For the past few days, Lion hasn’t been feeling well. He’s had doctor appointments while I am at work so it was necessary for me to uncage him. This is the longest he’s been a wild Lion since his caging.
I’m not worried about him being naughty. He doesn’t feel well. I’m also not worried about him deciding he no longer wants to be caged. I don’t think he’s worried that I no longer want him to be caged. We both understand that this break is not something we want, but something that is necessary. When I agreed to cage Lion we never discussed under what circumstances he would be uncaged. We never even discussed how often he would be uncaged for cleaning. I think the most important tool we have is common sense.
This is a fluid situation. The rules I’ve established for Lion have to be set aside under some circumstances. His surliness from a week ago is nothing compared to when he’s sick. He admits he’s an impatient patient. I would never punish him when he’s not feeling well. I will also release him from his responsibility of making breakfast this weekend. I may enjoy his discomfort when we’re playing, but obviously this is different. My biggest responsibility as a keyholder is keeping my Lion safe and healthy.
Update: Last night (Thursday) Lion asked to be recaged. I was willing to wait until he was feeling all better but he said since he doesn’t even notice the cage it certainly won’t add to his discomfort and he doesn’t have another doctor’s appointment for a few days. It may be a while before he is ready to resume normal activities but he is my caged Lion again.