Struggling With Play Time

calicosrspecial

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Ahhhhh, yes. I know mine would be horrible either way so Ash is pretty good!! I know that look.................. :/ Ember did well. I loved her pics. Frost is really good, I am impressed.

Yes, true. Ember is definitely one of them but so is Frost. I think Frost is stunning too.

:/ There is usually one. :/

Awwwwwwww. You sure she isn't cute walking around with it? It is good she knows when to be tough (when needed).

Hahahaha, I never saw him as dorky. GSDs are very interesting dogs. They are serious at "their jobs". I love them.

Yes, that is good. I wonder why though...................... :/

Your mom is a softie. GSDs are very good at understanding people. :/ Ooooooooo, so close. :( Even those are really good. I can't wait to see them!!! Yes, a lot of dogs are like Stella unfortunately.

"But if it was a negative association with the box, wouldn't that including pooping too?" - Typically yes unless it has something to do with the urinary system. But if it was paws, legs, etc then one would think. It is pretty nuanced. :/

"He doesn't poop outside the box." - That is good

" There's certainly nothing obvious other than he just likes peeing on clothes and towels." - A lot of cats do since it feels like litter. Sometimes it is an ownership issue as well.

"It can be difficult in such a little place. There's really not much social distancing, so we're relying almost entirely on masks." - Yes. :(

"I'm not sure why, but it is interesting. This rat was rescued as a very tiny baby. Didn't even have fur. So he wasn't used to living outside, but still grew up to be a picky eater." - It is very interesting.

"Frost is the reason we can't have plants like we'd want to." - :/ Yes

"Ash eats bread-y foods and chews on things like cardboard or soft brush bristles, but doesn't typically eat non-food items." - That is good he is fairly limited. My girl is HORRIBLE on breads, sweets, etc. :( There was a little boy that fed her breads when she was a kitten (her mom had her litter in their backyard) before she came to me.

"I wouldn't even try beer because it smells so bad... " - Good for you!!! It tastes as bad as it smells!!! Yuck!!!

"Yes, but Bai has been around for a few years at least and they did have an ad on TV for a little bit there." - Interesting.

" I pretty much live under a rock and am usually behind the times for someone my age" - That isn't so bad at lest for some things. YOu are very wise for your age which most are not so.....................

" so when I'm familiar with something then it's usually a pretty big thing. Bai isn't a huge energy booster, so don't expect to be energetic, but it does help keep me going for school or work." - Interesting.

"Oh my. Baby raccoons? I'm sure they were cute! I'd have a hard time not feeding them if I'm behind honest." - Yep. I think someone is feeding them because they were way too tame. :/

"And a mountain lion too!" - Yep. Though that is pretty rare. But I know there are a few and some are collared to track. They go long ways.

"That would be scary with cats outside to worry about." - VERY but usually you don't see them. But they are out there somewhere. :/ I think it is the coyotes getting the cats not the mountain lions.

"If I didn't have to worry about animals then it would be cool to see." - Agreed.

" You live in a much more interesting place than me. I can understand how worrying that is with the cats to worry about though." - Well, I could do without the interesting. :/ There are Owls that are big and hawks as well. But I think those are the only real predators.

"I should thank you for the opportunity to show off my babies! " - Awwwwwwww, cool. Then two happy people!!! :)
 

Animal Freak

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I had to pretty much give up on the antlers for Ash. I found a red and white bandana and he did fine with that. Ember would be a great model except if you use food to get her attention then she comes to you to get the food. Frost was funny. At first he looked like he was planning my murder as well, but he got over it pretty quickly and was playing and acting like a dork.

Frost is definitely a pretty boy. His eyes are the easiest to work with in photography too.

Uh, yeah. I'm sure. She walks around low to the ground with her legs bent up. She sort of looks like one of those short-legged cats except somehow weirder.

You should see him run around with a leaf in his mouth. It's pretty dorky looking. Especially with him being a big, tough-looking dog. Then he goes galloping around with a leaf or a clump of dead grass in his mouth. :lol:

She has much lower standards than I do. When I say sit, I expect him to sit and stay sitting until told otherwise. She doesn't seem to think he's capable of holding a sit despite watching me put him in a sit and run around and throw toys around while he holds that sit. He doesn't really like having something on his head either, but he's a bit more willing to put his ears up than Stella.

I don't know what to think of Ash. It certainly doesn't seem like there's anything physically wrong with him. It's behavioral, but why I don't know and I don't know how to fix it. He's only peed in my room a couple of times. It's mostly the main bathroom and my mom's room and sometimes the bathroom in my room (on the mat or a pee pad if one is in there) which are the places he's found things to pee on the most. He hasn't been peeing on the litter mats lately though which he'd been getting pretty bad about that.

