Some cats are up for adventures alongside humans, but most are not. Cats like doing their own thing... When we got Rollo, we were hoping he could be persuaded to come along with us on some of our adventures, but we realised it might be asking too much. We just had to wait and see what he wanted to do. Since he was small, I have been working with him to try and encourage his natural self assurance, but without forcing him. Its important to be patient, gentle and respectful with cats. Its mainly been a case of introducing him to ideas, like riding in a car, or going out for a walk, and doing it regularly. We started out small, like driving SLOW circuits round the village a few times a week. Then a few weeks ago, Rollo and me seemed to decide at the same time that the joint outings had become his idea too - so I ditched the lead. He followed. Now he asks me to go out with him ALL the time. Uh oh. He sits in the studio waiting for me to get the wellington boots on, and then scampers through the garden gate to the green across the road, jumping out at me from behind bushes. His palpable joy at being out with his friend squeezes your heart. Its one of the most special things I have ever experienced. We don't do much on our walks but mooch along, cat style, varying our routes. A couple of times a week we have some ships cat training to tick off - to try and get him confident around water. All our boats are tucked up for the winter, so our local pontoon is doubling as a boat and we walk down it, feeling the waves and the movement of the water...... I have no idea if he will take to the boat, and we will take it very slowly when it happens. What I will protect above anything else is my little friend's precious trust.
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So much of global and national backdrop these last few years has been mad, scary... and getting more mad and scary still. I don't suppose its going to get better any time soon. It would be too easy