Dog owners who don't have a reactive dog, can I ask?(55 Posts)
The reactive dog thread has been really helpful.
One of my 'things I bought up' was other dog owners and what they think when they see a dog like that.
Can I ask you guys for an honest answer as to what you think when your walking your dog and you come across a reactive dog.
Is there anything us owners can say or do?
I always do my usual training stuff and praise well so I hope they know I am not just some idiot with an in trained dog.
I also bought a yellow bandana with the word nervous in it. Does that kind of thing help?
If they on a lead and under control I just nod and carry on don't think anything of it I just swap my dog to other side and or wait to they gone past
There is only one dog that I am very wary of and all time think please don't let it get of its lead(by pulling or snapping lead )as I do worry what it would do and is one I feel should be muzzled
As it will lunge even when passed it with myself and other owner in between and its strong the owner wears gardening style gloves to stop it going for
Add in walked in wooded area where you could turn corner walk right into each other before had chance to recall your own dog
I would say look where you walk if in open areas that's fine lot of time to spot and recall
But in woods etc where turning corners and could walk into each before recall makes everyone nervous
(If I see a dog on lead I always recall leash mine till checked with owner
I'm probably not your average person as I'm a dog trainer, but FWIW...
What I think depends on how the owner is dealing with it. A person walking Along, dragging a manic dog, swearing etc will get me tutting and being judges.
A person with their dog muzzled, with a bandana as you describe, working to get their dog focusing on them will make me think they're working on the problems, possibly it's a rescue or the dog has been attacked. If I'm close enough I'll thank them for controlling their dog.
Finally, somebody desperately clinging to the lead of a dog barking and growling, unsuccessfully calling the dog / trying to calm it down will make me feel quiet sorry for both of them, that they must both be quite stressed and how hard going out must be. I've been known to stop and ask people if they're Ok in this situation and suggest a really good local behaviourist.
Basically, if you're trying, I won't judge you badly!
As long as you are actively managing it, I would say a cheery hi and give you space.
The only people I judge are the ones where I can read the body language a mile off and see that a dog is going to be an issue, but the beggar who owns it is apparently surprised and/or no efforts are made to control them.
Same here, I feel sympathy for most, the only time I g3t cross is with people who think it's OK for their dog to run at mine barking and growling (obviously no one on that thread does!). It tends to be some (and it is only some before I get shouted at!) Owners of little dogs who think it is funny that their dog is having a go at my big dog. My dog is a big softie but I really don't like the assumption that she has to take other dogs having a go in her face!
But for everyone else I just feel sympathy. And irritated on their behalf when other owners let their 'friendly ' dogs jump all over them. My dog wants to say hello to every dog she can, it's really not hard to keep her under control and on the times I've not been on the ball I've been mortified!
Our new dd rescue runs up barking at other dogs. He goes completely deaf when he sees another dog. He's never shown aggression but I know some dogs are not impressed by him barking in their faces. I think he's fine if they run and play with him but not all dogs want to do this. I'm working on it but any tips welcome.
My dog goes deaf sometimes. Sometimes if I'm not on the ball ( and yes I drop it sometimes but he never let off the lead so nothing would ever happen)
When a dog gets that stressed they can't hear you, take commands or eat food. So to some people it must look like I am not in control at all. They haven't seen the three other dogs I managed to get him past without any problems.
But mine will be reactive to feathers on the floor so sometimes it's hard. I just sometimes want to wear a big label saying I am working with him he is not a untrained dog
Anyone with their dog off the lead that doesn't have good recall gets my goat, and I will judge, (and possibly shout if they come too close).
One of my rescued greys struggles with small dogs, he is always muzzled and on the lead, but a terrier running around his legs stresses him out (and he doesn't seem to recognise that they aren't prey - so isn't interested in playing).
However, if he's on a lead then you have control, physically if not quite training wise, many of us have been through it, so I've give you a wry smile to let you know I feel your pain and say thanks.
TheFlyingFauxPas...you need to stop him running up to them, you could try a longline until you've cracked it.
OP - I doubt you'll get the same responses on here as in RL, mumsnetters tend on the whole to be more sensible than some of the people I meet.
The vast majority of people are actually ok, it's just the odd one...I have on occasion been tempted to just let my dog at people I wouldn't really, obviously, but some people are just arses, I assume those that are arsey and judgmental about a reactive on lead dog who isn't actually in anything like touching distance to them are basically like that all the time.