It would be interesting to learn more about why wild animals are so picky.

Ash can get pretty bad since he'll tear the bread bag up and has gotten into a box of cookies. He's willing to put more effort into getting the food than the other two. And of course he likes meat like chicken and turkey. We've had issues with him getting in the trash and getting a hold of bones.

Well, I don't mind living under a rock as long as I have my animals with me. It just means I'm usually not aware of things that other people seem to think is common knowledge.

Yeah, not necessarily a good thing to feed them, I know, but I can't say I completely blame whoever might be feeding them. It would be hard to just ignore them, but of course the fact that they were so visible just shows the problem with feeding them.

Yes, I wouldn't expect to see an adult mountain lion very often, let alone a baby. Pretty cool, but hopefully they keep to themselves and don't bother the cats. Coyotes seem less elusive than mountain lions, so I could see them being a bigger issue. A cat probably isn't worth the effort of being exposed to a mountain lion.

It is difficult to live where there's more wildlife. I know I'd love to live in nature and see the wildlife as we don't have very much here, but then there's the downside of predators. Might not be too big of an issue without outdoor cats, but even letting a small dog out unsupervised could be dangerous. But of course there's cars and people to worry about when you don't have wildlife! We have a fairly busy road right behind us with a lot of semi-trucks, so not safe for any outdoor animals or animals that get out.
 

calicosrspecial

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Awwwwww, at least the bandana worked. Hahahaha, yep, food will do that. Hahahaha, Frost. That is really good he was doing so well.

He is!!! Interesting on his eyes. Maybe the color of his coat?

Who walks low to the ground like that?

Oh I know, it is SO CUTE!!!! Yep, that puppiness in him.

Ahhhhh, yes. Makes sense. Nope, many don't like it. I LOVE the ears up.

It could be a few things. General stress in the house, Si coming in, maybe your mom isn't paying as much attention to him. Are there litter boxes in the bathroom? Does your mom use both or just one? And if it is a towel or clothes try to remember what human scent is on it. Just try to do some extra things with him to help him feel more secure and confident. We'll have to figure it out. The good news is, it is solvable.

AGREED!!!

Yes, I guarantee though my girl is 10x worse then Ash. :/ She will absolutely get into anything bread, etc that might be around and she opens things like cabinets and will work on it until she opens it. :( Difficult to fix.

:) Sounds pretty good to me. Most stuff people know isn't needed per se. Like who cares who wins Dancing with the Stars or something. :)

Yes, it is a challenge. :( It is hard. Especially when they are SO CUTE!!! I do feed the opossum which I know I shouldn't. :(

No, it is rare to see them. ESPECIALLY a baby. Coyotes are everywhere, a pack will walk down the street. :( And deer are everywhere.

Yes, coyotes and small dogs is not a good combination sadly. :( It is cool (and we are very close to "the city") but also not good for outdoor animals BUT it is us who went into "their" territory and not the other way really. :/ Yes, the city has issues too. Who knows, maybe it is best to have all ferals have homes (oh and world peace and no sadness etc). :/
 

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Yeah, lucky I had a bandana that would work for Christmas. Frost surprised me. I didn't think he'd do as bad as he started off being, but didn't expect him to do as well as he ended up doing.

I don't know if it's his fur color or his eye color or both, but they work out almost the opposite as Ember and Ash's. His eyes are actually a fairly pale blue, but in pictures they tend to get darker and I can easily adjust the brightness and saturation. Ember and Ash's end up very pale, almost washed out, and for some reason I can't seem to bring more color into them.

Ember in her onesie.

He can definitely be a bit of a dork. He decided he wanted to play earlier and every time I tried walking he came up behind me and shoved himself between my legs. He barely fits anymore.

Yes, a litterbox in each bathroom. Those are the covered ones. My bathroom isn't typically used because the litterbox takes up all the space. For clothes, it's pretty much always my mom's because I don't leave clothes on the floor. He did recently pee on some socks of mine that had somehow ended up in the bathroom. They must have fallen from where they were and I guess a cat batted them in there. Towels I haven't paid attention to, but I don't think it matters whose scent is on it. If it's on the floor, he'll pee on it. We've left clean towels out specifically for him to pee on when we suspected he had a UTI. He's peed on my bag of my photography set up in the past, but fortunately has only done that once because I really don't have anywhere else to put that. He's peed on toilet paper. That tissue box in my room. He's been getting weirder about what he'll pee on.

