What’s Up, Pup

in All Posts

The animals wanted a chance to say hi and tell you what they’re up to these days!


Let’s start with the newest member of the zoo family – Pippa the cat.


Pippa is adjusting nicely.  She’s a talkative, engaging cat.  She likes to cuddle in bed with Kristien and me as we read at night.  Plus, she is very food-focused and meows incessantly if I don’t feed her fast enough in the morning!  Pippa tricks us into double-feeding her a lot (and hence, the dogs get double-fed a lot now, too) because she’ll whine like she’s starving to the one human who is unaware she already had breakfast. 


I’m pretty sure she is in charge of the dogs now. Sometimes, she gives Maggie a nice firm smack out of nowhere, for no reason.  But occasionally, they cuddle up on the couch and give each other kisses.  And James teeters between looking love-struck and being frightened by her.


During the day, she’s a lurker – always hovering at the edge of the activity.  But at night, she goes wild and bats around Henry’s toys.  I hear her running laps up and down the stairs around midnight.


However, we’ve had a few bumps in the road.  We tried using a covered litter box but after a few weeks, Pippa went on litter strike.  You guys warned me that this could happen, so I wasn’t too surprised – until I couldn’t ‘fix’ the problem!  I tried everything; I switched litter brands, got her a second box, took her to the vet for a check-up.  Nothing worked!  Until… I capitulated and let her sleep in bed with us at night.  I think it had nothing to do with the box/litter and everything to do with the fact that she felt lonely in the evenings. Now that’s she’s allowed in and out of our room, there have been no more pees.


We sleep like this:


It’s crowded in our queen-sized bed.


Henry likes Pippa, too.  He has figured out how to make her play and spends a lot of time waving her birdie around.




Okay… next pet.  James is doing well.  He just had his 7th birthday!  He likes staring at Pippa, as I mentioned, but otherwise, not much has changed in his world.  He’s still not super into the idea of a baby and tends to get up and scoot away if Henry comes too close.  I’m hoping they will bond eventually… we’re practicing ‘gentle hands’ with Henry; that should help.


He spends almost all day in that chair… unless he’s going on a walk, which is definitely his favorite activity.  I started doing a ‘star chart’ for myself again – it’s taped on the fridge.  I try to give myself (or the Husband) two stars a day for two James walks.  It’s a corny trick, but it definitely works.


And Maggie…. well, Maggie is Maggie, but that’s no surprise, right?  She’s still silly. Her world revolves around food, which means she’s extra-happy that Henry is eating solids (and tossing bits over the edge of the high chair).  I still have to drag her out of the house for even the shortest of walks – that dog would really be perfectly okay to sit on the couch all day.  She’s best friends with Henry and loves all the extra attention he gives her.


Having so many pets plus a baby does feel like a lot (you should see how they ALL follow me from room to room… like a herd) but I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Our dogs have been with us for almost six years, and they hold a special place in my heart.  And Pippa is definitely earning her spot, too – she’s such a sweetie.  Henry loves to interact with the animals, and I feel like owning pets will really enrich his childhood. 


My favorite part of the day is definitely the morning.  I wake up and tend to everyone’s needs.  Everyone gets cuddled, let out or changed or scooped, and eats their breakfast.  It’s a very nice morning routine, and it’s a comfort to me to go through the motions of taking care of the babies, furry or not.  



  • Joy February 16, 2013, 9:54 am

    Oh my goodness…that picture you drew of how you sleep at night is hilarious. It makes me feel better knowing someone else has animals that take over the bed. My two cats start out all curled up between me and my husband but a few hours later they are all stretched out and my husband and I are all curled up trying to find space that isn’t occupied by cats.

    I think life is more precious with animals around.

    • Caitlin February 16, 2013, 9:54 am

      me too 🙂

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats February 16, 2013, 10:00 am

    Awww I love that Henry plays with Pippa! That’s too cute! I definitely think having pets as a kid is great. My parents got a golden retriever shortly before my older brother was born (she was about 3 when I was born) and we got another dog when I was about 8. I absolutely loved having dogs around the house

  • Jenn February 16, 2013, 10:07 am

    Love these photos. Henry is the cutest!

  • Abby February 16, 2013, 10:14 am

    Love this post! I feel the same way you do about babies, pets, and taking care of everybody! In this household there’s two human babies and one big dog. I want to try your sticker chart for walking the dog. Have a great day!

  • Robin February 16, 2013, 10:17 am

    I highly suggest investing in an automatic cat feed for pippa. It will be the best $50 you ever spent. Our cat was the same way and it just got worse every day. She started waking us earlier and earlier and getting over weight due to tricking us both into feeding her.

    Another nice thing is that we can now leaver her for a few days with out a pet sitter and she is just fine


  • Tara February 16, 2013, 10:28 am

    Aw, I never grew up with animals and always wishes I had a Shiba Inu when I was younger. However, I know how much hard work they are, so maybe it’s best that my parents waited ’til I’m old enough to make a decision myself!

