable around the dog, I think we have pulled something fun together. He is still not cool with Shiva moving too much. When filming the video, I was worried about him getting ticked off at her and running away. Just to keep Shiva contained, I ended up luring the both of them a lot more than I normally would. For the record – and my pride – all of these tricks are on verbal or visual cues. I just chose to keep it simple to keep The Cat happy.
It’s also not the trick I originally envisioned. At the start of January I had the brilliant idea of getting The Cat to jump over the dog. Wouldn’t that have been awesome? I think I might need to teach him to actually jump first, before I get Shiva involved. Apparently this wasn’t possible within a month’s time when I also have twenty-six thousand other things I need to train. Like that handstand trick which I vowed never to speak of again.
Okay, I am finished blathering. Here is the video you have all been waiting for!
Doo doo doo doo!*
Thanks to Pamela at Something Wagging for putting this challenge together. It’s been a lot of fun and I feel like my relationship with The Cat has already improved, as has his relationship with Shiva. I like to think he now sees me as the treat lady as opposed to an inconvenient person who must be smited.**
Special thanks also to my PH for filming the video and helping me motivate the feline in question. The sacrifices he made throughout this venture have been great. I could not have done it alone.
*Trumpets. I won’t remind you again.
**Is it smited or smote? Or is there no past-tense for smite at all? I’ve never been sure.