Yeah, Ash hasn't figured out cabinets and even if he did, we don't have food in there. It's all in the pantry. Frost technically has been able to open cabinets, but it takes him forever to do it and he very rarely tries. But Ash does somehow manage to get into the trash without knocking it over...

Agreed. It's all weird stuff to know. But then everyone else thinks I know weird stuff.

I know. I'd probably feed the wild animals too if I had wild animals to feed. Wouldn't want to attract any animals here since there's too many cars and people. I do wonder if one person feeding a wild animal is so bad. I kind of doubt learning to sort of trust one person means they'll suddenly trust everyone.

Yeah, it's sort of an honor to see a baby! I've only seen one coyote myself, but we know someone who lives where you can hear them fairly often at night.

Yes, there's always cons to everything. We definitely need to be able to live with wildlife since we're encroaching on their territory. It would be great if all the ferals could have homes, but unfortunately that doesn't seem to be happening any time soon.
 

Animal Freak

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Some Christmas pictures! None of Si yet. Just got them yesterday and still need to edit them.

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calicosrspecial

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WOW!!! What pictures!!!

Stella is so adorable!! Ember, well, what can i say???? ABSOLUTELY ADORABLY GORGEOUS!!! Frost really is stunningly handsome!! And this is the first time I ever saw Ash. Oh my goodness is he GORGEOUS!!! GREAT pics!!!

The bandana works well!! Hahahaha, Frost and all of them look like well behaved angels!!! It looks so easy and is so much more complex behind the pics. :)

Yes, I think it is the coat color. But Ash's and Ember's eyes look beautiful. They have great color.

Hehehehe, I mean seriously, isn't she the most adorable?????

Hahahaha, yep. The LOVE that!!! That is pretty cute!!!

Pretty much everything that would feel like litter. :/ That is very common for cats. Thank goodness not on your photography equipment. Whew.

They are smart. :/

Do you think it is weird? Then I guess I like weird stuff too!!! But I don't think you like "weird" stuff so................. I think it is cool stuff to know.

"/ Well, it isn't the best to feed wild animals. It can create a few issues. :( But I know, our hearts sometimes win over our brains. :/

Totally. It is amazing, nature. Once is enough. Hearing them can be a bit spooky but there is the howling and there are other awful sounds one can hear as well. :/

Yes. People in India and Africa live with wildlife so it can be done. Sadly, you are right, not happening anytime soon. :(

Thank you for the gorgeous pics!!! :)
 

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Yes, Stella is quite the cutie. If only she had her ears up in more of the pictures. She's always the first one I take pictures of because she's the most cooperative, so I use her to get my camera settings right. Ember is so adorable. I don't think I could get a bad picture of her. Frost was funny. My mom was playing with me during the photo shoot, so he was laying on his side going crazy trying to grab the toy. Ash is a handsome boy. Him and Frost are always a mess though. I have to brush them right before a photo shoot and they still end up with a messy ruff. And the next day Ash had a knot!

It definitely isn't easy and they certainly aren't well-behaved. Even I relearn how difficult it is every time I do a photo shoot.

Ash and Ember do have pretty eyes, but photos don't really do them justice. I wish I could get more pictures with Ember's eyes looking gold. She actually has yellow-green eyes, but the yellow doesn't come out unless there's a lot of sunlight.

Yes.

He can be a funny dog, but he can be a pain too. We tried going to a new park today, but there were a ton of people. At first, no dogs. So we decided to give it a try. And then all the dogs came. And they hung out so we couldn't go anywhere and we had to stand with Osiris facing away from them until they left which took a while. I think I am going to get a dog trainer and do one session outside, so I can get the help I need.

Plus an empty tissue box! That was weird. I've never seen him pee on something like that before. It made me worried he'd keep peeing on different things, but so far that hasn't been the case.

Indeed.

Well, perhaps not weird, but a little abnormal compared to what most people focus on. People act like I'm crazy for knowing the things I know, but I think they forget that we remember what's interesting to us.

Yeah, it's not easy to turn away from them. I know I'd have a hard time with it.

Well, seeing coyotes doesn't bother me so much when I don't have animals to worry about. It would be less enjoyable with cats to be concerned about.

Yes, it's possible, but then people have to be willing to as well. Maybe some day, but not for a while. We still have way too many cats in shelters too.

Happy to share!
 

calicosrspecial

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OH MY GOODNESS!!!! WOW!!! Si!!! GORGEOUS!!! And you got Stella and Si together. AMAZING!!! Look at how ADORABLE they are!!! Those are Chewy ads/cards/promo pics!!! SI looks so regal. Like a King!!!

