Spic and Span 1/14/14– Span is still difficult to catch. As soon as I come into his pen he trots. Head, ears and tail are up. His demeanor looks as if it could be playfulness but I interpret it as fear. Perhaps he is still concerned that I’m a predator. The pen that he shares with a Spic is about 100 feet across and round–a little big for round pen training but it will do. I pretend his running from me is my idea and encourage him to trot. Meantime Spic is all friendliness and comes up to me wanting to be petted. I pet him for a minute but I cannot forget about Span’s rude infraction. I have to keep Span moving. I don’t want him to think he has been rewarded for his bad behavior. Spic, still free, in good fun joins in the chase. He runs after Span, biting and kicking him. Poor Span is no doubt feeling persecuted. I have to stop the whole process to catch Spic who is feeling cocky and is having a thoroughly good time. Spic does not want to be caught even to be petted. He is having too much fun. Nevertheless he quiets down in a minute or two allowing me to put his halter on and tie him in the shed. As I return to my discipline with Span, Spic stomps and rears, wanting to join the fun again.
After 10 minutes or so of running Span is starting to wonder whose idea this is anyway and it is becoming apparent that it is the human’s idea. When I ask him to whoa and turn once again Span slows down and looks thoughtfully at me. I take a passive stance. As I move toward him. He starts to move away. I resume a dominant stance and continue the chasing. After a few repetitions of these body language communications Span’s attentive thoughtfulness continues steady as I walk toward him in a quiet, passive, friendly manner. He finally stands and allows me to put his halter on. In the meantime Spic is whinnying and wondering why he is being left out of the action. I leave him standing and take Span to the training pen.