New Year, New Resolutions?

Welcome to 2022!

As you would no doubt expect, it’s been a difficult time. Everything that happened in Jake’s last week or so has played over in my mind, questioning myself if I did the right thing at the right time. The grief has been palpable, tiggered by the little everyday tasks and routines, all reminding me he’s gone. I’ve had great support from friends though, lots of cards and messages to remind me how much Jake meant to other people too.

I’ve been focusing on settling Truly. Given her dementia, I didn’t and still don’t know how much she understands. She knew Jake wasn’t well as she lay next to him, watching over him. When I lost Winston my first dog, our Vet then told me that dogs have a strong sense about these things.

When I returned home from the Vet without Jake, Truly seemed relieved I was home again. It wasn’t until I took her out for a walk, that on our way home she attempted to run back down the road. As soon as she was in the house it was obvious she was searching for Jake. She did the same on the next two walks, and will still periodically sniff around where his bed was. I have given her one of Jake’s blankets, which she puts her head on to sleep from time to time.

As hard as it was to do, I removed Jake’s beds and bowls, storing them out of sight. I hoped that this would be a visual cue he wasn’t coming back.

From day one I started leaving Truly at home on her own. I knew it was important to introduce a normality as soon as possible. I started with five mins, barely enough time for her to lick her Kong! I gradually built on the time and watched her on the house camera. We’re to the point now that I’m able to go back to volunteering for a few hours, a couple of times a week. I still watch her, and can see that she eats her Kong, has some of her Licki Mat, and then goes to sleep. It’s never too late to help your Dog cope with settling alone!

New Year Resolutions

I’ve now formally enrolled on the COAPE Diploma in Animal Behaviour and I’ve been working through my mandatory book list. Some of the books were also on the list for IMDTB, so a quick read through for those. The COAPE course is for two years, and includes Cat behaviour too. From what I’ve read, I realise there’s so much I never knew about Cats. I’m not changing the name or purpose of my blog, but I will share more as I learn 😊 Particularly when it comes to Dog and Cat dynamics.

As part of my course work, I’ll be looking for behavioural cases studies at some point. But in the meantime, I continue to volunteer with Dogs Trust and support the great work they do there.

Until next time

Jen

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