Stella really is. Gorgeous dog. I thought her ears looked great in the pics. That face is SO GORGEOUS!!! Ember really is. I can see where she wouldn't take a bad picture. Really photogenic!! Frost got that into play????? COOL!!! Good job Mom!!! He is GORGEOUS and so is Ash. I know, their hair is longer and it is difficult to keep them. :/ They look perfect in the pics!! Yes, I can see where Ash (and Frost) would get knots. :( It is hard. :( Do you notice if he has any knots when he goes outside of the litter box? That could be a cause.

Hahaha, the pictures make them look like angels and so well behaved. Hollywood magic!!! The pics make it worth it though!!!

They do. Yes, it can be difficult to capture BUT I can see them that they are beautiful. They may not "pop" per se but they sure do look gorgeous. Seeing her eyes gold would be really cool. :)

:) Hehehehehe

Awwwwwww. Isn't that the way????? He is on the very good side of GS pups. I know you may not believe it but he is. His issues can be solved, he is way too smart.

:/ Yeah, they do chose interesting things. :/ Thank goodness he isn't doing it more. The empty box maybe because it was hollow? Did he try to cover it I wonder?

Yes.

Hmmmmm, I am not sure abnormal either? A LOT of people focus on really stupid and irrelevant stuff. I actually think the things you focus on have more purpose, more educational, offer more opportunity to use in the future. You are more intelligent and grounds than the vast majority of people. Hmmm, you are definitely not "crazy". You are right, we remember things that are important to us. The things you think of are very cerebral, very intellectual. It is on a different level that most people. I think you are a pretty cool person!! Really intelligent, really good hearted, focused on important things in life, etc. You are pretty darn special for any age but especially for a younger person. Ok, you are a superstar in my book!! :)

:( Yes :(

Agreed. They are actually quite beautiful. BUT as you say the repercussions. :(

Let's hope. TNR is a good start and I agree, too many in shelters and not enough good homes. :(

:) I am fortunate you like too!!!

Seriously, I LOVE those pictures!!!
 

Animal Freak

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Haha. Getting them together wasn't the hard part. Si loves Stella and Stella does what I tell her to. The hard part was keeping Si there and getting Stella to not look like she was abused. That photo shoot definitely showed me that Si need more work on his sit-stay and down-stay.

She really is a good looking little dog. Small dogs aren't really my type. Cute to look at, but I don't want to live with them. But Stella is good. Not overly fragile like a lot of small dogs. Well, I don't like using pictures with her ears down (which makes up most of them) because she looks like I'm tormenting her. I don't want people thinking I'm a terrible person for forcing them into this. Ember would be the best model if she'd just stay away from the camera. She changes positions without being told or moved, so you can get a variety, but she has to come towards me to try to get the treats. Frost was funny. Just a complete turn around. Went from crabby and plotting my death to spazzing out trying to get the toy. Ash's coat is absolutely ridiculous with the knots. Frost gets the messy, wavy looking ruff up front, but doesn't knot so easily. Ash's coat just seems to get denser and denser with time. Fortunately, it seems like the knots are mostly on the outer part of his ruff as I have not found any in his undercoat in a while. They're always just barely hanging to his ruff. Sometimes I can just tug them right off.

Pictures do make it look easier, but I only used a few of the pictures that I took. It's a little sad when you realize how many pictures are deleted...

It would be nice to figure out how to get them a bit more saturated. My photo editing software had an update and now I can't do things like I used to. It was easier for me to edit individual parts of a photo and could even add multiple layers of editing if needed. Not anymore. I think it's a little too user-friendly now. I want more pictures of her eyes gold, but it's not easy to get. I think I have maybe one or two where they're really gold and it took some editing.

He can be a really awesome dog. We had a pretty good day today. But he's just getting more and more difficult. I've been backing off on a lot of the more serious training and trying to do more fun things so we can bond, but it seems like no matter what I do he finds a way to make things difficult. And when that happens, the fact that he's better than most GSD pups doesn't really help. Just makes me question whether or not I should get a purebred GSD in the future.

I think he tried to cover it with some socks that had fallen, but it was hard to tell since they didn't stay in place.

Well, I don't think abnormal is a bad thing! But just because what I remember is more useful and educational doesn't make it normal. As you said, a lot of people remember irrelevant things, so what I remember isn't normal compared them. But way better, in my opinion. People just don't seem to understand how I remember the things I remember, but I'm sure they have their things they remember too. They seem to think that just because it's not something that would stick with them then it's not something that would stick with anyone. Haha. Well, thank you. It means a lot, especially right now. Sometimes I don't feel like I'm such a great person.

