Should you 'mirror' other owners?

(180 Posts)
WinkyWinkola Mon 13-May-13 09:20:13

I walk my dog (black lab) in a field. Occasionally there are other dogs there. He likes to greet the other dogs and run with them. If they aren't interested he leaves them alone.

Today he ran up ti golden retriever on a lead. I got told off by the owner because her dog was on a lead(had been attacked before) and was nervous so my dog should be on a lead.

Is this right? My dog bounced up to hers, hers lunges and growled and my dog runs back to me and goes back again and then leaves her dog alone to come with me.

Apparently dog owners mirror others.

tabulahrasa Mon 13-May-13 13:23:25

But if it's on a lead they are keeping it away from yours. hmm

If your dog isn't well enough trained to come back to you when you tell it to - then it's your dog that is being badly behaved.

Hullygully Mon 13-May-13 13:23:39

And if your dog runs up to greet an onlead one and is ripped to shreds, how will you feel? How much consolation will it be that it wasn't your "fault" because your doggy-woggy deserves to do as it pleases?

PseudoBadger Mon 13-May-13 13:24:30

But if it's on the lead then it is away from your dog. So do likewise.

D0oinMeCleanin Mon 13-May-13 13:26:41

Kittens, your friendly dog running up to my fear aggressive dog to say hi, is enough to have her on alert for the rest of the walk, essentially stopping our training moving forward that day or even setting us back a few days/weeks in our training depending upon how enthusiastically your dog says hi. After yesterday's puppy incident Whippy was skittish even off lead, which is just what I need right at the start of summer.

Luckily, she has a playdate later with a fellow pointy puppy owner, so I'm hoping with a controlled off lead greeting she might calm down and today's skittishness will just be a one off.

If you'd popped your dog on it's lead and asked from a safe distance whether it was okay to greet I'd be happy to let my dog off to play, so long as we were not out solely to practise BAT. If you wait until your dog has already said hi, my dog ends up upset, I end up telling you to control your fucking dog, which upsets both me and you and no-one wins.

Surely it's not much to ask you to call her back and restrain her while we walk past (it would take all of a minute), whereas uncontrolled greetings cost me hours and hours of training time.

WynkenBlynkenandNod Mon 13-May-13 13:33:07

DH was saying about the Yellow Dog Project thing yesterday, there are signs up in the local woods about it, good idea, a visual reminder of basic dog walking etiquette.

Kittens you don't need to keep her away from all dogs, just onlead dogs. This morning I walked Plog. She played with two dogs and avoided one on lead who doesn't like other dogs near him. I use a ball as now she's a bit older she's become focused on it and I can use it to get her to walk past other dogs. It wasn't hard, everyone was happy. When she was younger I was like a Meercat, bobbing up and down to see what was coming and I'd stick her back on the lead and treat if there was an onlead dog around.

KittensoftPuppydog Mon 13-May-13 13:36:25

my dog has been attacked, by dogs off the lead. She became fear agressive after that, but was soon trained out of it, mostly by not standing for any nonsense and by encouraging her to play with other nice friendly dogs.
Hullygully, I think the poster who is getting personal and insulting is the one with the problem, don't you?

TooMuchRain Mon 13-May-13 13:36:57

I think it's best to call them back because you don't know why the dog is on a lead. My dog has just had an op on her legs and I am really worried about walking her for just this reason. She needs the exercise to help her get better but really doesn't need a dog knocking her when she has just been cut open!

D0oinMeCleanin Mon 13-May-13 13:37:45

Yellow Dog Project hasn't reached our town yet. I'd need a neon yellow flashing sign for it to help, even then I'm sure there'd be certain owners, like Kittens, who'd think it was okay to ignore it.

We practise BAT, which means as soon as whippy starts showing signs of being uncomfortable, we turn our heel and walk away quickly while I am make soothing noises at her, even though we are quickly turning away, which clearly indicates we don't want to say hi, people still don't get it <sigh>

I had hoped to get through summer doing mainly off lead walks, as she's normally fine off lead.

Hullygully Mon 13-May-13 13:39:26

No, I think the person who refuses to acknowledge and live by basic manners is the one with the problem.

Floralnomad Mon 13-May-13 13:40:53

kittens I think you are being deliberately obstructive ,if you're not I feel very sorry for your dog because eventually she will approach the wrong dog and get badly bitten .

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 13-May-13 13:41:04

Kittens you are falling to appreciate that these dogs are not made this way something bad happened them to give them this response.
In the vast majority of cases the owners are working really hard to improve this situation, but actually the only way to improve is to get out and take part in normal life.
This relies of other dog owners being thoughtful and considerate to help improve the situation.
If your dog is attacked when she is the lead she could end up being one of these dogs and then you will hope that everyone else will be considerate to you.
If your dog has excellent heel control and never deviates when you command this then you don't need to put her back on the lead just use your heel command.

ZangelbertBingeldac Mon 13-May-13 13:44:38

My dog is kept leashed because she's profoundly deaf and therefore her recall just isn't there.

I let her off at an enclosed field, but nowhere else.

The vast, vast majority of owners don't let their dogs run up to mine.

I can think of only one occasion, actually where someone let their cocker spaniel run up to my dog and it chased her - she was on lead and unable to get away and therefore felt very vulnerable and was twisting and turning on the lead and cowering in fear.

The owner then made a comment like "oh dear, what a cowardly dog, what one earth is wrong with her" grr angry

But, to answer your question - yes, etiquette wise most dog owners either leash their dogs or hold their collars when we pass.

Viviennemary Mon 13-May-13 13:46:52

I don't think dogs should be bounding up to other creatures whether they be human or animal.

