Struggling With Play Time

Animal Freak

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I think we found our puppy. :loveeyes: He's a five month old black shepherd type with a white splotch on his chest. He's huge. I thought he was a bit bigger than I wanted to start with when I saw his picture, but he's even bigger than that! But he's apparently very calm and mellow. He has a more submissive personality and lived with three other large dogs on a farm, so he's used to other animals. He was so sweet if a little uninterested initially. I'm fine with that though. I want a more aloof dog that isn't running up to everyone. The foster said he's a big lap dog. He's definitely going to be big. So much for a medium sized dog. But he's absolutely beautiful and so far is seeming a little too perfect. We're supposed to meet again on Saturday to introduce him to Stella, but we're already trying to figure out how to do it sooner. We're going to have to go shopping though! I thought I'd get a small puppy and could use the stuff from the fosters or some of Stella's stuff, but nope. The kennel is too small (need to return that to the shelter anyway), the playpen is too small, collars too small....

I meant one of the cats at my work. I don't know why I said "working with" like I'm referring to a coworker. That's Tulip. I believe I've mentioned her before. She's a bully to pretty much everyone except one lady I work with who can scoop her right out of her kennel without issue. Meanwhile, I get attacked if I put a finger in her kennel. I don't think it's play with Flounder though she can be a playful cat. She tends to run from him if he goes towards her even if he isn't being aggressive(and he's usually not) and only goes after him from behind or from the side. Usually Tulip stays in the back of the clinic and Gyzmo (skittish cat) stays in the front, but Tulip does wander up front. Gyzmo normally stays in her kennel or in the receptionist area while the other two are out, so fights are fairly uncommon, but they do happen. Sometimes Tulip sits at the bottom of Gyzmo's cage (Gyzmo has a cage like the ones for ferrets or something) so Gyzmo is stuck in there.

Look at him I think. It happened mostly in the hall outside my room. Ember has kind of gotten over his noise though she still usually avoids walking past him when he does that. She'll usually stop and look at him like she doesn't know what's wrong with him.

She is adorable! That's part of the problem. She gets away with things. She can be troublesome though. It's a good thing I love her.
 

calicosrspecial

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WOW!!! Congratulations!!! I am SO ENVIOUS!!! OH my, He sounds ADORABLE!!

Ahhhhh, yes, Tulip. Well, one of my ferals sounds very much like Tulip. Runs away wanting to be chased to play and instigates to get a chase going by coming up from behind or the side. Interesting. Awwww, Gyzmo. At least fights aren't common. I am sure Gyzmo likes being out front.

Yes, that is normal. And some cats do like to test the other cats. They are happy and act normal so an incident here and there isn;t really an issue.

She sounds like it. Yep, that is true. The more adorable the more they can get away with (and they know it!!). Most cats are troublesome in some way(s). They are something. Hahahaha, yep. Love does overcome everything!!!

Keep us up on the pup. I hope you get him!!!
 

Animal Freak

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I'm so excited. Why is it only Sunday? Unfortunately, we can't get him any earlier than Saturday. He was so sweet and calm. I'm sure he was probably stressed, but he handled it so well. Very, very gentle. He's not used to being in the house with cats, but the foster does have barn cats and he's seen them plus many other animals and it seems like he'll be okay. Even if he got playful with the cats, from what I've seen and heard I don't think he'd hurt them even accidentally. My only concern at this point is his size because I didn't plan on having that big of a dog. I'm going to be going through a bit more food than I expected and I'm not sure if he'll handle agility well. Plus we're going have to move with all of these animals! We'll figure it out though. I ordered his crate, a crate mat, and an elevated bed today. We'll get everything else from PetSmart on Friday.

