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Remy and Clover both came to live with us after we put up our Christmas Tree.  We have had 3 cats (now 2) for all of our married life.  We have always had at least one dog.  We have never had a problem with the pets and the tree until these 2 joined our family.  Clover was instantly attracted to the tree, calling it his spot from the day he moved in.  He is still a kitten, 9 months old, and he likes to play – a lot – with everything on the tree.  He even took to eating at the lights.  Why?  I have no idea but I know it wasn’t good.  So, today, I was happy to remove the tree.  I never take the tree down before the 1st and it’s often up for a week or two after. I just couldn’t stand it and I was worried he would hurt himself.  It turns out he ate right through one of the cords and I ended up tossing 4 strands of lights.  The living room looks sort of empty without all of our decorations but the dog crates fit much nicer now.  Things were tight in here for a while.  It’s a relief to have our living spaces back to normal – minus the big, empty picture window in my living room.  Clover and Remy ripped my draperies down and broke the rod running behind the tree.  I’m not sure what I should do in this front window now – maybe wood slat blinds because I don’t want to chance the curtain issue again.  I feel a big exposed in our living room at the moment.  Hopefully in the next few weeks I’ll figure something out and we can have privacy again.

Emma is really having a hard time dealing with Remy this week and I’m trying to understand her and help her work through her issues but it is challenging.  She has become territorial about her crate,her spot under my bed and food.  I am quick to correct her and she is doing slightly better but she just isn’t really herself.  She’s anxious.  We know that Emma was treated poorly by the dogs she lived with before we got her.  We have worked with her since we got her and she has been a wonderful pet.  She adapted beautifully to our home and our cats, she has always been especially gentle with anything smaller than her and it is for that reason we wanted a puppy.  We knew she would be tender with it.  We suspect she was not allowed near the food in her previous home if the other dogs were there.  When we first got her she would back away from her bowl if our cat walked by, it was so sad.  For weeks I sat next to her while she ate, very timidly, until she realized it was safe for her to eat.

When we picked Remy out he weighed less than Emma and I assumed he would be much smaller.  I didn’t get to go to the breeders to meet him.  I had talked with Steve about him but I thought we were weeks away from a decision.  I knew I wanted Remy but I didn’t expect Remy to come home so soon.  Steve bought Remy as a surprise.  Emma mostly plays with Remy but she hasn’t fully relaxed and I suspect his size is a big part of her problem.  Remy at 4 months is significantly larger than she is.

We put Cesar’s Way on hold at the library so I can hopefully gain some additional insight into how to work with Emma and help her through her anxiety.  I’ve been careful to treat them the same in hopes that will help.  Remy takes 2 crate naps a day so Emma is as well.  She never had to take naps before but she does whatever we ask without complaint and she doesn’t seem to mind.  Remy is also put in his house (crate) while we eat.  Remy is a total scavenger and though Emma never begs, she likes to lie under the table.  We decided they would both spend mealtime in their crates and that seems to be working mostly well.  Mostly because Remy whines and hates being so far away from food.  Emma runs to her house when we send her.

Remy gives Emma her space but loves to play with her when she’s in a playful mood.  I love to see them play.  We got a puppy for us and for Emma – knowing that it would be good for her to have a friend.  I just miss the way she used to be, so relaxed all the time.  I’m eager to learn more about how we can help her be the best dog she can be.

And because Remy gets more face time here than Emma, I’ll share a few of my favorite pictures of my girl from before Remy came to live with us.

We got Emma on August 15th, she loves to hang out in the yard with us but she has never liked being left outside when her people are inside.

Emma and Christian

Emma, our perfectly sweet girl, went bat-shit crazy when we put her in this crate and went out for a few hours.  I couldn’t help but laugh at the destruction she could manage from inside this crate.  It deserves a blog post of its own.  She is completely non-destructive if we leave her free in the house and she likes her new house but she sure didn’t like being locked up when we went away!

Emma loved that clean, down comforter so much I let her snuggle with it for a week – until Steve basically told me that was ridiculous.

This one of Emma in my car is a repeat but it is one of my favorite pictures of her.  She’s so pretty and has always been completely content just to be with us.

I love this picture of her craziness – she adores her rope toys – Remy’s too.  She loves to play.