Who Knew Toy Fox Terriers and African Gray Parrots Could Be Friends?
On Gracie’s initial visits, we guarded her diligently. Barkleah spent every waking moment shadowing her. He perched on the back of the sofa as his coal black eyes glared intently. When she attempted flight, often misjudging her landing, she sought refuge on our wooden mini blinds. His first instinct was to jump off the couch, race to the window, and stare up as if he might catch her when she fell.
Our instincts caused us to panic. She was so fragile, so young, and a novice at flying. Often we all ran to the window at once. Our son Jeff took the lead. He shouted, “Barkleah, no.” Then he offered the back of his hand and invited Gracie to “Step up, baby.” Relieved to be rescued from the blinds, Gracie obliged Jeff and he returned her to her cage or perch.
In the mean time, Bill and I were chasing Barkleah around the room, attempting to pick him up, and move him from the area. He, of course, loved this game and allowed us to chase him from room to room with a smile on his face.
We had no idea if Barkleah would chase Gracie, but that was his normal action when seeing a bird in our back yard. We could take no chances with little Gracie’s life.
Gracie, fascinated by this ten pound Toy Fox Terrier, first words were “Barkleah, doggie. Grrr. Arf. Arf. Arf.” She also realized that Barkleah loved to eat. Gracie quickly learned to push her food off onto the floor when she was full. She alerted him with her special signal, by calling out, “Don’t dump your food bowl.” Then she would shoved the bowl off her cage and onto the floor. Her next comment was , “Gracie is a stinker.”.
Barkleah appears to love bird food. he has gained two pounds since Gracie joined the family. It appears that Gracie likes her role as diet breaker. These two have run us ragged. Do you think they are communicating with mentally? l