It's interesting - relationships with the critters are very similar to human relationship in that they ebb and flow and there are times when you are closer and times when you are further apart.
There are days when they all drive me a little bit whacky - sometimes more than one on the same day which makes for a grumpy human. I adore them - and I am so fortunate to have them no matter how nutty I get!
When Winston was a baby it took what felt like forever for the two of us to bond. I have said it before and I will say it again - pigs are hard - rewarding - fun - but hard. I would say it took us a good four or five months to get in a groove. Now, at almost 1.5 years old - he and I are in a really good place. He has his routine, his own space, lots of outside freedoms - its pretty much all good. He has some behavioral issues - don't get me wrong. I would prefer he not nibble on the drywall when he gets mad and biting the guests is not my favorite thing he does - we are working on both....
Emma has always been a daddy's dog. Those two have a special thing going. She and I are together non stop though so we have our moments. Since she has much more outdoor time she is much more mellow than she used to be. Other than her need to stand right in front of me when I am trying to get something done (oh if I had a nickel for every time I tell her to move) and her occasional carpet scratching episode things are great for us.
The kitties - I have 3 incredibly independent girls who like attention if I happen to be around. They are of the mind that so long as I scoop the box and put food and water in the bowl anything above and beyond that is bonus. They enjoy the time we spend together each day - I play with them, give them loves, brush them on occasion and give them their canned food and meds in the mornings and the evenings. Then there is Oliver - my little Klingon. I love that cat to the moon and back but he is so in your face, constantly meowing, can't be petted without biting or licking - ugh - it makes me a tiny bit nutty. I try to let him out to explore a few times a week. I carry him around with me while I do chores, nothing seems to satisfy him. It does get a bit frustrating some days. It seems like in these ebbs and flows you have to find your way to a new normal - we will get there I am sure. No matter how crazy they make me I wouldn't trade a second of time with them for anything.
The ferrets - my interactions with them are ever changing as well. Used to be that Kai was my wild child who never wanted to be picked up and loved on - now he wants to be carried around and he gives you a face full of kisses every time he sees you. Bash wants to be loved on but not for too long. Theo used to love to be held, now he wants down fairly quickly. Tabby used to be fairly aloof - now she wants to climb on you and play - but only on her own terms. Violet has always been incredibly independent - over the years she has come to appreciate being loved on but she doesn't really actively seek it out. Fiona is super mellow, happy to be carried around and loved on - not a wiggly ferret at all. And last - my Maddie - moo. She is probably the most consistent of the bunch - a joyful girl who loves to get loved on and who gives sweet kisses every time she sees you.
At the end of the day - I am so lucky to have these little ones - regardless of the kind of engagement. I look forward to seeing how things change with them over time..