Say hello to Caesar, our newly adopted family member!!
Dustin and I went into PetSmart two weeks ago to buy cat food and ended up adopting this little cutie. The Long Island-based North Shore Animal League comes to PetSmart in Middletown every so often to showcase pets that need a loving home. This particular day I behaved out of character when I didn’t go to look at the kitties that they always have for adoption; I headed straight for the cat food aisle, picked out what we needed, and proceeded to go to the checkout aisle. Dustin and I typically go look at the kitties before we do any shopping, but I wasn’t in the mood that day. But then Dustin said, “Do you want to look at the doggies?” Aaah, my weakness. “Why? So you can tell me that we can’t bring one home until we buy a house?” I asked. He didn’t say anything but by then I was convinced to take a stroll over. Within a few seconds we spotted Caesar and fell in love. All of the other dogs were barking or sleeping or hyper, but Caesar was just sitting there calming looking out his tiny little cage. We talked to the NSAL employees and asked them his story. Apparently he was one of many shipped in from Los Angeles county California where they have shelters overflowing with animals. The “dog whisperer” Cesar Milan, got in touch with the North Shore Animal League in Long Island and convinced them to take in some of these poor animals. They said carrying around small dogs in Cali became very popular after Paris Hilton made them a fashion statement, but now they are overrun with thousands of homeless small dogs. So sad.
They said they didn’t adopt any other pets out that day. Even sadder! We mulled it over for a few minutes, called my mom to get her opinion, and decided that a 15-lb Chihuahua mix would probably be ok in a house that has four cats that are mostly bigger than him.
His shelter name was Gilligan, but he didn’t respond to it, so we renamed him Caesar.
They said he is a 2-year-old Chihuahua mix; neutered, up-to-date on all of his shots, and microchipped. But they had another vet report that says he’s 5-years-old, so we aren’t exactly sure yet!
We’re almost positive that he’s a Chiweenie, which is a Chihuahua and Dachshund mix. He has a Chihuahua face, legs, and feet with a longish Dachshund body and floppy ears like a Dachshund. We looked up pictures of Chiweenies and he looks almost identical to them. So we’re convinced that is what he is.
The reason we kept him a secret is because we’ve been going through an adjustment phase and I wanted to be able to give a happy recount of his transition into his new home. As soon as we brought him home, the kitties were freaked out when he tried to sniff them and playfully chase after them, and retreated to the basement close to their litter box. At first, they’d only come up for food and that’s it. So we looked up some tutorials and advice on acquainting them and the general consensus was to keep them separated for a few weeks, let them get used to each other’s scent and let the dog learn that the kitties are part of the “pack” and belong in the house. So far, so good. Caesar has his own room, where he sleep and spends the day sitting in the windowsill. We take him out several times a day; 4 walks outside and a few times for food and play. He spends about half of his day in his den.
Thankfully the kitties have returned to their usual household behavior going every place they usually do and behaving as if Caesar was never here. They still give Caesar the stink eye, but Caesar shies away and tries to avoid them even though the kitties (half of them) stare him down. Two of the kitties are still in retreat mode when they see him, but that’s typical behavior for them. They still come and go on every floor like they did before, which is good.
Today, we entered a new phase of transitioning: Caesar gets baby gates on his den so that he can get used to not only smelling the cats and they him, but also see him. As long as he doesn’t make any aggressive moves towards them, we’ll keep the baby gates up. If he growls or makes any naughty moves, the gates will come down and the door will be closed again until he learns that the kitties are part of our pack. For now, he’s showing signs of of submission in the short presence of the kitties. And this is good because the cats rule the house. Our goal is to get them to coexist amicably and NOT eat each other’s food! The cats have been dipping into the dog’s food, not the other way around, lol. It’s going to be a slow process, but we are showing many great signs of a peaceful habitat.
