Is there some sort of 'Dog Introduction Ettiquette' I don't know about?

(36 Posts)

Because (and I may be being over-sensitive) I have noticed that a lot of people seem to want to hurry their dogs along just when mine begins to amble over for a good bum-sniffing.

It isn't that they're in a special hurry, I don't think, as I often see them bimbling along some time later.

It saddens me a bit when this happens, as my dog always seems to get much less out of a walk when she hasn't had any fun doggy encounters.

A friend has suggested that it's breed snobbery: I don't want to think this, but on reflection it really does generally seem to be people with 'purebred' dogs who do it. Ours is a mutt- a Rottie/Alsatian cross getting on in years, and a real sweetheart (I may be biased).

By the way, I am referring to dogs who are off the leash here- I would tend to assume that they haven't got behavioural issues that mean they need to be steered away from other dogs.

Anyway, I'd be grateful to hear about your experiences with this- or whether perhaps there is something I can do from my end (re-assure the owner by calling across to them that she's already had breakfast?). Obviously, most doggy people are friendly and do stop and chat, but we do have some mornings (like today) where my poor hound comes home looking a bit depressed. Anthropomorphism? Me?! grin

tabulahrasa Thu 21-Mar-13 19:00:29

fan - mine is the same, he's actually allowed off lead now, but he has no recall and no blooming manners, so I don't let him off. He's also still not allowed to play roughly and that is all he wants to do, so even with dogs I know well and who would play with him I can't let him anyway. So I've been using a harness and a flexi lead and sticking him on his real lead when another dog or person comes along.

Because mine is so big, I can't risk him bouncing on other dogs or a person, it's just not fair to them, so it's just a case of making sure he never gets the chance to.

I'm more than happy to get the chance for him to say hello to other dogs - I just keep a tight hold of him so that he gets to sniff and the second a paw leaves the ground I have him away, but people see him from about 200 yards away and quickly round up their dogs and go the other way, lol.

Feels like catch 22 doesn't it? But I can't risk it because he is a menace when it comes to bothering people.

Thanks for all the helpful replies- I imagine you're probably representative, and it sounds like a fair mix of good reasons. Most days we do meet one or two dogs she can greet (she's not quite as puppyish as I may have made her sound- she's 7 and only gets bouncy with one or two particular dogs she really gets one with). She's really quite calm and I wouldn't read her behaviour towards other dogs as 'pushy' or 'rude' in any way. She doesn't insist on going up if the dog clearly has no interest in meeting- she just alters course and walks on. Even if not, her recall is good.

I am not as seasoned a dog owner as you all sound, I admit; my partner has had dogs over the years but I've only had this one, and she came to us as a foster placement who stayed. We've learned together though, over the last couple of years but there are definitely some gaps in my education! Which brings me to the puppies thing: we meet a lot of boisterous pups, and my dog tolerates them very well. If they go too far, though, she will give them a maternal cuff, without hurting them. (I usually stop things before this happens, though it happens fairly rarely.) So... I kind of thought that this was part of the socialisation of dogs. Puppies want to jump up and play, and older dogs put them in their place if they get over-excited. I've approached this as a managed encounter, with both owners properly engaged and aware (if that makes sense?).

Any tips gratefully received!

Floralnomad Fri 22-Mar-13 09:06:00

It's the both owners being happy that is the important bit .

Owllady Fri 22-Mar-13 10:03:56

my older dog is just very anti social
she is far too sensible for other dogs you know wink

digerd Fri 22-Mar-13 12:07:51

We met a new dog this morning, who was lovely natured and very bouncy. Bit bigger and broader than mine, but my little miss liked him as he didn't overdo it and ran off chasing a squirrel. Mine would have run with him if I didn't have her on the lead, not that squirrels bother her, she just likes running.

I did meet a lady who said her rescue dog doesn't like any dogs, but as I know how males all love my girl , so far, I wasn't worried. Lady wouldn't risk them meeting up close, though.

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Fri 22-Mar-13 12:18:33

my dog is every puppy's friend - same mental age! grin She is 6.5 to half lab/mutt.

she is a domineering sod though. she has to be the boss and exerts this by standing over smaller dogs - needless to say she gets short shrift from them and never hangs around to be told twice! Puppies, however, instantly lie down and massage her ego, they then play happily together.

Our walks tend to be in a specified dog walking area, so if you go in there it is expected that your dog is a) ok with other dogs and b) well behaved.

aside from JRT straddling, my dog is well behaved and expert ball stealer blush

rubyrubyruby Fri 22-Mar-13 12:20:34

Pedigree snobbery confused

Helga - god I had to check and see I hadn't written your post.

I have a 2 year old retriever who people laugh at on account of his kangaroo impressions. He also has no interest in treats at the park, and so was a bit of a nightmare, until he learned to retrieve. Now if we're out with a ball he listens carefully and will do exactly as told - the ball is his reward and it has really helped with outdoor training.

saintly don't say that! I live in hope that the more dogs he meets my boy will settle! I know 3 is supposed to be the magic age when retrievers calm down but I don't want to deal with kangaroos till then!

He lives up to his name in that he LOVES retrieving, I'm lucky to have a 2 acre field where I can let him off lead every day. If I can get him under control there hopefully I can take the training through to walks.

He's fine greeting dogs now - the kangaroo ing comes on lead walking to the park or beach when everything is simply far too exciting grin

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