Tulip always seems like a confident cat on her own, but her body language changes pretty drastically around Flounder. It's not as noticeable when I'm starting to feed them because she's paying more attention to me, but they end up close together a lot then and she smacks at him quite a bit. Normally she avoids him to an extent though not always and she doesn't necessarily leave the room. Just puts space between them. Sometimes she gets kind of hunched up like she's ready to fight or flee. I feel bad for Gyzmo because she spends most of the day in her cage. Sometimes she hangs out in the reception area, but she still doesn't move much until the other two are put up. Once they're locked up, she's out a lot more (though still is nervous of the back area) and meows for attention a lot. She's actually a pretty demanding cat. But by the time the other two are put up, everyone is pretty much gone and I'm the only one there to give her any attention.

It's not really an incident "here and there" though. It's all the time. It's kind of annoying to listen to and Ember doesn't walk past him when he does that. She doesn't run, but he doesn't let her by either. And sometimes he's the one approaching her! I don't like him blocking her path. There's no reason for it.

They are all troublesome, that's for sure. Ash stole my spot. :ohwell:

I will! It's pretty much official that we'll be getting him, but we just have to introduce him to Stella before signing the papers.
 

calicosrspecial

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WOW!! COOL!!! Hopefully he does do well with the cats. You'll have to do some intro. The cats may have a tough time adjusting. :/ SO exciting!!!

Yeah, that happens. But it sounds like Flounder is ok with Tulip. And vice versa. Smacking will happen. But if that is all it is. Very mama cat type stuff it sounds. Poor Gyzmo. I mean, it sounds like she has a good life but ideally could be better. But it could be a lot worse as well. I am glad you give her attention.

But it doesn't really seem to bother them longer term? Some boys are like that. They like to "bother" to see the reaction. Like the boy that dips a girl's hair into the inkwell. :/ I hear you, it can be annoying and worrying at times. But as long as the cats don;t act differently for long after it isn't a problem (at least for now). Frost sounds like he is just being a boy.

Hahahaha, yep. But lovable!! I had a cat in my face at 3am today................. Ash, oh, Ash...............

COOL!!!! Let us know!!! I can;t wait for pics!!!
 

Animal Freak

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I can already tell this is going to be the slowest week of my life! Is it still Monday? Of course today has gone a bit quicker than yesterday since I've been busy with school work, but still. I want to do my shopping on Friday and get my puppy on Saturday! He won't be allowed in my room until Ember is comfortable with him though. The crate will be in the dining room until then. At that point I'm going to move it to my room. I'm hoping the cats won't take it too badly. The boys should be okay. Ash spends most of his time on the cat stand anyway and isn't usually too bothered about things that don't directly affection him, so as long as he's up high and the dog is on the floor I think he'll be okay. Frost won't be happy, but he's pretty chill despite his love of being a crab. I'm sure he'll be vocal, but he's never really avoided a dog before. Ember I think could go either way. She really surprised me with how well she did with the puppies, but they were much smaller. I'm hoping she still senses that he's just a puppy even if a much bigger one.

Flounder is fine with Tulip. She smacks him and he looks at her like, "What the heck is wrong with you?" He does bother Gyzmo a bit, but doesn't actually do much. Just follows her while she runs away. I normally step between them before he does anything, so I'm not actually sure if he'd go after her. Gyzmo is definitely terrified of him. Flounder is the only one who comfortably moves throughout the clinic, so no where is safe from him. But then he mostly acts like he can't figure out what's wrong with the other two and why they dislike him so much. I do give Gyzmo some attention, but admittedly not much. By that point I'm usually tired and hungry and trying to finish my work so I can leave. You can't just ignore her though. She yells at you.

No, not really. Ember was getting to the point where she was avoiding him more and acting slightly fearful, but she's mostly gotten over it. Still avoids him to an extent at times, but she also still tries to get him to play with her.
 

calicosrspecial

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Hahahaha, yep!! Well, I would do some dog/cat intro stuff. Just to be sure. Depends on the instinct of the dog. It is best to be cautious at the beginning. Eventually they will do fine with him. But it can be a bit rocky early on. And always keep an eye out for safety issues.

Yeah, that is good. Doesn't sound like he bothers Gyzmo too much. Probably curiosity. Poor Gyzmo. She probably doesn;t have to fear him that much (and if she didn't he would be better). :/ A little is better than nothing. Awwww, Gyzmo sounds adorable.