Caesar is SUCH an amazing dog! He is so well-behaved. We’ve had a few pee-pee and poopy accidents in the house, but we take the blame for that because we weren’t on schedule with his outside time. He goes on four walks a day; Dustin takes him for a 6:30am walk every day like clockwork! Then my mom walks him several hours during the day on her walks or Dustin and I bring him outside, then two more times before bed. And he’s SO GOOD when it’s time for bed! He goes right on his blanket and goes to sleep. In fact, every time he comes in from a walk outside, he goes straight to his room!! Sometimes we want to feed him first but he already runs up the stairs to his bedroom, LOL. Awww! He’s a darling. We absolutely LOVE him. And my mom, OMG, she’s crazy about him. He’s the greatest thing we have ever brought home to her, lol. She’s head over heels for this little fella.
Who wouldn’t be?! He’s so sweet and adorable!!!
He loves grass and walking. He gets so excited when it’s time to go outside. I swear he could jump to the ceiling if he was a little bigger, lol.
His stylish harness is a size small Comfy Control mesh harness which has been working out pretty well, except when he’s too excited to sit still long enough to put it on! LOL We’re working on that. Dustin spends 20-30 minutes after his morning walk training him with treats and a clicker. We’re trying to teach him his name at the moment. He still doesn’t know it, but we’ll get there.
We bought him a hot dog costume for Halloween last night, LOL. We adore him. He’s brought so much joy and fun to our lives these past two weeks, we can’t wait for him to be a free-range doggie so that he doesn’t have to spend so much time in his probation den. The past few nights, we’ve been bringing in him in our bedroom with us. We made a bed out of a bean bag chair and a blanket, and wouldn’t you know he goes right on it and stays there all night. He doesn’t get up or make a peep. Oh! That’s another thing: He rarely barks!! I have yet to hear him bark, lol. Dustin and my mom heard him bark a few times but he never ever barks, not even when other dogs in the neighborhood are barking. The other day, my mom was walking him and a little Shitzhu came running out of a house, aimed right for Caesar and started wrestling with him! Ugh. My mom had to pick Caesar up and carry him away because the other dog managed to get his harness loosened. Geez. Other than that incident, Caesar loves, loves, loves trotting all around the ‘hood. He has so much energy that he’d walk for hours and hours straight if you let him. So cute. hehe
Tomorrow, he has an appointment for a bath and nailing clipping. We’ve given him a bath at home with organic doggie shampoo (LOL!), but he deserves a little more pampering, I think. The poor little fella came all the way from California in a crate! So sad to even think about. If you’re curious, the adoption fee was $175, but we gave a little more. They have so. many. homeless. animals. Please, please, please, consider adopting one if you’re in a position to take care of one and give them a loving home! Animals make the best of friends.
My mom went over to my grandmother’s house yesterday and stopped at my Aunt Gina’s house on the way home. Look at this bountiful box of garden-fresh veggies my aunt sent home with my mom straight from her garden!!!!!
Look at these glorious grape tomatoes! To die for!
So fresh, they burst in your mouth with oodles of flavor. Thanks, Aunt G-unit, you rock!! I ate 2 cups of them last night, plus a pepper—WHOLE! I ate it like an apple. So delish. Yum!
My in-laws are supposedly coming from Ohio on Wednesday. Supposedly. If they will actually come is anybody’s guess. But we’re planning and preparing as if they ARE coming, so I have so much to do still. You never know much STUFF you have until you have to organize it.
Currently, I’m sipping on raspberry Emergen-C. My throat is feeling scratchy and I’m a little stuffy. Do not want to be sick right now!! Way too much going on. This stuff actually tastes good!! I diluted it with 2 cups of water instead of 6oz, but I dig it. Pretty tasty.
I’m rearranging our whole kitchen, so everything is upside down at the moment and I am EXHAUSTED. Cannot wait to sleep. Hoping this pre-sickness feeling subsides. Blah.
Going to say hi to Caesar now… be back later!