It was a physical struggle to get him out of the car today.
I decided Chris was not going to stay in the car when did our therapy visit on Wednesday. So, today Chris went inside and would deal with his issue.
He physically fought to remain in the car. Naturally, I had an audience when I literally yanked him out of the back seat. A woman, who I didn’t know, watched me. She had probably just dropped off someone, and they were inside the facility.
Maybe that is what I thought… I don’t recall. I hope her seeing Bernie helped.
Bernie had jumped out of the back seat and ran over to the front door. He looked back and saw me trying to get Chris. I think he also spotted the woman who was practically standing behind my back.
Although I made short work getting Chris out of the car, Bernie decided to come back and lend assistance.
Or maybe he decided to distract the woman because he went straight to her… to get petted<?>
I was trying to explain… frankly, I don’t recall what I was trying to explain…
I know I was talking.
You know how it is when you’re embarrassed. Mentally, it’s all there, but the words rarely make sense.
I put the leash on Chris, and he obediently followed me to the door. As soon as the door opened, Bernie rushed in. Chris leaped to be with him. I let go of the leash… as long as he was moving in the direction, I wanted… I was happy.
His behavior underwent an immediate change.
Chris probably thought, “What have I got myself into?”
His tail immediately went between his legs; his total posture retreated into a slinking position as he stealthy crept forward, trying to spot where Bernie had gone.
Bernie was long gone. Although the room is large, it has two distinct sections. On the right side, there are several tables. There were probably at least a dozen people scattered in that area. Somewhere between the table and chair legs and people legs was Bernie.
It was a wooden and human forest of legs as far as Chris was concerned. He could not spot Bernie. He continued to run around with his body almost pressed to the floor, his head swinging back and forth… searching.
I called him, and he immediately quit his search and ran back to me.
I led him to the other side of the room. About a dozen folks were seated in a circle, waiting to pet Chris. Some called his name; others were silent with their hands out.
Chris went to one of them and, still trembling he allowed being petted. Although we were there for an hour, Chris never completely stopped shivering.
Everyone analyzed Chris’s behavior. They knew his history of being afraid to enter this facility. Today he was under a human magnifying glass.
We believe we found out why Chris didn’t want to come inside. It probably wasn’t a person’s smell. It probably was the high-pitched sound that went off very frequently.
Chris is a nervous dog. (not really) … he’s just incredibility alert. He’s a guard dog. He alerts when certain vehicles drive up, like the UPS truck that makes deliveries to my home. He alerts when someone approaches the porch, even before they ring the porch rail bell.
Chris was probably reacting to the warning alarm. Whenever an entrance/exit door is used, an audio alarm sounds. It happens frequently.
People noticed Chris would twitch… just a bit… whenever the alarm sounded.
Could that be the reason? The sound didn’t bother Bernie. It obviously bothered Chris.
I’m not totally convinced, but here’s some background information on Chris.
I got Chris when he was a year old. He’s now five years old. The first year, he alerted at just about every sound and ran away.
As far as slinking around… that is Chris’s normal way of moving. When he is laying down, and people get close, he gets up and moves away.
It is different when people pet him. In fact, he will go up to people so he can be petted.
That’s another difference between Chris and Bernie. Bernie comes up and captures you. You pet him, and he owns you. He expects you to pet him for probably twenty-four hours.
If Chris honors you to pet him, it will only last for less than a minute. Then he walks away. I’m tempted to put a container around his neck… so people can put coins in it (like a parking meter) to keep Chris at your side.
(sounds like a great plan) <grin>
Seriously, for the rest of the hour, Chris reacted normally. When he wasn’t being petted by someone, he would assume his normal position on the floor.
His position is exactly like the Great Sphinx of Giza.
His head is erect, front paws straight out and the rest of his body flat hugging the floor.
One thing was missing. Bernie and Chris didn’t play-fight. That’s why I know it will take some time before Chris feels comfortable being in this facility.
Chris and Bernie playfight all the time.
But, today was good progress.