D0oinMeCleanin Mon 13-May-13 13:48:00

I wish I lived near you Zangel, loads of owners let their dogs run upto Whippy sad I can only assume it's because she is so tiny, she couldn't do much damage even if she wanted to.

I bet they wouldn't do it if I had a Rotty on a lead.

Oddly more people avoid us when she is muzzled, even though she could do no damage at all when she is muzzled. We use muzzles on nice weather days to get people to stay out of our way. Maybe I should buy I spiked collar to match her muzzle and get myself a nice hoody? grin

KittensoftPuppydog Mon 13-May-13 13:54:07

I've just said that my dog has been attacked, and I've also said that she is not a nuisance, just friendly. There's really no point in talking to people who aren't listening.
Hoping that there is just someone who is listening i will finally say this, where I used to live, in not a very nice area, there was a very small fenced dog park. On good days there were lots of dogs happily playing in it. Unfortunaly there were some selfish people with badly behaved dogs who used the park and it became a no go area. These people encouraged other dog owners to stay out, which we did.
I had a limited period during which I could take my dog for a walk, and often she wouldn't get to go to the park because of the dickheads who couldn't be bothered to train their dogs.
Some of you lot are heading in this direction. Why are you making your problem my dog's problem?

D0oinMeCleanin Mon 13-May-13 13:56:58

My dog has no problem when she is left alone to walk and train at a safe distance from other dogs. If loose dogs run up to her that is their owner's problem. My dog is controlled and in training. Our only problem is entitled and lazy owners who won't or can't be arsed to train their dog to recall.

tabulahrasa Mon 13-May-13 14:01:21

But if she's being friendly too near my dog - then she is a nuisance...

D0in - mostly yes, but you'd be surprised how often they still let their dog run up, even though he's on a lead, I'm standing off the path to let them by and quite often I've got his front legs up off the ground to stop him jarring his leg. Mostly people look at him and assume he's some sort of devil dog (understandably so to be fair, lol) but the odd one seems to think it's not an issue to let their dog come and say hello hmm

fishybits Mon 13-May-13 14:14:39

Kittens. How did you train the fear out of your dog and what do you mean by "not standing for any nonsense"

BastardDog Mon 13-May-13 14:29:57

I've always had Patterdale Terriers. They are notoriously difficult to train to recall to a trustworthy standard. For that reason I walk my dogs mainly on lead. In the main I have no problem with friendly dogs approaching and greeting my dogs, I think it's an important part of keeping them socialised.

However when training them as pups or in their more advanced years when ill health problems inevitably arise, it has spoilt many a walk by off leash dogs interrupting training, harassing nervous pups or being generally bothersome to grouchy, old, ill dogs. In the main though I accept having to contend with other owners differing views as part of dog ownership. I am the meekest person and will avoid confrontation wherever possible.

But, there's one lady that lives near us that owns 3 dogs which she always walks off lead. One dog is fine but the other two are terrors. They have no recall and will run up to my dogs snapping, snarling and circling for the longest time until their owner catches up with them. If I can spot this woman coming I will turn and go a different way, but a few weeks ago it happened again and I blew my top at her. She was very taken aback and to her credit apologetic. She just didn't seem to 'get' that this was a problem. I think she just saw her dogs as a bit spirited. hmm. She is now very good at spotting me and getting her dogs under control so maybe I should have had the courage to have spoken up sooner.

KittensoftPuppydog Mon 13-May-13 14:57:47

Fishybits- IMMEDIATELY pulling away, stern words, and immediately on lead and taken out of the park. Ignoring totally for the next few minutes. Naughty step. Then make up and cuddles.
On the other side, seeking out nice friendly dogs and encouraging play so that she sees meeting other dogs as a good thing.
This has really worked for me and I was in despair for a while.
There are plenty of places where dogs are not allowed off the lead, I'm really gobsmacked by the amount of people who take their dogs to off lead places and then expect you to put your dog on the lead because their dog has problems.

D0oinMeCleanin Mon 13-May-13 15:04:12

Hang on, why should I stick to walking my dog around the boring streets just because you cannot be arsed to train your dog to recall? hmm

Most parks, beaches and woodlands are both on and off lead. All users have a duty to be considerate to other users. I keep my dogs on lead if they have potential to be aggressive, the least you can do is keep yours out of my way.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 13-May-13 15:08:04

Kitten, if your dog doesn't have good recall then its your dog that's been badly behaved. You may view your dog running up to others as been friendly, I'd view it as a dog that needs training and an irresponsible owner.

TeaTowelQueen Mon 13-May-13 15:11:02

I always put my dog on a lead if I see an approaching dog on a lead. It's just good manners.

If mine is on the lead and I see another approach off the lead, I unleash my dog if in a safe area - they are equal then, I think being equally restrained/not restrained is important in dog terms from my own observation of their behaviour

KittensoftPuppydog Mon 13-May-13 15:14:57

She does have recall. For goodness sake! I just don't want to put her on a lead because she is the vicinity of another dog. She doesn't want to talk to unfriendly dogs.
You're not making any sense re why should you have to walk round the boring streets. Your dog is the one with the problem. Why should my dog have a boring lead walk.

mrslaughan Mon 13-May-13 15:17:58

I always leash giant puppy, when I see a dog on a lead as he can't be trusted not to charge up..... Though I am also teaching him to approach other dogs calmly, as even the friendliest dog can be intimidated by 60kg bounding towards them.

The situation you describe is tricky as your dog was a way away from you, when she entered the field..... But in that situation I would be calling giant pup back - though don't know whether he would listen until he had said "hello" ( though he doesn't like be away from me - so doesn't venture far away).... But rich of her friend to give you a talking too when her digs are off lead though....

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