Stitch's visit on Wednesday with his new human friends went very well. By the end of the visit he was rolling over for belly rubs and gently nudging them if they became distracted by our conversation and stopped petting him, heaven forbid.
It's very easy to be distracted by Stitch's awesomeness, so I made sure they fully understood that he is still a work in progress, and will require a lot of patience.
His house training is very up and down right now. The week before we left for vacation he had an accident in the house every single day. This week? Only one accident. It very much depends on the weather, his mood, and how safe he feels. At night it's much more difficult to get him outside because he appears to be afraid of the dark, so we just make sure to get him outside before dusk and he will usually be fine until the morning.
We're still not really making a ton of progress on the walk front. Stitch has no interest in being near any roads or sidewalks, but will sometimes let me take him behind our house, to the grassy area. He has made some new doggy friends there since everyone's backyard faces that way, and he probably feels safer since it's more secluded.
Stitch still has days where he spends much of it hiding in the front hall, but it doesn't take much to coax him out of the hallway as long as you're willing to sit on the floor with him and rub his ears, or tell him what a good boy he is. He just needs that reassurance that he's safe, loved, and part of the family.
For a lot of people this extra baggage would sound like a lot of work, and some days it is, but this family is willing to invest the time into helping Stitch along, and most importantly, they are also willing to accept that he will never be one of those so-called normal dogs, and they will love him despite AND in spite of this.
His soon-to-be adopters have prior vacation commitments, so instead of finalizing the adoption now and then sending Stitch to doggy day care while they go away we've decided that it's in Stitch's best interest if he stays with us until they return from their vacation in mid-September, and then they will bring him home at that time. It will be less stressful for him that way and fewer changes for him to endure. He will be visiting with them again next weekend at their country (!!!) home so by the time he is adopted, he will be familiar with them.
In the meantime, Stitch's status on the Hopeful Hearts website will soon show as "adoption pending" and it will remain that way for the next several weeks while we spoil the heck out of him and prepare him for his new adventure. We've received numerous inquiries and applications (hello, Kitchener!) so I just wanted to thank everyone for their interest in Stitch and I hope you'll be doing a little happy dance with me on adoption day.