Yeah, they're neat animals, but unfortunately they do seem to cause more problems than a lot of other wild animals. Coyotes and raccoons.

Yes, hopefully one day TNR will put a dent in the feral cat population. The good news is the shelter I volunteer at is planning on starting a TNR program this coming year! They just recently hired a vet who is going to start working with their animals and also plan on doing spay/neuter for people with low incomes. Then they also want to do TNR.

I'm glad! It's a lot of work for some pictures and I don't even get paid for it! Lol.
 

calicosrspecial

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Awwwww. Hahaha, Stella, I know what you mean. Well, he is young still but you will get there. The pics looked great.

She really is!!! I am like you. :/ But Stella is RELLY ADORABLE. Oh my, I never thought that. Some dogs (and cats) just have that look. Yep, cats will do that. Hahaha, Frost. Cats........... Poor Ash, I know, it is hard. And some fur is worse than others. :(

SO true!!

:( That is too bad. But at least you have 1 or 2 pics.

Yes. He seems like it. Well, dogs are dogs and pups are pups. :/ Difficult is common. BUT he is going to be a great dog. He seems pretty great now. He may be too smart. :/ I have had those before. :/ Hahaha, you will again. ;)

Yep

Depends on the definition of abnormal. You are not abnormal. Oh, I don't know. I think being cerebral or informed etc is good. But maybe they aren't normal???? Don't assume the other person is always right and knowledgeable etc. Awwww, well, you are welcome. It is easy to tell the truth!! We all question whether we are good enough, etc. THAT is normal. But I can tell you, you are awesome!!! Don't let anyone make you think otherwise. It is always good to take any criticism etc and see if they have a point then try to improve if you can. But if it nonsense criticism etc then ignore it. We all do some things that aren't good or the best but if we acknowledge it and try to improve in the future then it is good. It is only when we do bad things and don't try or want to correct then it can be an issue. No one is perfect so we all have things to improve on. But you are an awesome person.

True. :/

Hopefully. THAT is GREAT!! I am so glad to hear that. Each person helps A LOT!!!

Oh, I know it is hard. But you make it look easy and make me happy!! Maybe some day you will get paid!!! I am telling you, some of those are commercial photos.
 

Animal Freak

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Well, it's my fault he isn't better. He certainly could be, but I hadn't done enough with him staying while I get in different positions. Every time I tried to crouch or lay down, he'd get up. We've worked on it a bit.

She's really awesome. I think her build is great and her temperament is good too. A bit overemotional, but otherwise a really good dog. Everyone loves Stella. Well, she thinks they do anyway. At least most people do. Ash's fur is getting terrible. By the time he's a senior I'm probably going to have to brush him twice a day!

Yes, I actually delete more pictures now than I used to. I was terrible about wanting to keep the okay pictures because I liked a certain aspect and was afraid I wouldn't get any better. Now I keep only the actually good ones.

He had a good day yesterday. I'm pretty tired of having to pull things out of his mouth, but he was well behaved at the park. Did well with the one dog we saw. He's started to get further away from me which makes me a tad nervous, but he's good and comes back when told. Walked nicely, listened well. He was far from perfect, but an improvement from how he's been.

Abnormal just means that it doesn't fit in with the norms. I don't think there's anything wrong with be a little abnormal. Rather, I don't want to be normal! Most people my age care about things that don't actually matter. I don't want to be like that. I just had a bit of a rough time and lack of sleep doesn't help, but I'm feeling better now. Still a bit tired though. I know I'm not perfect and could certainly improve, but some people seem to think they're perfect and it's frustrating.

Yeah, I know they've been planning this for a little while, but Covid made things harder. I'm kind of surprised they've gotten so far. Still need the cats around here neutered. Another organization said they'd do it after the pandemic ended, but that hasn't happened yet.

It would be nice to get paid for it. I could use some more practice. Really want to watch someone else with experience in pet photography, but that's not an option right now.
 

calicosrspecial

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That makes sense. I know he will do great. I wouldn't worry.

She seems like it. Well, I can see people loving her. She has that face!! :( Poor Ash, yes, that happens.

Interesting. I am sure it is hard to delete some of them.

WOW!! GREAT!!! He is really smart. Now, that can be good and a little bad too. Since they sometimes then think they know more. BUT GSs tend to listen a lot better. That is really great to hear but I am not surprised. He is going to be awesome. I love that he did well with the other dog!!!

