Hi guys, I am way out of my depth here and hoping for some advice.
I took Abe out yesterday on his own, as he is pretty dependent on Sal for comfort and reassurance and I want him to start to build some confidence of his own. At home he is coming along well, getting braver with meeting visitors and growing more confident every day. The problem is outside his yard he gets very anxious, and although I want to desensitise him I don't want to inadvertently compound the problem.
So we went to a place he hasn't been before, walked for about 10-15 mins total. I stopped to talk to a friend at one point and he sat beside me huddled into my leg trembling. She made no attempt to greet him, it was more the people all around that were stressing him. To add to that I stupidly had forgotten it was tourist season and the place would be crawling with kids and wheels (bikes, scooters, skateboards, prams) which are the scariest things in the world to Abe. He couldn't wait to get back in the car.
Now my plan was to take him out on his own every couple of days for a short time to try to get him used to people and activity around him. What I don't want to do is traumatise him. Any advice on how to do this would be much appreciated. Maybe I should take Sal too? But that seems to be defeating the purpose of trying to get him a little independent of her.