That is good. I thought she was better. That is good. Yes, that is ok she avoids him sometimes. Awesome she tries to play with him!!
 

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Cats' hunting process is mostly watching, getting the angles right, waiting for the perfect moment. The toy needs to tremble, go hide, slowly come out of hiding place as a pray would. Usually that's when my cat bothers to launch, and then the toy will try to escape by flying or "running" on the ground. You really need to try to simulate the pray. Toys that have feathers work much better in my opinion, than ones with soft toy.

I would also try to get all 3 of them to play together and eat together. Even if she is insecure, the way to fix it is to bond them via positive associations. I also have a suspicion that her being more bonded to you than any other cat might be also her way of dealing with the insecurity. She might be claiming you as a way to back her up against the other 2 cats.
 

Animal Freak

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Cats' hunting process is mostly watching, getting the angles right, waiting for the perfect moment. The toy needs to tremble, go hide, slowly come out of hiding place as a pray would. Usually that's when my cat bothers to launch, and then the toy will try to escape by flying or "running" on the ground. You really need to try to simulate the pray. Toys that have feathers work much better in my opinion, than ones with soft toy.

I would also try to get all 3 of them to play together and eat together. Even if she is insecure, the way to fix it is to bond them via positive associations. I also have a suspicion that her being more bonded to you than any other cat might be also her way of dealing with the insecurity. She might be claiming you as a way to back her up against the other 2 cats.
Thanks for the tips! My cats tend to mix up what toys and what movements they prefer, so it can be difficult to predict. The longest lasting favorite so far is Ember's favorite mouse that used to squeak and has had to be tied to a shoelace.

Unfortunately, getting them to do things together isn't so easy. They don't play together. They aren't interested in the same toys as each other. I used to feed them together, but Ember started going after Ash and they were all eating at different rates so the quickest would go eat the others' food. I would say all of my cats are bonded more to me than to each other at this point. The boys used to be very close, but not so much anymore.
 

Animal Freak

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Hahahaha, yep!! Well, I would do some dog/cat intro stuff. Just to be sure. Depends on the instinct of the dog. It is best to be cautious at the beginning. Eventually they will do fine with him. But it can be a bit rocky early on. And always keep an eye out for safety issues.

Yeah, that is good. Doesn't sound like he bothers Gyzmo too much. Probably curiosity. Poor Gyzmo. She probably doesn;t have to fear him that much (and if she didn't he would be better). :/ A little is better than nothing. Awwww, Gyzmo sounds adorable.

That is good. I thought she was better. That is good. Yes, that is ok she avoids him sometimes. Awesome she tries to play with him!!
He'll be kept on leash until I feel comfortable that he's not going to go after them. Pretty much everything else will be up to the cats. I honestly haven't gone through any proper introductions to dogs and it seems to have worked out fairly well. The cats get to pick the pace they go at, but they aren't kept separate either. Ember is really the only big concern. And Stella.

He really doesn't, but then I've never let it get to the point where he might either. I've no idea what he'd do if I didn't step between them. It would probably be better all around if Gyzmo wasn't so scared. Gyzmo is a really sweet cat. Probably the nicest, most well-behaved cat I've ever met. She can be demanding and quite vocal, but she's sweet and just wants attention. Won't turn around and attack you like Tulip either. Well, not seriously anyway. She did go a little crazy on me yesterday and would start to grab my hand, act like she was going to bite me, then stop at the last second. And she doesn't yell at me for food like Flounder.

Sometimes Frost plays with Ember. It can be hard to tell though because he makes pretty much the same noises. I have to watch Ember to see how she reacts because she somehow knows the difference. She'll usually play if he's open to it, but if he's just being a crab then she stops and looks at him.
 

calicosrspecial

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That is good. You will be able to tell if he is a threat. Yes, I keep the dog separate and let the cats have the territory.

