I visited Carol late yesterday and learned that she could get herself out of bed and into a chair without any assistance! Perhaps in 2-3 days, she might even be able to walk unaided? She also had a surprise yesterday!
One of Carol’s friends, from where she used to work, has a certified therapy dog (Golden Retriever)! Arrangements were made and a visit was planned. It was clearly the highlight of her day! Ray, sadly, is not allowed in there but, knowing Ray, that is probably just as well!
He surprised me the other night in that as I was going through the “lights off” routine before going to bed, he disappeared. I didn’t think too much of it because he has a number of places where he sleeps, and would appear to be choosing them randomly. As I turned off the last night and went into my bedroom, there he was on my bed! He has never done this before. He had kindly left me sufficient room to get in, which I did and promptly went to sleep. When I woke up, he had gone!
The poor guy probably found out why I have my own bed. I am a very “mobile” sleeper and could well have rolled over onto him, or kicked him, during the night! He has settled down for the night in one of his usual places ever since that experience!
Because I am generally in bed before Carol, she has established Ray’s final routines for the day. She leashes him up (in case of skunk, rabid raccoon etc) and takes him into the garden to pee. After that they both come back inside; she removes his collar, and he gets a final biscuit, and then settles down.
I was well aware of the routine but had not seen it “in action”. It was around 10:30pm when I leashed him and opened the back door. He trotted out and down the steps and lead me to one of his “pee spots” where he emptied himself. Without waiting for any sound or movement from me, he then trotted back and into the house with me a few feet behind him.
I unclipped his leash, closed and locked the back door, and noticed Ray was just standing still with his head down and looking at the floor. I wasn’t quite sure what was on his mind, but I knew that his collar had to come off so I started to pull it over his head… and all became clear. He knew that it came off so much easier if he had his head down! After that he went into his den and lay down in his usual front paws crossed position. Clearly this was his last biscuit of the day routine, so I obliged him!
I am constantly amazed at how cooperative Ray can be, and all it seemed to take was positive reinforcement training; respecting that he has opinions on things just as we do, and lots of TLC. It’s really not complicated.