After staying at home with Napoleon our first week with him, we were a little nervous to leave him at home when we went back to work. I was especially nervous as Steven had a work trip to Vancouver, making me a single-dog-mommy for the week.
It was hard to head to work Monday morning, but thankfully I work nearby and can come home on my lunch breaks to visit Napoleon. As I was speed-walking home at lunch time, I wondered what was going through Napoleon’s mind his first morning alone. When I opened the door and saw him sitting on the floor looking a bit shaky, I felt pretty bad. I gave him lots of love and attention, and we went for a quick walk. When I came home that evening after work, I was pleased to find that Napoleon was busying himself with his Kongs and didn’t seem anxious about me being gone. He got better and better each day, and by Wednesday he didn’t seem bothered that I was going to work (which was a relief).
He did a fantastic job of using his puppy pads while I was at work, it was great to see that he was understanding where to do his business without any direction. He also seemed to be eating well while I was out and wasn’t making too much of a mess with his water bowl. We did have to place some heavy objects around his gate to keep it in place, as it seemed like Napoleon was pushing against the gate while we were out and moving it around. But overall, it seems like his long term confinement area set-up is working pretty well.
One of the rules Steven and I decided upon prior to getting Napoleon, was that he wouldn’t be allowed in our bed or bedroom. Steven is allergic to pet dander so we don’t want to bring Napoleon into bed and encourage that behaviour, and I agreed to this rule. Wednesday morning of my single-dog-mommy week with Napoleon, Napoleon decides to get up much earlier than usual and wake me up at 5:30AM. Not being a morning person, I was exhausted and Steven wasn’t home, so after Napoleon did his business, I decided to go back to bed – and to bring Napoleon into bed with me (oops!). IT WAS AMAZING! I had Napoleon cuddled under my arm and against my chest, and I put the blankets back over us. Both of our heads were resting on my pillow, and surprisingly, Napoleon fell back asleep as did I. It was probably one of the best cuddles of my life. I did confess to Steven about it later and kindly washed the sheets before he came back from Vancouver. Steven wasn’t upset about it, but reminded me of why we created the rule in the first place. I felt bad and told him I wouldn’t do it again. One week later, and Steven has broken his own rule and so did I once more, but how can you resist?!
I think it worked out well that Steven was away for the week as I was able to improve upon my confidence as a dog owner. Because I had never had a dog before, I found myself asking Steven for a lot of direction our first week with Napoleon – I didn’t even really know how to pick up a dog! But being on my own has taught me that I do know what I’m doing and that I can be a pack leader without having to rely on Steven. I even got to show off some training that Napoleon and I had been doing while Steven was away! Napoleon and I are both glad that he’s home now and can’t wait to post more about our family adventures!