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Aggressive dog at the park.

(14 Posts)
MuseumOfCurry Thu 17-Nov-16 09:12:24

I was hoping for some advice on how to deal with what I perceive to be an aggressive dog at the park.

It's a Dalmatian, probably only a year old.

Every time I see the dog, he runs to my dog (a very submissive Golden Retriever) and has her on her back, and they both make horrific snarling noises that strike me as not normal dog play.

I don't think he's ever broken her skin, but once this summer her snarls turned to yelps and I pulled the dog off her, drawing a crown in the process.

This isn't normal, right?

My instincts are that this dog could really hurt mine, but the owner is a fucking nightmare and tells me I'm going to 'never socialise my dog' every time I sheepishly pull her away. I'm not confrontational and I've done the ridiculous English-polite-apology thing over and over again.

missyB1 Thu 17-Nov-16 09:18:01

You are going to have to be firm with this owner and tell her your dog does not like hers and you don't want it bothering your dog. Don't get drawn into an argument just stand your ground.

MySuperKidsAreCrazy Thu 17-Nov-16 09:22:36

We have a very submissive dog.

She is literally on her back every time a dog passes (even toy dogs!)

She is (in my opinion) socialised. She walks well off a lead and has good recall. She is very gentle natured.

However, there has been the odd occasion where our dog and another dog don't get on and the prickles on the back of her neck go up-snarles/barks/yelps between the two dogs. Maybe 5 times in the last five years.

Imo and I'm no dog expert-some dogs don't like each other.

In your situation if the other owner can't control their dog or is unwilling to keep their dog away from your then I'd probably change my walking route.

If dogs have been aggressive towards each other I can't imagine them ever being friends. And it's not fair to put either dog in a situation where they or someone could get seriously hurt.

Both dogs are big strong dogs.

WanderingAndLost Thu 17-Nov-16 09:48:41

Without actually seeing the body language it's impossible to say whether this is just play fighting (which dogs, esp young ones) do, or whether it's actively aggressive. From the sounds of it it could well be inappropriate play as opposed to outright aggression because if the other dog wanted to attack it probably would have by now.

However if you're concerned then you have to man up and step in. You have a responsibility to protect your dog and she is relying on you to have her back. You need to stop allowing this other dog to get on top of yours. Get the lead on and get out of there sharpish and let the other dog owner know in no uncertain terms that that behaviour is unacceptable.

I know that sounds harsh but I hope you'll take in the spirit in which it's intended.

MuseumOfCurry Thu 17-Nov-16 10:04:18

I've not allowed him to get near my dog since the summer incident, to be clear, and I've pissed off the owner in doing so.

My question is really about how much of this is normal, and how forthright I should be with the owner because we all know each other at the park and I wouldn't want to have words with someone for no reason. I don't know how much I can trust my judgement.

I agree it's hard to tell without seeing it.

MySuperKidsAreCrazy Thu 17-Nov-16 10:15:52

I would firmly say something along the lines of " could we make sure our dogs stay away from each other as I'm worried one of them or one of us is going to be seriously hurt"

pigsDOfly Thu 17-Nov-16 11:53:12

It doesn't matter OP how normal this behaviour is or whether you're having words for no reason. You know your dog, if you feel your dog is not happy with the interaction then you have the right to make sure the other dog doesn't cause your dog to be stressed.

People can be really cavalier (no pun intended) about their dogs' behaviour and if, as often happens, a large dog starts running at my small dog I'll have no hesitation in asking them to call their dog off; even if it mean yelling at the top of my voice across the park.

And the other owner's opinion on whether or not your dog is properly socialised? He or she needs to mind their own business. Can't see how being pined down on her back by a snarling dog is going to help your dog's socialisation one iota.

Floralnomad Thu 17-Nov-16 11:59:05

I agree with everything pigs said , but I would also stick your dog on its lead as soon as you see the dog approaching as that firmly puts the onus on the other owner to keep the dog away . My dog had an altercation with a staffy earlier this year and now has a real problem with any similar dogs so I'm having to just stick his lead on if I see one ( same with husky types) as although my dog wouldn't approach another dog if one of these types comes up to him I know he will kick off ,yet he is fine with all the bichon/ terrier / spaniel types that we walk with .

MuseumOfCurry Thu 17-Nov-16 12:03:24

OK, everyone, thanks for the advice: I feel ready to deal with this guy again. He's a complete wanker but I know his wife, kind of, she's friendly with my other dog-park friends.

The dog park is a bit like the second coming of the school gates.

MiaowTheCat Thu 17-Nov-16 15:01:38

There's one dog local to us that can clear the park of dog walkers within 5 minutes flat. Owner has a voice that could shatter glass to start with, and has no control over the dog. Dog is only walked on nice days and makes the most of it and tries to bugger off for hours on end.

It's hit the point where people just go back to the car at the first dulcet screech of "TREVORRRRRRRRR GET BACK 'ERE OR I'LL SKIN YA ALIVE! OI TREV TREV TREV!!!"

I don't particularly blame Trevor the Terrier for trying to get the fuck away to be honest.

FluffyPineapple Thu 17-Nov-16 18:26:06

Owners who dont stop their dogs from approaching other dogs are a PITA! sad Does either dog growl and show their teeth OP? If so the only thing I can suggest is you put your dog on a lead when you see them and call over to the other to do the same. If that doesn't work change your walking route. There is an unwritten rule whilst dog walking - If the other dog is on a lead you shouldn't allow your dog to approach it. If there is an altercation and a dog gets hurt the onus lies on the owner of the off lead dog.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Thu 17-Nov-16 21:00:14

I had this just the other day. Dog wouldn't leave my dog alone. Not particularly aggressive but dominant and bullying to the point where it wouldn't let my dog pass. Owner wanders up, oh he's fine, he won't hurt you. I said possibly not but he's a bloody nuisance and get him under control. Went down well, as it always does with that type of owner. They seem to think a loose dog is a right, not a privilege that has to be earnt with a rock solid recall.

Bubble2bubble Thu 17-Nov-16 22:08:29

I have had this, and deeply regret I didn't put a stop to it sooner. A lab who played with ddog3 as a pup gradually became more agressive until one day it escalated into a fight.
The other owner didn't see a problem. ( and let their dog carry on attacking other dogs in the park on a daily basis ) Poor ddog3 changed from being the dog who loved everyone to the dog who was scared of meeting strange dogs sad

If your dog doesn't like this Dalmatian then she doesn't need to play with him, and the other owner has to respect that.
There is a lot more to socialisation than rough play. Teaching your dog to meet & greet walk past onlead is also important.

Noitsnotteatimeyet Fri 18-Nov-16 09:37:55

We have this with an enormous Belgian Groenendael at our local park - when our dog was little this dog would rush over to him barking furiously. His owner looked on indulgently while his dog knocked mine off his feet and said he was only playing hmm. I said it didn't look like my dog was having much fun and asked him to call his dog away. The net result is that my dog is terrified of virtually all unknown shepherd-type dogs and we've had to do loads of work with friendly shepherds to rebuild his confidence

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