  • Pam February 16, 2013, 10:38 am

    Love this post! Those pictures of Henry with the cat wand are too precious. I have a pug who follows me everywhere I go, and although it drives me crazy sometimes, I love her so very much, and she really brings a lot of joy to our household.

    Also, I always had pets growing up and really do think they enrich your childhood.

  • Krista @ Healthy Berg February 16, 2013, 10:53 am

    I love this post! Your fur babies are so cute.

  • Michelle February 16, 2013, 10:59 am

    Ha, your sleeping arrangement looks just like ours! We even had a discussion about getting a king size bed just so there is more room with the animals. Totally logical.

    • Nenelle February 18, 2013, 5:59 pm

      I have a king sized bed with two small dogs and there is still no room for us humans!

  • Caitlin February 16, 2013, 11:53 am

    I was hoping for a post like this soon!! I love all animals, but I’m definitely more of a cat person and Pippa is absolutely beautiful!! I’m glad the litter box issue was pretty easy to work out- I’ve never had issues with my 2 cats, but I’ve heard it can be a nightmare! Your bunch are too cute!

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed February 16, 2013, 11:58 am

    We said no dog in the bed… and then it was just cuddles once in a while… and now she’s been jumping in whenever she feels like it! We are suckers for doggie cuddles 😀

  • Laura February 16, 2013, 11:59 am

    Haha, that drawing of how you sleep is hilarious. That’s what happened to my parents, except it was two cats and one dog, and they ended up buying a king bed because of it. 🙂

  • Laura February 16, 2013, 12:03 pm

    Judging by the picture, Kristien might need to see a Chiropractor :). j/k, it’s a very cute set-up, and I love the update on baby-pet relations. So glad Henry has wormed his way into (most of) their hearts!

  • Beth @ Running with the Sunrise February 16, 2013, 12:19 pm

    I love the pet photos! Pippa is so cute with her little half mustache. Your bed looks like mine when we have both dogs (one 75 lb shepherd mix, one 35 lb Sheltie) in our bed. I think eventually we might have to upsize to a king. Luckily, the dogs get too hot to want to spend the whole night in bed. Have a great weekend!

  • Marissa @Barefoot Colorado February 16, 2013, 12:20 pm

    My dog Tucker can TOTALLY relate to Maggie. He loves food and to be lazy. Playing fetch deserves a 6 hour nap–right? But, Tucker has an identity disorder. He think’s he’s a cat most of the time. No joke, he licks his paws and cleans himself, and even tries to pounce on his toys. I think he needs doggy therapy 😉 haha!

  • Socal Rachel February 16, 2013, 12:28 pm

    Pippa…so cute. More cat info…mine doesn’t use the box when I’m not home overnight because he is upset there is no warm body to sleep with. Also location could be a problem. Mine also refused to use the litter box in the laundry room because the washer got off balance once. Moved it to the bathroom and the problem was fixed. Hope your box problems are all solved for good.

  • Cassie February 16, 2013, 12:52 pm

    Aw, I’m glad Pippa is settling in nicely!! If you ever want a painting (acrylic on canvas) of the three of them to decorate your already-lovely home, I would love to do one for you guys since I have read so much about them, I feel like I know them and their quirks! 🙂

  • Kris February 16, 2013, 12:57 pm

    Aw, what a sweeet post to hear how the pets are and how they interact with Henry. Having pets as a child definitely made me the animal lover I am today. We still don’t let our IG sleep in bed because he’s a space hog and has to be under the covers, but we do let him get in bed and cuddle in the morning.

  • Jennifer February 16, 2013, 1:34 pm

    I thought you were getting the dogs out of the bed before Henry was born?

    • Caitlin February 16, 2013, 6:00 pm

      I tried 🙁

  • Emily February 16, 2013, 1:40 pm

    Henry sitting upright on the floor in his onesie playing with Pippa is about all the cuteness I can handle! So precious!

  • Emily February 16, 2013, 1:52 pm

    our cats protest if they are not allowed in bed with us too, but my husband sleeps like a hurricane so they usually wait until he’s up for the day to steal his warm sleeping spot. They have their own little tower in our bedroom that they sleep in during the night, so they can be close to us without crowding the bed too much.

  • Sarah (The Simple Dietitian) February 16, 2013, 2:27 pm

    I love the morning too! I have no kids and one cat (a silly tuxedo named Mr. Humphrey Bogart…we call him Humphrey.) Every morning, he wakes me up with his gentle meows and head butts and then waits for me to feed him. I love the routine and I love having a fur baby in my life. They’re such a treasure.

    Loved reading about all of your fur babies!! They’re just the cutest. 😀

  • Ann @ Turbo Teacher February 16, 2013, 3:31 pm

    Aww, I love this post. Animals make me smile!! 😉

  • Kristin February 16, 2013, 5:28 pm

    Your sleeping diagram is hilarious!!! how has the barking been?

    • Caitlin February 16, 2013, 5:59 pm

      meh – its okay. she’s definitely better but she will totally bark over that thing.

