When we arrived to Una’s new home, we went straight for a small walk, to let Una take care of her toilet business. She was looking around and listening to noises (there are construction sites all around, since this is a new area). A bit worried about some noises, but could handle it. When we got in to a little path in the forest, she relaxed a bit and started to sniff around for dog-mail along the path. I had some extra-good treats with me and rewarded her whenever she looked at me. Bribing with food to make a good impression of myself 😉 Well, that was planned: I knew that she would be worried and missing Anna. The plan was: the sooner Una starts to pay attention to me, in a positive way, the sooner she will start to feel safe with me. When walking with Una, it looked like her feet hurt when she walked on gravel (on bike-paths). So, I walked her on the grass on the park, on our way to the forest. And that was easier on her. On the wet, soft forest path she did not have any problems.
At home, we stayed in my bedroom together. I had installed a gate at my bedroom door, to keep Una and my cats separate at first. Behind the gate, the cats moved from the initial angry looks and some hair-rising to calmly keeping an eye on Una, just in case. Una totally ignored the cats, which helped a lot in achieving this so quickly! So, things would undoubtedly go very well between Una, Luna and Luka – a big relief 🙂
At first Una was restless, of course, and wouldn’t eat her kibble. I put some of the tasty treats in her food, and she ate it straight away. I sat next to her bed to read a newspaper on the floor, and after a while, Una fell asleep on her bed. I was so happy to see the sweet, exhausted girl getting a rest at last!
Afert her nap, Una seemed a bit restless, so I decided to try to distract her by giving her a big bone. It has some meat attached, and Una started to gnawed the meat off the bone so greedily that she did not see or hear anything else: what a treasure! And my trick worked: she was much calmer after the 10 minutes she gnawed the bone. Apart from taking her mind off loosing Anna, eating/knawing released pleasure-hormones that also helped to relax her. I had put an Adaptil collar on her (releasing DAP-pheromone), and hoped that would help her to feel safe. When I wrote the email (source for the text in this post) to Anna, Una was sleeping beside me on her bed. I was sitting on the floor, and she was pressed as close to me as she could 🙂 I was glad I could already bring some comfort for her! And since I had a 4-week holiday, starting when Una came, I had a lot of time to get Una well settled before she needed to stay at home during my work hours.
Thank you so much for this wonderful friend you have given me, Anna!!!