Kitties, plastic bags, and baby gates, oh my!

I'm fairly certain that little Vito has been going through a fear period the last 2 weeks. He is 7.5 months old now and is suddenly a lot more skittish about changes in his environment.

The funniest example, to me anyway, occurred a couple evenings ago. We had just put the ferrets away and were taking down the baby gate to let the dogs outside when suddenly all the fur on Vito's back when straight up and he started his high pitch shrill barking. I think I heard a couple of growls in there too as Vito refused to move into the kitchen. At first we had no clue what was going on, and I was just about ready to believe that someone could be in the house, when we saw IT. The cat, the same cat Vito has been living with and even wrestling with for the past 5 months, was sitting on the small cat tree. It was utterly terrifying! Adam had to actually go up to Luke and pet him before Vito would even consider setting a foot in the kitchen.

Other scary things have been plastic shopping bags with a few items falling off the couch, a toaster oven that fell, baby gates he has bumped into (thankfully these ones didn't fall), certain people (especially the ones reaching towards him), and I'm sure some more examples I can't think of. Each time I make sure to work with his fear and get him ok with the scary objects. I start out just giving him treats for being in the same area, and then quickly shape Vito into doing a nose touch on the object. Once he is fine with a quick touch, I then try and move the object while rewarding Vito for not freaking out. I just hope this fear period is over soon!

Now a potentially deadly combination, kitty and a plastic bag!!!

ClassyChassy  – ( June 17, 2009 at 8:10 AM )  

Yes, here's hoping the fear factor is just a fleeting moment in time!

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