Today was sunny, warm and windy… the kind of day when sitting outside makes you very sleepy. If we had brought our heavy lounge chairs we would probably have taken two-hour naps outside.
I got to talk with our Casita neighbor, Jean, today. Her Casita is a 2004 Spirit Deluxe — in excellent condition. And I met her parrot, Sam. Sam is around 50 years old. He was one of the last legally wild-caught parrots before they passed laws banning the practice. She rescued him about 42 years ago from a pet shop.
Sam has liver and kidney problems, so she has to feed him liquid food through a syringe three times a day, along with his regular fruits and vegetables. Because he needs such care, she doesn’t dare leave him with anyone else, so she brings him with her in the Casita. His cage is set up on the dinette table, and Jean has plastic attached to the surrounding carpet to keep any mess off the walls.
She is building a setup where she can put him in a screened enclosure outside so he can enjoy the outdoors, too.
Jean is an amazing animal person! She calmed Sheba down just by talking to her and stroking her. Then she told me how to train Sheba not to lunge on her leash. It was so simple. All you do is give a light yank on her leash when she tugs and very firmly and calmly say no.
I tried it this afternoon. Sheba started out with her usual lunging, but within a few minutes was walking nicely on the leash. Occasionally she would forget and lunge, but a tug and a firm “no” would instantly stop her. By the time our walk ended she was doing so beautifully that she simply sat and watched two squirrels!
It was magic.
I told Ron about it, so he tried it when he took her on her walk this evening. He came back shaking his head. “Sheba was SO GOOD!”
I admit… we are the world’s dumbest dog parents. I can’t believe we couldn’t figure that out by ourselves. I am very embarrassed to admit that we didn’t.
But, it’s a miracle and it works!!!
Now… to teach Sheba not to get so exuberant and out-of-control excitable when she meets people. But after today, I am sure it will come. I’ll ask Jean how to do it! 🙂
I had my camera with me when I visited with Jean today, but didn’t feel comfortable asking for photos of her and Sam.