Miss Charlotte pup is now 5 months old and has graduated to being able to use the dog door while I’m at work! Hooray for minimizing puppy accidents in the house! She still pees on the pee-pads every so often in front of the back door. I decided to give her a trial run at having access to the dog door, and things have gone fairly well.
She caught on really fast and learned how to use it within a couple of days. It’s an automatic-locking dog door, so it’s not as easy to figure out as one that doesn’t lock. She’s been using Watson, the neighbors’ dog’s, dog door for a month or two already, which is a dog door that doesn’t lock. Soon she will be too big to fit through the terrier-sized door, though!
Things have gone fairly well, except where the cat is concerned. Mimi, the black cat, likes to sneak out the door after Charlotte opens it. Charlotte has a key-fob attached to her collar, so that when she gets close to the door, the fob unlocks the automatic door with a loud “click.” She was a little afraid of it for about a day, but she’s gotten used to it. The click is a signal that the door is open for her. Problem is, Mimi sits on the back stairs and waits for Charlotte to unlock the door (for her).
I hate it when Mimi goes outside. First of all, she goes out and doesn’t return for over 12 hours. Second, when she does come inside, she often fights with Steggie, the sweet black and white cat, for no good reason. I think going outside makes her extra aggressive. Third, last year when I gave her open access to the dog door, she decided she didn’t want to use her cat box anymore and started peeing and pooping in the house (on the carpet, of course). So outdoor access is pretty much shut off for her. Thankfully, Steggie doesn’t have any desire to go outside. Also thankfully, the weather has turned really hot (100 degrees), so Mimi has less desire to go outside. You can read more about how I solved the problem of the cat aggression issue here.
It is really nice to come home and not have to clean up puppy messes. But I worry that Charlotte might be barking outside while I’m gone. My neighbor, Kate, has peeked over the fence and kept an eye on her: she said Charlotte was quietly minding her own business in the backyard a few days ago.
But yesterday, when I was leaving for work, Charlotte came out the dog door and was freaking out at the back gate, watching me drive away. I had to drive around the block and drive back to the house to check on her. All was quiet when I made a slow drive-by a couple of minutes later. So hopefully, all my worrying is for naught. I might have to set up the doggie cam so that I can keep an eye on her while I’m at work. But watching the dogs while I’m working pretty much makes me just want to be at home with them. Which reminds me of this meme that I saw on social media: