Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September Month in Review

How in the world did it get to be the end of September?  Holy heck!

This last month has flown by.  Critters are all doing just great thankfully.  The month was busy with visitors, hectic schedules and lots of critter time.

Kitties are doing great - no health issues to report and they seem pretty content and happy.  Ferrets are pretty much the same - no issues to report thank goodness and they are all active and engaged - they make me laugh.  Pup is doing well but she is having a momentary lapse of knowledge on how to behave.  Not sure what her scoop is but will be happy when this phase has passed.  Piglet is fun and challenging and adorable.  His appointment for his heart test is tomorrow - I am trying not to stress about it.

Remember those September critter goals?
1.  Teach Winston how to lay down as one of his tricks.  Stretch goal of roll over... didn't even try
2.  Continue to make progress on harness training with a goal of him letting me put it on and snap it by the end of the month. We made progress here - getting him into the harness is total drama - but once he is in there he does okay - totally forgets he has it on and does his thing.  More work to do....
3.  Continue work on potty training - its going pretty well though. - Getting there - slowly - ugh - found an ugly surprise under the dining room table today....sigh
4.  Continue working with the ferrets so we can get them used to the pig with the ultimate goal of peaceful co-existence - but I think that will take longer than 30 days.  Making progress here as well - especially with Finn.  Some days he can do multiple hours with Winston with no escalation.  Some days Finn plays downstairs and then goes back up to bed and doesn't even interface with Winston at all.  Theo - still working on that but its better I think.  Girls are pretty good at interfacing with him.
5.  Brushing the kitties 2 - 3 times a week -- the cat hair around here is crazy.  Cat hair is still crazy - and I didn't even have time to pick up a brush.  Maybe next month....

So - there you have it - September recap.  I really hope October is not quite so crazy....

Monday, September 29, 2014

Potty Party

We are making some amazing progress with Mr Piglet in the potty training department - thank goodness.  Now - let me just say - Winston is a giant baby and does not like anything besides sunny and 75 degrees outside so we can forget about potty outdoors for the most part.  He especially hates rain and stands there looking pathetic and crying - it's quite sad.

So - since he is spoiled we have focused on litter box training.  It has been going fairly well.  I get him in the box and he gets a "cookie" and then he has to stay in the box til he does his business and then he gets another cookie.  I have been repeating this process every time he wakes from sleeping, gets done playing, finishes eating - or every two hours - whichever comes first.  I have noticed yesterday and today he has started getting in there on his own and doing his business - hooray!  If I hear him in there I get him a treat and give him all kinds of praise once he finishes.

Now - don't get too excited - we still have accidents.  Yesterday I got distracted and didn't encourage a box visit after a nap and that was all she wrote.  Today he was wresting with Oliver and "forgot". Still - we are making progress - I will take it...

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Winston's New Carrier

I ordered a new carrier for Mr. Piglet and it arrived today.  He needed one because he can no longer stand up in the one we had been using - poor little dude - last trip to the vet was a bit uncomfortable. This one has room to grow and has wheels so I won't need to pick him up - which I am guessing in a few months might be a good thing.  This will also work well for the kitties and all the ferrets could easily fit in here as well...

60 Days

It's been 60 days since we lost our sweet Clooney.  I have to say that I feel like most people don't get me in this regard.  To them losing a pet is sad but somehow they get over it quickly and move on. For me - losing Clooney has been incredibly difficult.  The grief is not a weeping, in your face, feeling sad every minute of the day kind of feeling.  It's more of an emptiness, a dull, nagging ache - that feeling you have when a headache is starting but hasn't quite kicked off yet.

I miss him terribly - his sweet kisses, his sweet face, his smell... I miss our interactions and our time together - we had a special thing going.  I feel like my world is somewhat incomplete without him.  I experienced this with Isabel - she was a part of my life for a long time and she was my "first" kitty. Even years later I think of her with such fondness and sadness that she is gone.  Nigel was my sweet hedgehog boy and I miss having a hedgehog for sure.  I do think that he will be my only hedgehog though and I think of him often and miss him greatly.  With Clooney - he was my first ferret and let's be honest - I am crazy about ferrets.  My attachment to him has to do with learning everything I know about ferrets from him.  He was patient with me and generous and he was such a kind animal in showing affection and being unconditional.  Our bond was strong and its difficult to move forward.

I still have times of tears and sometimes I have a good laugh remembering his crazy antics.  I am so thankful for the documentation of his life and the pictures - the thousands of pictures.  I have captured his essence in images and words and for that I am grateful.