But it depends on what the definition of "norms" is. I guess when I think of norms I think of respect, love, kindness, compassion, etc. Basically being a good, well rounded person which you are. But I guess if pop culture, etc is part of the "norms" then being "abnormal" is just a different norm. I see what you mean. It is hard being a young person (I was once a long time ago) and I think it is much harder now. BUT there are a lot of good people out there. Hahahaha, again, depends on the definition of "normal". I think you are normal and really cool. You are you which is GREAT!! Not many people have the confidence to be themselves. Being yourself is a really good thing!! I totally agree about young people. But that is part of the learning/maturation process (hopefully). You are very mature and grounded for your age which again I think is really cool!! You are great the way you are. Oh, I hope it wasn't too rough of a time. :/ But I know you can work through it. Yes, lack of sleep does not help. :( No one is perfect!!! And those who think they are have bigger issues. :/ Humility does come with age and maturity. And humility is a good trait. But please don't get frustrated with people like that, just try to understand their issues (insecurity, etc).

It is great!!! Yes, the pandemic has really put things on hold and behind. :/ Many of us that do it are also at high risk so it is really difficult. :(

Some day is you want I think you will. Yes, but you are smart and experimenting you will find your own creativity and style. Sometimes coming from a clean slate can really open up the talent and creativity. Your pics are awesome!!
 

Animal Freak

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Yeah, we'll get there. I wish I could get him into some group classes, but that's not an option for now so we'll have to keep working on things on our own.

Stella definitely doesn't understand that some people might not love her. I don't know how they couldn't either to be honest.

It is.

If we could get rid of the leash reactivity and the eating everything then I think everything else would seem a lot easier, but those two things are the biggest causes of frustration and then every other little thing just adds onto it. It all builds. He's smart, but stubborn and persistent. With Stella, you tell her no and she doesn't do that thing again. With Osiris, you tell him no and he stops, but he'll be right back at it five seconds later. He responds pretty well in the moment, but he just goes back to doing what he was doing.

I think norms are what's normal and what's normal is what's common in the general population. I don't fit that and that's fine. I don't want to fit in. I wish I had more confidence. I just don't know how to be anyone other than myself. I'm not good at faking things. I'll be fine though. Unfortunately, age doesn't seem to help everyone. Finally had a decent night of sleep though.

Well, hopefully people will be able to get back to TNR soon. I don't know if my shelter is making plans on the assumption that Covid will be pretty much gone by then or if they actually have plans to go through with it even with Covid.

It's nice seeing someone with experience do it too though. What they think of, how they go about it, etc. It's easier to try someone else's method and go from there than just trying to make it all up on your own from the start. I'm pretty limited because I don't know how to do the larger edits like taking leashes out of people and the like. Plus it's interesting to see how people go about getting the animals in place and get their attention, especially for pictures with more than one animal.
 

calicosrspecial

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Yes, hopefully soon though. Fingers crossed.

Awwww, I was just going to say the same thing you wrote. I have no idea how anyone couldn't fall in love with her!!!

:/

Yes, agreed. And it does build. :/ He is very smart, I wonder if he is almost too smart. I had a girl like that, she knew but thought she was the boss and knew more. :/ I do think Si will come around.

I think it is terrific you are who you are and who you want to be. You are confident in yourself by being the person you want to be and accepting who you are. People that conform do so because they lack confidence typically. I like that you are not a "fake". Oh yes, you are going to be just fine!! I have no doubt about that!! I think you are awesome. I wish when I was young I had a friend like you. Too many phonies typically. :/ I am so glad you had a good night sleep!! That is important.

Yes!! Hopefully the vaccine will make it easier. As long as they are safe then hopefully they can do it soon.

Yes. But greatness comes from figuring it out sometimes. But I know what you mean on some of the more technical/process stuff (like you mention). Just sometimes being guided through something stunts the creativity and the "style". I know you will be just fine and achieve what you want. I really think you are capable of some great things if you put your mind to it.
 

LivGrace

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I'm glad it is working out for you! There isn't much that's more adorable than your cats playing together.

For me, when I was trying to get my cats to play when they first met, I used a really long string. I would play with one of my cats with one side of the string until they were feeling playful and then play with the other cat with the other side. Eventually they were both playing with the same string and they were both being playful while being physically closer to each other. After doing this for a while, they would start playing with each other more and more. Both my boys LOVE feathers. I have a few of those feathery toys that I will have them chase until they are closer to each other and playing with the same feathers at the same time.

Along with what others said about treats after playtime, there may be a way for you to incorporate them into the play time as well. If you have a puzzle box or a ball with holes or something or if you could do a DIY one with a mix of toys and treats then that might be fun for them too. This might be a fun thing for Ember if she is in the room with the door shut so that would give her something to entertain herself with if you are trying to give her some alone time.
 