Yeah, most cats don;t really hurt another cat unless really threatened. Even ferals have some restraint at times which astonishes me. BUT it is always best to be wise about it. Yes, if Gyzmo had more confidence she wouldn't be bullied/picked on. A confident cat is less likely to attack or be attacked. Gyzmo sounds adorable. Yeah, she was playing with you. Kinda cool. Hahahaha, Flounder. They sound like cool cats.

I am not surprised. It can be hard for the human but as you say the cats know. They are amazing how they communicate. Yep. Ember knows him. That is really cute that they play. I love to hear that.

One day closer..............oh I am envious!!!!!
 

Animal Freak

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It doesn't seem like it'll be an issue. His foster made him seem pretty chill and low drive. I'm kind of hoping he ends up a bit more energetic than she made him seem since I want to get into agility. But he'll be totally supervised around the cats until I'm positive he won't bother them.

Fortunately none of them have hurt each other. Tulip bowled Gyzmo over once and for a few seconds they were just a ball of fur, but it didn't last long and Tulip ran off right after. I guess that depends on what you think a cool cat is! Flounder is the most obnoxious cat I've ever met. He yells at me constantly. Jumps on the counters I'm cleaning so he can yell closer to my face. Tulip can be a really sweet cat, but she can also be a really mean one. She can be hard to predict too. One day we're best friends, the next day she doesn't care so much for me. The other day she managed to get the lid off a can of wet dog food. I had to get a broom to chase her off because she would've mauled me if I had gotten close to her and would've finished the whole can if I had left her. And she does not need to eat a whole can of wet dog food. I mean a big can too. Not a little 3 or 5oz can. She's fat. Like can't run kind of fat.

Yeah, I don't know why Frost became so vocal. I never know what's going on his head anymore. He gets vocal when playing with Ash too, but not as vocal as he is with Ember.

Not close enough! This week is horribly slow!
 

calicosrspecial

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That is great. Yeah, I am guessing as he feels at home and warms up he will be more spunky.

That is really good. Well, they sometimes do become a ball of fur BUT the fact they didn't hurt means there is respect there which is great. Hahahaha, I don't know, they are interesting cats to me. Pretty unique each one. Flounder sounds like my girl. :/ Oh my, Tulip. I am sure she doesn't get enough exercise. They probably have her on a diet and that is why she is like that with the food. :/

Sometimes they just do. They figure it out and start to like being vocal.

;) I KNOW!!! It is for me so I can;t imagine how it is for you!!!!
 

Animal Freak

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Well, my Chewy order came today. I don't think I need that big of a crate. Lol. This thing is huge. This puppy needs to grow some more! At least he'll have plenty of space when we do have to leave him. I'm not a fan of crating, but he won't be cramped in this thing. I got a mat for it and an elevated bed as well. Plus my mom just made him his own blanket. He's going to be a spoiled dog.

Interesting until you have to deal with them. I've walked into the clinic to Flounder sitting on the counter yelling at me. Literally the first thing I heart when I opened the door. How did he know it was me? :dunno: Tulip definitely doesn't get enough exercise. Which is sad because she's actually a playful cat. I heard a noise one time and found her playing with a cat toy they had in the cat exam room. It was a wand toy with a little ball at the end. She managed to get the toy to the floor and ran off with it. I played with her for a few minutes. Tulip is on a diet, but can't say her attitude has changed much. She used to get the same as the other two. Then she was brought down from 1/2 cup to 1/3 cup. Then it was a 1/2 cup of a weight loss food. Then it was a 1/3 cup of the weight loss food. She got a food change again too though I think it's a combination of the weight loss food and something else. Flounder is pretty fat too. I don't know why he isn't on a diet. He can run a little better than Tulip I suppose. Gyzmo is the only one at a decent weight.

This week still isn't over! I can't believe it!
 

calicosrspecial

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:yess: :hyper: Hahahaha, much better to have too big than too small. That will be very helpful. Yes, he is going to be a spoiled dog!!! Which is pretty nice!!

