Unfortunately, John, Kelso has only repeated that little squeal one or two more times. I wish he would do it more, it is so cute.
I do have a report to make, though. Kelso has started to show affection to me! This is amazing and wonderful and the first few times he did it, it brought tears to my eyes.
For some time now as you know he has followed me into the bathroom when I need to go, so as to get petted. He has become more assertive about that, even moving fast to make sure he is the first one in there, so as to get the best position close to me for the best petting opportunity. I now have another foster dog in the house, so he has become even more eager to make sure he gets into "his" spot for bathroom-petting. He will now move closer to me, asking for more, if I stop petting him to pet another dog, and even will occasionally nudge me with his nose. All of this has been feeling so great to me I cannot express it.
Just a few days ago, though, he did something for the first time. I was petting him by massaging the top of his head, and he moved his head out from under my hand, turned a bit, and gave my hand several sweet little licks, then placed his head back under my hand again. To me, this is beyond a doubt a show of affection, because he actually moved away from my petting to lick, and then moved back again. I was thrilled. He has repeated this a few times since then.
And I was even more thrilled a few days later. I was having my love-in snuggle with dogs on the living room floor in the evening, and as always Kelso was watching from several feet away in the doorway. I would always put out a hand to him to invite him, and he has always turned and gone away. But that night when I put out a hand (not looking at him, of course, and not saying his name) he moved right in to get petted! I really almost cried that time.
Since then he has come for petting like that again, and has also not come on other occasions. But it is marvelous progress for Kelso. The trick with him is not to acknowledge him directly. If I look right at him or say his name, he will go away. If I pretend I do not know he is there, I am just petting some unknown dog's head.....then he will come and stay. At the same time, however, I also am stopping to pet him as I go by him in the house, and occasionally I will seek him out for a little petting. He has stopped running away when I do that, and sometimes will give me his belly to be rubbed.
The thing is that all of this adds up to a very positive picture. Right now he only seeks out petting in the bathroom, but allows it at other times.....soon he will seek out petting at other times as well, and it will grow. I am so happy to see him starting to come out of his hard shell.
This weekend he will see some people: I have friends coming for brunch
Saturday and someone coming on sunday who has volunteered to come over to help socialize him. It will be a big weekend for Kelso. I bet he does just fine.
Left to right: Kit, Jester, Boo, Digger
"You gonna throw that?" --Jester: 2001 - June 24 2016. Remembered with much love.
"I'm grouchier than you are" --Kit
"I love everyone!" -- Boo
(Boing! Boing! Boing!)--Digger
And not pictured, Benjamin the cat, who thinks he is a small border collie with superpowers.