Animal Freak

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I'm glad it is working out for you! There isn't much that's more adorable than your cats playing together.

For me, when I was trying to get my cats to play when they first met, I used a really long string. I would play with one of my cats with one side of the string until they were feeling playful and then play with the other cat with the other side. Eventually they were both playing with the same string and they were both being playful while being physically closer to each other. After doing this for a while, they would start playing with each other more and more. Both my boys LOVE feathers. I have a few of those feathery toys that I will have them chase until they are closer to each other and playing with the same feathers at the same time.

Along with what others said about treats after playtime, there may be a way for you to incorporate them into the play time as well. If you have a puzzle box or a ball with holes or something or if you could do a DIY one with a mix of toys and treats then that might be fun for them too. This might be a fun thing for Ember if she is in the room with the door shut so that would give her something to entertain herself with if you are trying to give her some alone time.
Thanks for the tips. My cats have been living together for quite some time at this point. They don't care to share a toy, but do take turns sometimes. And yes, they do like feathers. Ash has taken to running around like mad with a feather attached to a bell in the middle of the night.
 

Animal Freak

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Yes, hopefully soon though. Fingers crossed.

Awwww, I was just going to say the same thing you wrote. I have no idea how anyone couldn't fall in love with her!!!

:/

Yes, agreed. And it does build. :/ He is very smart, I wonder if he is almost too smart. I had a girl like that, she knew but thought she was the boss and knew more. :/ I do think Si will come around.

I think it is terrific you are who you are and who you want to be. You are confident in yourself by being the person you want to be and accepting who you are. People that conform do so because they lack confidence typically. I like that you are not a "fake". Oh yes, you are going to be just fine!! I have no doubt about that!! I think you are awesome. I wish when I was young I had a friend like you. Too many phonies typically. :/ I am so glad you had a good night sleep!! That is important.

Yes!! Hopefully the vaccine will make it easier. As long as they are safe then hopefully they can do it soon.

Yes. But greatness comes from figuring it out sometimes. But I know what you mean on some of the more technical/process stuff (like you mention). Just sometimes being guided through something stunts the creativity and the "style". I know you will be just fine and achieve what you want. I really think you are capable of some great things if you put your mind to it.
I did sign up for a free online training course today. It's not the same as doing in-person classes and I'm not sure I'll learn anything new, but it's free so I figured it couldn't hurt to try.

It's a hard task to not love her. Even my little sister, who was scared of dogs, fell in love after maybe fifteen minutes of being around Stella.

Well, from what I've read it's very much a teen-dog thing (and teen-GSD in particular) to think they know better. We did have some success at the park today. Some failure too, but really not as bad as it could have been. We got sort of stuck when trying to live. First there was a little dog Si did really well with. Immediately after that dog was gone, there was a black GSD that I've seen a couple of times before. Si was noticeably more alert with that dog, but still did very well. A little bit later, there was a chocolate lab that was coming directly towards us and I had to hurry up and get more space. When Si finally noticed that dog, he did bark, but it was a higher pitched bark and I got his attention easy enough. Then he did fine. Still on edge, but no more barking. I think that dog surprised him because he didn't immediately see it. Then there was the black GSD again and when I tried to leave, the lab was coming back towards us, so I tried to hook around them so we could keep moving. Si did fine, but I was paying too much attention to him and the lab and didn't realize there was a smaller mutt coming towards us on our other side. I think Si picked up on some of my tension because the dog caught me off guard and we were way closer than I wanted to be, especially to a new dog Si hadn't seen before. He hadn't seen it yet and I tried to get away quickly, but he did notice it and started barking and lunging. That was his worst reaction, but it really could've been a lot worse and he was fine once we got far enough away. Overall, I was happy with how he did.

I could probably be more accepting of myself. I wouldn't want to be anyone other than myself, but I would like to be myself with fewer flaws. I don't conform because, frankly, I don't know how to. Instead I stick to myself and try not to draw attention, but I wish I didn't feel the need to do that either. Well, you can have a friend like me now. ;) I would very much like a friend like you. I think this conversation as gone on longer than most of my friendships.

I hope so. I'd like to get back to volunteering too. I miss it, but just can't bring myself to take any extra risks right now.

Yes, I'd like to see the process of how other pet photographers handle the more technical stuff. I'm not good with remember what does what, so I think it would be helpful to see exactly how others do it. And especially with some of the more complicated stuff. For example, apparently instead of fighting with a whole litter of puppies to get in position in a box, they took pictures of smaller groups and used editing to make it look like the whole litter was in one box at the same time. I have no idea how to do that and I have trouble focusing on articles and videos sometimes.
 

calicosrspecial

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That sounds great. Nothing to lose as you say.