Hahahaha. Well, I have dealt with a few "interesting" cats. I can picture Flounder doing that. Awwwww, Tulip was playing. That is nice you play with her as much as you can. At least she is on a diet. Some cats it is very hard for them to lose weight sadly. :/ It is hard. No time, etc. But they are safe and seem well taken care of.

Hahahaha, almost there!!! I can't wait!! I am so envious................. I just love bringing in another one.
 

Animal Freak

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That was my thought process too, but this might be a bit much. I won't have to feel bad about leaving him in it though. He has plenty of room to move around, spread out, and still have Kongs, toys, etc. Plus we plan on putting a piece of cardboard on top with a blanket and then it'll make a good place for the cats. I just don't get the measurements for these crates though. This thing is tall enough for a great Dane, but probably barely long enough and a great Dane would have to almost fold himself in half to turn around in it. The width just seems so narrow compared to the other measurements.

I'll admit Flounder gets on my nerves sometimes. He's not a bad cat, but he's a persistent one and he gets under my feet sometimes. But then sometimes he disappears to hang out with on of the vet's sons and I freak out thinking he got out or something because I haven't seen him. There was once he didn't come out until I was starting to feed them. I always wash the dishes right before feeding them. They know this. They're used to that routine since before I starting working there. So they're always nearby waiting for food at that time, but that day he wasn't. It really scared me. I honestly wish I could take the time to do more for those cats, but with my own animals to take care of it's a bit difficult. I have to prioritize mine over the ones at the clinic. But if I'm getting done early or something then I do take some time for them. Tulip usually comes and hangs out with me while I eat my snack(s). She's such a lap cat when she wants to be. It's so cute because when she realizes I'm in the break room she comes running (well, as close to running as she can get anyway) to get on my lap and get petted. I do think she's lost a tiny bit of weight since being put on a diet. Her belly doesn't seem to stick out so much. She almost could have passed as pregnant before. Exercise would probably do her more good than the diet though.

We're getting there! Now I can't believe it's actually almost the weekend. I know. I wish I could bring more in. I'm still following several GSD rescues (and other rescues) on Facebook, so I get their posts about the dogs they have. I wish I could take so many of them.
 

calicosrspecial

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Hahahaha, you bought a house!!! Yes, that is good. Yes, they are a bot narrow at times but it works well typically. I think I may have the exact one you have actually. It is huge.

That is understandable.2 of my girls would drive you crazy. I think they probably would make Flounder look aloof!!! Yes, that must have been scary. I know I get worried about a cat getting out etc. It is good you have them on a routine. I know, but all you can do is your best. You have to prioritize your animals. It is nice you do take the time when you can. That really is cute that Tulip is a lap cat. I didn't expect to hear that. That is sweet. That is good the diet is working a little. Yes, exercise is good too but it is hard given the situation. Even in households it can be difficult. :/ At least they are making an effort though.

YES!!! You are going to be very busy shortly. I know. I WISH I could take in more. I am maxed out now. :( I wish I had more places and more time to take in more though. Oh my, I couldn't follow those. Everytime I see animals I tend to want them. :/ You are brave!!! I can;t wait for pics!!! Almost there!!!
 

Animal Freak

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Pretty much. I got a 54", but I think a 48" would've been fine. Who knows though. He could end up growing quite a bit more and I, personally, think people get crates that are a bit too small. I understand the need to limit space when they're puppies and you're working on house training, but as adult, if you're going to keep them in a crate, it seems like they could at least have some space to stretch out and stand up. Have some toys, Kongs, whatever.

Probably. My one issue with animals is that I can be sensitive to noise. I'm easily distracted, so if I'm, say, doing schoolwork and someone meows then it totally breaks my focus. I don't like being rushes either, if I'm being honest. Yet I somehow tolerate Ash and Ember's yowling just fine. It was terrifying when I thought Flounder got out. I thought maybe I'd left a door cracked or something and it would be my fault he got out. In reality, the vet is way more likely to leave a door open than I am. He goes in and out the door to the back storage area and leaves the door open despite the sign that says to make sure the door closes all the way. :doh: I'm usually the one shutting it. Tulip really is a very sweet cat when she chooses to be. She lets you pick her up and hold her. She tolerates being held on her back. I've seen one of the vet's sons swoop her off the ground and flop her over his shoulder. And she stays there! Just lays draped over his shoulder. The problem is she can be kind of hard to predict. I have a pretty good feel for her now, but I'm still a tad cautious and I know what she definitely will not tolerate.

