Sneakers made his first steps outside before his surgery. I am teaching him about the backyard, which is enclosed with a 6 foot wood fence and gates. I have placed barriers where there are openings to prevent his going to the outside beyond our fence. The front yard is a totally different matter. I stay with him while he is outside and here my hubbie was encouraging him.
I am assuming this is the first time ever in his life of 10+ years that he has been outside and so far the weather is cooperating. So many things for him to learn about like the sudden sounds, the wind in the trees, the sunlight on the wall of the house, a falling leaf, the neighbors noises.
He did wonderfully. He examined almost every nook and cranky of the backyard, telling me about it as he walked all the way around. Of course, he headed for the gates but they were secure. I took him up to the way back wear there is some grass and he indulged himself. I showed him where the backdoor to the house is so he learns that it is the way back into the house.
We have screen doors on the front and back and slider so that acts as a barrier and control. So far neither cat has challenged the screen doors. Sneakers is learning when it is okay to go out and when it isn’t.
Sneakers has been outside maybe a total of 1 hour in the last weeks. Little baby steps are being taken. The other day he crawled under the deck but it got hot and he eventually came out.
Sneakers seemed to enjoy his adventures outside. I do not know what he is thinking but he seems to need me to be with him and rubs my leg. That is okay. We are just beginning with going outside…! In this next photo he relaxed a little but his eyes reveal that he is a little unsure of the wooshing wind!
The other problem is what to do with Ebony? Sneakers comes to me when called, he likes me and we interact very much like my other cats.
Ebony is not like that. He was being real friendly last week but this week he is again back to hiding and avoiding.
Ebony discovered that Sneakers was going outside and he cried while he was on the inside of the house while Sneakers was on the outside. Of course I had to close the screen door to keep Ebony in and this separated them and caused stress for Ebony and Sneakers seemed concerned. Their bond is very strong.
I trust Sneakers, but I don’t trust my bond with Ebony yet. Sneakers does not climb up or jump up although I know he can do it. Ebony will jump up and climb he dominates the cat gyms in our house. I know that he will do that with ease. I feel he will be an awesome cat when he goes outside but will he come to me or run from me? How do I teach a skittish cat…trust or even dependency?
Sneakers did not seem as interested in the outside yesterday once Ebony showed his unhappiness so he didn’t explore the backyard like he had been doing. Sneakers is a “take care” kitty. He takes care of Ebony. Of course, it was hot yesterday so that might have been a factor and neither one was in the mood to move…!
Next week, Sneakers gets his stitches out from his surgery. He has healed well and the incision looks so much better. It is difficult to pet him because of the stitches. I will be handling this event of putting Sneakers into the cat carrier alone…hmmm…! He is very strong.
I have come to respect this little guy with the funny name of Sneakers, he is strong, smart, gentle and brave.