Time marches on and I adore my  loving little zoo.  The kitties, pup, ferret and piglet fill my heart with joy each day and I am thankful for each of them.  I try to cherish each day with them because time goes too fast and they will not always be with me.  I smile thinking of Nigel, Clooney and Isabel playing together at the rainbow bridge.

I miss you Clooney boy - more than you could ever imagine....

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The State of the Business

Look at these adorable black footed ferrets from the National Zoo
My little group of ferrets (commonly referred to as a business) are doing great!  They seem to have adjusted to the new routine we have since the piglet joined the family.

Theo is still a bit wild around the pig but its getting better.  He is less interested in Winston and it takes longer for him to get wound up and start biting than it used to.  Theo continues to be my super affectionate and ornery boy.  He is playful and active and seems to be doing just great healthwise.

Finn is really doing well when it comes to interfacing with Winston - we are up to a couple of hours at a time and in some cases Finn just losing interest and going back upstairs.  He continues to be my Dr ferret - checking out the humans and the other critters each day for ailments.  He too is active and healthy and doing just great!

Madison my kissy girl is fantastic...she is such a joyful little critter - always happy and full of sweetness and goodness.  She is a very go with the flow ferret and seems quite content with whatever comes her way.  He health seems great - she is overdue for a checkup as she was MIA when I took the ferrets in August....I need to get her scheduled soon.

Violet is doing great too - she is spending lots of time with her ferret siblings which she loves.  She is also hanging with her humans more than she used to which we love!!  Miss V is bright and active and doing just great!

Both of the girls do well with the piglet - they keep him in line by biting him on the jowls but they don't bite him hard enough to make Winston cry - just to make him stop doing what annoys them.  I wouldn't want to leave them unattended but I am much less worried about them interacting then I am with the boys.

All in all the business is doing amazingly well - for that I am so thankful!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Stories of the Day

You know - if I am being honest - there aren't that many stories of the day:

1.  Its raining here which makes the ferrets and the kitties sleepy and makes the dog hide under the bed.
2.  We seem to be doing a little bit better each day on ferret/pig interaction - it used to be seconds before escalation into biting and other bad things - now we are into minutes and here lately we are approaching hours - I am holding out hope that some day we can let them run free together with supervision and without drama.
3.  Winston's echo-cardiogram is scheduled for 10/1.  I am so nervous about this - I so don't want there to be anything wrong with my piglet.  It's so hard not to stress out about it.  If you can spare a happy, hopeful thought or prayer for my little dude I would appreciate it.  I would be thrilled if they can't find any issues when they complete the tests and that this is just a noise they hear....
4.  Speaking of piglet - he is fully recovered from his shots - no limping or lameness and lots of activity and racing through the house today.  He is feeling frisky for sure.
5.  Not sure what the pig would do if he was an outside pig - he HATES rain and cries if you make him go outside.  Thank goodness he knows the litter box is available because there was no way he was going potty outside.  Potty training is improving - 1 accident today....

All in all it was a pretty laid back and low key day today.  We are in for another rainy and cloudy day tomorrow as well - guessing it will be more of the same.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Winston's Trip to the Vet

Winston had to see the vet today for a followup and some booster shots.  I had grand plans today that I would take him using his harness.  I got him into his harness with little fuss while he was eating. Then I got the leash hooked up and we practiced - he pretty much follows me so its all good.  Then we got to the front door and little Mr. put on the brakes - he was not going outside to a place he had never been.  So into the carrier he went.

He does great in the car.  He actually wasn't all that bad at the vet - loud but for the most part good. He weighed about 11 pounds today.  Wow - he is growing so fast!  Unfortunately they were still able to hear his heart murmur today as well which means we need to dig deeper to see what is going on in there.  In the coming weeks he will be scheduled for an echo-cardiogram and chest x-rays so we can find out what the scoop is with his little heart.  We will need to know this information so we can safely put him under anesthesia for his neuter that is scheduled on the 28th of October.  I think there are 3 possible outcomes - the first - that its just a noise and there is nothing evident found in his testing.  Second - that it is something we treat with medication or third - something that has to be corrected surgically.  Option 2 or option 3 don't sound all that great to me so I am hoping its just a noise....

I will wait to hear from the vet as to when his appointment will be - we will drop him in the morning and pick him up when he is all done - not sure when that will be.  Worrying about my little guy - he has no signs of anything being wrong so fingers crossed that its just something they hear and not something that will effect him.  Love that little pig....

As for his injections - they went in and the vet was kind enough to give him a dose of meloxicam which is like Aleve I think - it should keep him from being so sore and so far it seems to be working. He is much more active this time than he was last time.  He is napping now so we shall see how he feels when he wakes up.