I do too. I'm afraid if I get a bigger house then it'll be harder to stop myself! But I'm not sure if I'm going to put Stella through another dog or not. Sort of depends on how she takes to this one. I'm being a bit selfish putting them all through this and I don't want to stress any of them more than necessary.

We're so close now! It's funny because this week was so slow and it took so long waiting for the end. Now the end is finally here and I can't believe it! I still can't believe we're getting another dog. We went to PetSmart today. I got a couple of toys, bowls, a collar, and a leash. I didn't want to over do it since I don't him very well or what he'll like. I figure we'll get him out later and get what he likes. Stella has some toys are a bit large for her too.

My mom filled out an app on a deaf Australian shepherd puppy a little while ago. She fell in love with him and filled out the app immediately though neither of us had high hopes of being accepted. Well she just got a voicemail from them to do a phone interview! They're a little late!
 

calicosrspecial

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Yep, I have that one. I agree, it is better to have bigger, people do make the mistake of getting too small. :/ I agree with everything you write.

That makes sense. But you must do pretty well with noise most of the time. Oh I know, it is terrifying if you think you let someone's cat out. Thank goodness you didn't AND you close the door with others forget. He seems pretty good though IF something might happen BUT I wouldn't want to test it. :/ Wow, Tulip is better than I would have thought. A lot has to do with emotions, attitude of the human as well. That is funny she likes him so much.

Hahahaha, yep!!! Yes, I know. It is hard because we want to protect the existing animals but also save another one. it is a fine balance but with effort it can work. Cats are more difficult to intro to dogs than dogs are to dogs. My boy LOVES female dogs.No intro needed for him!!! My two girls are great but they LOVED dogs outside when they were ferals so...................... My oldest girl can take them or leave them. :/ You are going to do fine. Just put the effort in.

YES!!!! I can't wait to hear. Hahahaha, you are spoiling him already!!! Good for you!!!

:( Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh :( That is too bad. ASs are such cool dogs. :( That is too bad. :( I hope the dog finds a good home.

Your mom is such a softie!!!
 

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He's here, he's here! My baby is here! He's so beautiful. Intros with Stella went well. She did better than I expected. He was a bit more interested in her than I hoped, but he backs off when she tells him to. Stella is just such a crab she doesn't want him within five feet of her and she's done worse since we got home, but they're both sleeping now.

We have had some issues with the cats. All three of them were out when we came in and he immediately started barking at them. :eek2: He hasn't tried lunging or anything, but he does bark every time he sees one of them and they have since given up on coming out. Frost and Ash have both been out though and are cautious, but curious.

I haven't picked a name for him though. We're considering Ace, Onyx and/or Nyx, Noctis and/or Nox, or Osiris.

I don't have really great pictures, but I'll share what I have!

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calicosrspecial

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OH MY!!! He is GORGEOUS!!!! I can see how you fell in love right away!!!

Stella did well. I would expect him to be interested and for her to be cautious. Sleeping is a good sign.

:( Yes, that is normal for the cats. Just make sure you pay attention to them, reassure them, etc. Good that the boys came out again. Very good he hasn't lunged etc. Barking is to be expected. Try to reassure him, distract him to give them a break.

Wow, you are so creative on names!!! Very cool. Can;t go wrong with any of them!!!

Hahahaha, I think the pics are great. He is gorgeous!!! He is going to be big. Oh my, I LOVE him!!! I want to hug him!!! I had high expectations and he is even more gorgeous than I thought!!! WOW!!! You are so lucky!!! 😍
 
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