  • Babs February 16, 2013, 5:51 pm

    I love the animal update. I am pup obsessed, and at the moment I have to settle for my in-laws pugaliers. We live in an apartment and the landlord won’t allow a dog, even a small one. But one day I will be a pup owner 😉

  • Cindy February 16, 2013, 6:31 pm

    Pippa is adorable as is your picture of your sleeping arrangement. 🙂

  • Micaela February 16, 2013, 6:33 pm

    You may have already covered this, but how is Maggie’s barking going? Was it resolved by the cutronella collar?

    • Micaela February 16, 2013, 6:33 pm

      Oops citronella!

  • Amber K February 16, 2013, 8:49 pm

    I can not imagine getting any sleep like that. My husband and I have a king size bed all to ourselves and sometimes that feels too small, lol.

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More February 16, 2013, 8:49 pm

    I love how Henry has all those little furry friends to play with! And I think it sounds like you guys are on the hunt for a KING sized bed soon… 😉

  • Paige @ Your Trainer Paige February 16, 2013, 9:36 pm

    The only one time Clarabelle started pissing outside her litterbox it was an emotional issue. All of the tests at the vet came back just fine, and the vet said she was mildly depressed!
    Turns out, she hated her soft paws (I didn’t want to declaw.) So now she’s happy, goes in the litterbox, and we have torn up carpet. lol

  • Kelly February 16, 2013, 11:07 pm

    Too cute. We just had a baby (he’ll be 1 month tomorrow) and have 2 dogs too… and Madison (who will be 9 this year) wants nothing to do with Caleb. She leaves the room when he starts crying. And Bailey is facinated by the baby… I think they’ll be best friends when he gets older. 🙂

  • Ashley February 16, 2013, 11:26 pm

    I LOVED this post!! so glad to hear how the doggies and new ‘lil pippa is doing! 🙂 One of my fav. things about your blog is the pet photos, esp. them playing with le bebe… super adorable! 🙂

  • Robin February 17, 2013, 5:12 am

    I agree with you. It’s a bit of work to have pets (we have four) and a little guy around the house. And you have to release your standards somewhat, but the rewards are worth it.

  • helene @healthyfrenchie February 17, 2013, 11:28 am

    I love it when you post about “the zoo” and those pics of Henry are too cute.
    I’m always interested because we only have a fur baby at the moment but I’m hoping to get a human one in a year or so…
    And my biggest hope is that Freddie will get on with bebe!
    We spent some time with a 20 month old last week-end and Freddie was letting him pet him and giving him kisses. My heart melted!
    And like Maggie he loves food so I can imagine him hovering around the high chair lol

  • Haley @ fullnfit February 17, 2013, 12:55 pm

    Your drawing is hilarious… it made my morning 🙂

  • Sarah February 17, 2013, 7:18 pm

    Love the furry friends but really love the chair!! Where did you get it?

    • Caitlin February 17, 2013, 7:34 pm

      West elm!

  • Reenie February 17, 2013, 10:03 pm

    OMG… that drawing of you and the pets in bed cracked me up!! Who would have ever thought it’d be Maggie coming around to Henry, before James. Too cute! And Pippa… could she be any cuter. Maybe she’s watching (lurking) during the day to see how Henry plays with his toys ~ then she does it at night. HA!! =)

    My Lucy (cat) sleeps on the pillow with me ~ and she’s a pillow hog. She has to be face-to-face. If I turn over to the other side, she’ll jump or crawl over my head to get to the other side. HA! Ahhhh ~ what we do for our furrrrr-babies <3

  • Cassandra F. February 17, 2013, 11:23 pm

    My sis and I loved having a dog (Lhasa Apso!) and had the sweetest dog in the world, Xochi, who was paralyzed from the middle of the spine down. She was our little “seal dog” who gallavanted around the house, sliding like crazy across the hardwood floors (who says you need four legs to have any fun, right?) She ended up developing complications about a year after her accident and we had to put her down, and then we adopted our kids and life was just too hard to introduce another pet. We still have the little “oops, need to go home and take care of the puppy!” alarm in the back of our heads. LOL Right now we’re reveling in the ability to move at our leisure, and stay out as long as we like, but I do miss my sweetheart Xochi. She would have loved, loved, loved the kids.

  • dotsie February 18, 2013, 8:03 am

    one of the best posts ever 🙂

  • jennifer February 18, 2013, 9:05 am

    love this post! pippa is gorg 🙂

  • Jen February 18, 2013, 9:28 pm

    I’m glad to hear my husband and I aren’t the only people with a grey cat who loves to run up and down the stairs at night then come sleep on my pillow.

  • Lele February 18, 2013, 9:59 pm

    I just laughed through this whole post. Animals are the best. Particularly, “”James teeters between looking love-struck and being frightened by her.”

  • Sara February 19, 2013, 8:42 am

    Our two large dogs (70 pounds each) sleep in our queen bed with us most of the night and we have three cats who run around downstairs in the middle of the night. (The dogs don’t let them upstairs.) I can’t wait to see how our pets adjust when we bring home a baby in May! Should be interesting!

Previous post:

Next post:

Healthy Tipping Point