Meeting Irene, take 2

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So we had our second meeting with the new trainer today. The idea was for us to follow her around and pass her at close proximity so that she would always be nearby, but without her looking at Spencer or Spencer feeling like she was coming toward him. This is supposed to make it natural for him that she be around so that she can establish direct contact.

Spencer got within a metre of her and didn’t charge! At one point, I actually think he wanted to go towards her as if to check her out. At another time, he seemed to follow her when she turned down a path.

This doesn’t sound like much of a lesson, but Spencer comes back from these sessions exhausted (see the photo of him on the homeward journey). He seems to be in sensory overload while we’re at the big park. He’s not stressed per se, just totally overstimulated. A new hypothesis we have is that he actually lived in the country before adoption. This would explain a lot of things: his stress levels in densely populated situations, his discomfort with loitering and lurking, his apparent love of horses.

So now he’s taking a nap and is likely to sleep most of tomorrow too.

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