Sunday, July 11, 2010

Andy Makes New Friends

Andy loved my mom from the start, but he still had to deal with another person and two dogs in his transition to his new home. Andy was sort of scared of me, especially after the ‘cooky-coo’ incident when I jumped off the slide and yelled at him. He liked me though since I was loved so much by Abby and Father. Andy was also scared of Father, and Father wasn’t too keen on the new upstart who he viewed as a competitor. The fact that Andy was a male exacerbated this problem. Father never did anything as dramatic to Andy as he had to Abby when Andy was a puppy. Father was tense and snarly around Andy, but he would not attack Andy, especially when I was around. The relationship Father and Andy had would always be strained and tense throughout their lives.

Abby got along with Andy right from the start. Their relationship wasn’t a mutual one. Andy viewed Abby as his big sister or even his mother, while Abby viewed Andy as a protectorate to be shielded from me and Father whenever Andy got in trouble. All traces of puppiness were gone from Abby now that Andy was on the scene. She seemed to noticeably mature before our eyes. In a way, Abby helped to raise Andy. She nurtured him and was his guide showing him the ins-and-outs of the house.

I thought it was funny and took sadistic pleasure watching Andy roughhouse Abby. He would give my Baby Girl hell, much the same way that Abby had given Nikki and Father in her younger days. Unlike Father and much like Nikki, Abby took it in good stride. Andy would jump on her back, bite her, wrestle around with her, and Abby put up with his energetic play in good natured way. Once in a while, she would show some teeth, but it was never anything malicious.

Andy never roughhoused with me. If I tried teasing him or initiating play, either he would withdraw into a shell shutting himself off from the world, or he would find a toy to play fetch with, and then I’d be committed to throwing that toy a couple of dozen times.

When it came to swimming, Andy was a natural in the water. Within a few days after Andy arrived at our home, we put Andy on the top step in the pool. Unlike Abby, Andy didn’t bolt out of the water. Instead he sat there and watched us swim and play. As a matter of fact, Andy started swimming so fast and effortlessly that we don’t remember his “first” time swimming like we did with Abby. Abby was the one who took so much time and work to show and convince to swim. Abby did her part in teaching Andy how to swim. It was so cute the way Abby did it. While Andy was sitting on the pool ledge, Abby would slip into the water, swim in a small circle, stand on the steps and look up at Andy like “See how it’s done? Now come in.” She was so sweet how she was teaching Andy how to swim and subsequently inviting him into the water. I don’t know if it was Andy’s disposition or our efforts to teach him to swim, but no more than a month after Andy arrived here, he was able to swim and loved it.

Andy navigated around Father’s temperamental ways and stayed out of trouble with him. And with me, Andy got along with me as best he could. However he made friends easily and readily with the ones who mattered the most: my mom and Abby.

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