Controversial possibly, but has anyone found it is more men than women with dogs doing what the hell they like? And get furious when told to get their dog under control? Nearly every walk I've had recently I've met at least one bloke with a dog who has run at every dog it meets. I even warned one guy that the dog in the distance was not friendly, yet he let it run repeatedly at its face winding it up so much it was growling and snapping. I put my dog on the lead and moved away to let the poor woman past but he seemed to think it was her fault for having a reactive dog! Which was under control until his puppy jumped all over its face. I was gobsmacked.
No, it's both IME.
Though men tend to be more confrontational about my reactive dog.
If someone is managing their reactive dog, then they get a cheery smile, my dogs on short leads and moved past swiftly. I do judge the tosser who walks down a particular footpath which has a ditch and hedge both sides (so no escape) with his barking terriers off lead and who can't recall them, so they are jumping up and snapping at my on lead dogs (paying no attention as tbh ddog1 is just confused by this) and then says 'oh, they're scared of big dogs' like its my problem. Its quite common for people to let their small dog lunge and bark at mine and think its ok because mine are big tbh.
A bandana, or anything that can be seen at a distance really helps me to do an early intervention to make sure you are OK. One guy today (on afore mentioned path) moved to the side, put his dog in a sit behind him, and gave clear body language that the dog needed space. No problem. Another couple of ladies I see turn their dogs into the hedge and block them, again, very clear to interpret from a distance.
Opposite here I find its women and or small dogs as seem think as there dog small it's funny
Definitely men are worse here, but we live in an area with a big Military base, so there are a lot of gruff army men who train their dogs really aggressively. I can always spot an army guy a mile off!
As long as the dog is on a lead and the owner is doing their best to control the situation I generally just think how glad I am that I don't have that problem with my ddog. And sympathy for the owner as having been through that with a previous dog (who went to puppy classes and training but after being attacked by two dogs at 6 months old) was dog reactive.
So I would not judge that owner as I know that sometimes no matter what you do you could end up with a dog aggressive dog.
It's the owner who obviously don't care that I can't stand, the ones who let their dogs off lead to bother other dogs.
Msadora - I have that tabbard with 'space please' on it so I can ride horses and dog walk in it.
It's been really helpful.
I've also ordered a bandana too.
I dont judge at all - but do find it is interesting how people do judge me. I have reactive dogs (that have hours of training, I do avoid trigger situation so often turn away from other dogs etc so it is rare that people see him react) If they cause my dog to react I am often given advice usually let them off the lead they will be fine
If I am walking my non reactive dogs I get praised for my training and how well behaved my dogs are - tbh they have not needed training for general social skills.
Present company excepted I have just come to the conclusion that most dog owners are numpties and I don't give a dam what they think and try to avoid all pet dog owners.
Today I have been at an agility show with my reactive boy - generally people there are much more dog savvy and understand dogs much better. There were hundreds of dogs and not once did my reactive boy feel the need to react as people gave him space and respected him as they do all the dogs. Walk him around our village and meet the average dog owner and it is a very different story.
Generally if people stopped judging and just give all dogs space, be a bit aware of what is going on around you eg if the owner is turning away from you then do not let your loose "he wants to be friend" dog charge up. Always ask before you let your dog interact with any dog for their safety and as a general courtesy.
I just smile and walk past, keeping my dog on a short lead (teenage puppy so not very sensible).
The only time I've been slightly annoyed is when a woman came along the beach with 5 dogs off lead and told me to put my dog on a lead because a couple of hers were reactive. But then I reasoned that I get to let my dog off lead all the time and her dogs probably don't get to do that very much so it wasn't a massive deal.
If a dog is on lead, then I don't let my dog go anywhere near it. If it's running about, I kind of assume that it's okay for my dog to go over and say hello. If the other dog isn't happy to play with my dog, I call him away.
I don't judge. I get annoyed if the dog is offlead and the owner is unable to get their dog as I haul my spaniel up in the air. Mostly feel sorry for them that walks are such hard work though. Definitely don't think anything of it if their dog is on lead and owners are trying to calm/control their dog.
However I get v annoyed when walking my mums reactive dog at idiots letting their 'friendly' dogs run riot. If everyone put their dogs lead on when they saw a leashed dog approaching there would be far fewer incidents.
Having said that, what breed of dog do you have? My elderly neighbour has a reactive German shepard who he can't control, even on lead. I judge him a bit as he's putting others at risk, and not the same risk if it was, say, a Chihuahua.
"Having said that, what breed of dog do you have? My elderly neighbour has a reactive German shepard who he can't control, even on lead. I judge him a bit as he's putting others at risk, and not the same risk if it was, say, a Chihuahua."
Surely the issue there is that he can't control a dog that size rather the the actual size or breed of the dog?
" I get annoyed if the dog is offlead and the owner is unable to get their dog as I haul my spaniel up in the air." Why do you haul your spaniel up in the air??
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