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Please tell me if I am wrong/how I could have handled this situation better

(7 Posts)
EllieandAnna Sun 17-Apr-16 22:06:05

Hi, will try to get to the point without going on too much. Want to know whether I'm overly anxious/misread this situation or not.

Ddog is indifferent to other dogs if they are not bothering her and will occasionally greet some dogs excitedly if they don't approach her first. She will air snap/bark if dogs get in her face or chase her. She also gets her hackles up whenever aroused/scared/excited. I tend to notbother trying to get her to play with others as she doesn't seem interested.

So, we were with friends at a pub beer garden. Ddog had met 2 friends dogs on a walk long time ago with no problems, we had even had dinner at one friends with the one of the dogs in the same room, not playing but both laying in the same room with the odd bark at each other. Dh wanted them all to play (even though ddog never wants to play with dogs) one dog came bounding over in the car park whilst ddog on lead, as she isn't good on the lead I let it go. This dog was chasing mine all over the place and then another got added to the mix, they then got enclosed onto the grass area. Ddog was running away with full hackles up and making some strange whining noise, both dogs were chasing her and she turned and growled, both dogs then seemed to be growling at her and one jumped on her. I don't know whether they were snapping at each other but they were both growling. The owner started asking for help from others saying they were fighting but every time I tried to separate them one dog kept jumping on mine. I finally got in the middle and took my dog through a gate to separate them. One dog stayed in there and another got taken inside. Dh then comes out from inside after hearing all the noise and proceeds to put them both together again as he says they were playing and just sorting out the 'pecking' order. They started doing the same then dh shouted, separated them and then they just seemed to roam around separately for a minute before I took ours out.
Dh said I overreacted and if they were going to fight we wouldn't have been able to separate them, they were just playing and were fine once dh stepped in so obviously sensed we were nervous. The way I saw it was that ddog was in a situation she wasn't happy with and was trying to warn this dog. They may have started up again had I not taken her out. She may well have sensed my nerves but when the owner is shouting for help and saying they're fighting I take it as that as she knows her dog better than I do and, although ddog has never bitten I see the snap and growl as warnings and that she may bite if provoked further.

We have had this a few times and we always disagree, I would just hate for ddog to be put in what I perceive to be stressful situations for her and it to escalate to the point someone is hurt.

Am I being over dramatic?!

Godstopper Sun 17-Apr-16 23:47:06

If your DH does not quickly learn some dog psychology, then you are very likely going to end up with a fear aggressive dog. I am not saying this to be rude, but it is the reality of the situation. Your dog was telling the others to back off: there is no "pecking order", just a nervous, stressed dog. And each time that situation is repeated, it will escalate. I have a fear aggressive dog (for very different reason!), and it's not a road you want to go down.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Mon 18-Apr-16 09:31:46

Yep, your Dh is a twat. Your dog was stressed and telling you in the only way she could and your Dh put them back together???

As above, he needs to learn some dog handling skills. Fast. I'd be wary of letting him walk her by himself in future either if he can't be trusted to have a bit of bloody common sense.

EllieandAnna Mon 18-Apr-16 09:49:21

I'm glad I'm not in the wrong, although I understand my stress in the situation may not have helped. We had very strong words and I have told him I won't have her mixing with dogs like that again, it just isn't fair on her. Showed him the signs of a stressed/fear aggressive dog, he says ok but I'm not sure if he's just placating me.

He never walks her alone these days as I'm on mat leave and walk her whilst he's at work. It makes me so angry that he puts her in those situations because he listens to people with 'old school' dog discipline views. I feel I know her and her cues and most people say she responds to me better but dh is having none of it. I just don't know how to make him see that mixing with lively and in your face dogs is not in ddogs best interests.

Thank for letting me know I'm not being over the top, I'll stick to my guns on this.

EllieandAnna Mon 18-Apr-16 09:53:23

Also I'm starting to wonder whether that's why she's reactive on the lead/snaps at dogs in her face as dh used to be the one to do the bulk pf the walking. Do you think a dog trainer would be beneficial (as much fir dh as gor ddog) or could I make improvements my self and make sure dh gollows suit?

YorkieDorkie Mon 18-Apr-16 09:57:56

Your poor DDog! It's always hard to know what to do for the best. Our dog is just the same. She really don't interact well with others so she has a nice peaceful life with humans (we're very very rural, rarely meet other people when out walking).

Godstopper Mon 18-Apr-16 13:28:36

Reactive on-lead? Hard to guess, but often, it's because they have no room to escape safely. Many dogs are better off-lead than on.

It seems, from what you have said, that your dog isn't too bad [i]left to her own devices[/i]. But if that's not respected, it will become worse to the point where she is reactive off-lead. That's no fun for anyone. My Scrabble started off like this, until one day, she was attacked through no fault of her own .... and we're dealing with the fall-out.

I'd work on your DH than getting a dog trainer at this point. Though if there is a class that practices reward based training nearby, then that might be an option as you can both see how it will be beneficial? Depends on your DH's attitude, really.

Good you're standing firm. It'll save a lot of problems later down the line!

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