Awwwwwwww. :)

Yes, sadly. :( Unfortunately mine never got out of it. She was like a puppy at 16. :/

Another black GS? WOW!!! Oh wow, so far so good with two dogs of different size. Wow, really good with the choc lab. Coming towards can be disconcerting. Was it a play bark? Well, that end encoutner wasn;t too bad. I think you are right, he was surprised, there was some stress. BUT I agree, he did REALLY WELL!! Like REALLY WELL!! I am impressed!! Was the black GS really gorgeous too?

Yes, I think you are too hard on yourself. :/ Unfairly to be honest. Intelligent people tend to be though. BUT what is amazing and great is you realize it. So the fact you are aware means you can improve it. Oh my, we all wish we had fewer flaws!!! But again, trying to improve them is key. But maybe you don't know how to conform because you already are conforming? I think I know you pretty well by now and I think you are great, "normal" (sorry, I know you may not like to hear that but you are). And conforming is definitional. You are a great person so I think that is great conforming. Being a great person. I trust you, respect you. People do all sorts of things to "conform" or fit in and they may not be the best thing. I think be yourself because you are a pretty great person. I LOVE that you don't want to be anyone else. That means you are comfortable with who you are which MOST people can't say (and that is why they feel the need to "conform"). All I know is I think you are wonderful the way you are!! Yes, I hope you do what you want. So if you want to stick to yourself that is good BUT if you want to expand that is good to. To do what you want is best. I think most people are afraid of drawing attention as we fear it might be "negative". But we don't want to hold back doing something we want for fear of that. I hope you are just yourself and do what you want to do, to not hold back. And if someone has a problem with that it is probably because THEY have the problem, not you. I already consider you to be my friend now. :) I know there are people out there that could be even better friends. But you have to give them a chance (if you want). It is hard to find true friends. There are friends and then true friends. But even "friends" can be pretty good as long as you know the limitations. I enjoy our "talks". We don't talk much about cats playing, do we? ;)

Yes, it is best to keep yourself and your mom safe for now. That is the priority.

Ahhhh, I see. Yeah, I didn't know that. I thought they somehow got them all there. Hollywood tricks. Yes, that makes sense to get some help on those things. But on seeing the "shot" use your instincts. Your pics are amazing which is a skill.
 

Animal Freak

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Yes. Also got a book on reactivity that was recommended by my boss. So far it seems like an interesting take that deals a lot with confidence and mindset outside of those "trigger" situations.

I'm hoping Si grows out of it. He's followed the GSD traits fairly well so far, so hopefully it doesn't stop with that. Of course, some breeds are particularly stubborn and difficult no matter their age. I would like to get a breed test for him some day. There's one that comes with a health test too.

I'm not sure about the bark. It wasn't as high pitched as he does with the cats, but certainly not that deep, intimidating bark when he doesn't like something. Well, it is a black GSD. I can't get very close with Si, but have gotten a closer look with Stella. I will say, the dog's fur isn't as sleek and shiny as I would've expected from a solid black GSD. Sort looked a little unkept, but good body condition. Not overweight or anything. It's posture was weird though. I had Stella off leash and called her over to me when I saw them, so we stood out of the way. The GSD saw her and watched her weirdly. He stood real tall with his ears angled back. Like some wild animal debating on whether or not Stella would make a nice snack. Well behaved though. He walks off-leash and would just run up the path and then back to his owner. Never came up to us.

Oh, definitely. But it's not just being hard on myself. Of course we all have flaws and I know that it's unrealistic to want to be perfect. But there are some things that are just genuinely hard to deal with that I'd like to fix, but it's not easy. I don't care to be an especially social person. That's just not me. But the anxiety that comes with pretty much any social experience is something I could do without. I'd like to be able to talk to people even if I don't want to! The holding back is something I have trouble with. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find many (any) true friends. I thought I did, but I was proven very wrong. Haha, no we don't talk about cats playing much anymore. It's still a bit of an issue, but to be honest I've kind of resolved myself to it. I do what I can. They got a new toy for Christmas that they like, but it's still most Ember that plays. Which is good because she needs to lose some weight.

I didn't realize how far Photoshop could get you until hearing about that. I probably would have struggled with the whole litter even if I had the skills! I tend to prefer minimizing the amount of editing I have to do, but it can be useful. I could use some help on the lighting too. You can read about it, but that's pretty boring and it helps to see it and see how people use it.
 
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