Adventures Outside

Pete has shown very little interest in going outside so far. Sometimes he will go out through his catflap, sit on the doormat for a few minutes, and then come back in (usually after I tap the plastic to remind him he can get back in), but that’s about all. I’ve been locking the catflap at night and when I’m at work, as I haven’t felt confident he really knows his way around the stair yet.

Yesterday I carried him down to the ground floor and showed him the catflap in the back door to the back green. He wasn’t interested and came straight back upstairs. But last night as I was going to bed, he went out. I went to bed and read for a while, thinking he’d be back in soon. There was no sign of him after 15 minutes or so, so I went for a look. No sign of him when I peered through the catflap, no sign of him when I opened the door. Eventually he showed himself on the ground floor and as I went to get him, he ran back up and came in. I locked and blocked the catflap, went to bed, and had to get up ten minutes later as Pete had barged the box out of the way and was trying to break out of the catflap. So I unlocked it, not wanting him to break it, and he shot out. No sign of him 45 minutes later so I got up, put a dressing gown on, and went to look. No sign of him in the stair. Couldn’t see anything through the window into the back green as it was pitch black, but held the catflap open and I could hear the bell on his collar tinkling. Called him, and he came barrelling towards me, inside and ran upstairs and in, where he went to sleep.

I had hoped that he could learn about going into the back green and coming home again, with me there to make sure he was ok, and in the daylight, but obviously he had other plans.

I heard him go out again about 0440 and then I heard next door’s dog barking, so I went to check he was ok – he was sitting on the doormat and came in as soon as I opened the door. He is still a bit dim about using the flap to come in unless I’m there to encourage him through it.

He’s obviously feeling confident about going out now – the difference between last night and yesterday morning was drastic! I don’t want him to break the catflap, which he could because he’s a big strong boy, so I think I’ll just leave it unlocked from now on, and hope he doesn’t get lost. I’m going a put a note on the main door as well asking people to be sure they shut it, because I really don’t want him going out the front into the street. There are dogs hanging around the pub, and quite a lot of traffic for such a small street, and no way back in unless he finds his way round the back. He was straying before the shelter took him in, and I don’t want to lose him. Even after only 6 weeks, I couldn’t bear to lose him.