Advanced search

How do you react if your dog gets snarled or snapped at.

(32 Posts)
Izzywigs Thu 10-May-18 15:34:56

I have had my 8 year old Terrier for 5 months. She is my first dog. When she arrived she had all sorts of issues and was very timid absolutely scared of everything. Over the months she has changed a great deal. She is very good at home , has grown in confidence and is now mostly a pleasure to walk.

I can never let her off the lead and most of the time she walks quite closely to me. The problem is when off lead dogs approach her in the park, she snarls and snaps.

Part of me feels embarrassed and I used to apologise, but now I just try to get her away. The problem some dogs are so insistent with following her. If you walk your dog off lead how would you feel about the snarling and snapping.

OP’s posts: |
SpanielsAreNuts Thu 10-May-18 15:49:41

You and your dog are not doing anything wrong!

The fault is firmly with the off lead dog's owner.

You tell them she isn't dog friendly and to recall their dog, before the dog even gets to you.

Nesssie Thu 10-May-18 16:05:55

If your dog is on lead and an off lead dog comes up, then it is all on the off lead dogs/owner. No fault of yours.

Happens to me all the time - I have a reactive dog, always keep him on lead and am hyper alert to any dogs around. He walks beautifully to heel, ignores everyone/thing around us. Until some sodding dog runs across a field, completely ignoring owners recall and gets too close and then he will growl and snap and lunge.

But apparently my dog is the one out of control? hmm

You will either get the lovely responsible people who when they see a dog on lead will call their dog over, or you get the arseholes like above.

Just say 'please keep your dog away' and then walk away. It is embarrassing but it shouldn't be.

Nesssie Thu 10-May-18 16:06:29

Wow, that brought out a lot of pent up frustration! Sorry!

bengalcat Thu 10-May-18 16:10:02

Not your or your dogs fault - many dogs get a bit narky when they are in a lead and there's a free dog around - the dog off lead owners should consider this and recall their animal

SpanielsAreNuts Thu 10-May-18 16:10:43

Nesssie in that situation, if off lead dog's owner tries to tell you your dog is out of control - point out to them, that under the dangerous dogs act it is actually their dog who is legally classed as out of control.

bella2bella Thu 10-May-18 16:10:50

My dogs love other dogs and aren't at all timid and still don't like off lead dogs sniffing them and not leaving them alone (fine when both off lead). If one of mine was snarled at when approaching another dog (although I call them to me when another dog is on the lead), I'd apologise for allowing my dog near them.

Although I wouldn't apologise if all involved dogs were off lead. I just call my dogs back and keep walking then.

TSSDNCOP Thu 10-May-18 16:22:14

Thus infuriates me. I walk my sisters Staffie. He’s a sweetie but I keep him in lead at all times as she’d kill me if he ran off, further I don’t know him well enough to know what might piss him off.

Bet your bottom fuckng dollar we get jumped on by two “adorable/so friendly” lab/retriever/springer types who’s owners go totally Daily Fail on us when he snaps.

IrianOfW Thu 10-May-18 16:25:07

If we come across a dog on a lead he gets recalled straight away. I always assume that an on-lead dog might have an uncertain temper and act accordingly.

CMOTDibbler Thu 10-May-18 16:39:25

If my dog is off lead and approaches a dog on the lead and gets snarled at, fine, it's my dogs fault and mine for not seeing them and recalling.
But if we are walking somewhere that it's not like my dogs are running up to them (on a path for instance) or my dogs are on the lead and the owner doesn't give me warning or move out of the way then I do get cross about my dogs getting snarled and snapped at as they go past. Even more so if we are standing in a queue or sitting at a table and people let their dogs snarl when mine aren't doing anything at all.

missbattenburg Thu 10-May-18 17:04:21

If my dog is off lead and gets snarled at? I apologise profusely for him being a badly behaved little bugger, for me being a lapse owner who wasn't paying attention, grab him, put him back on the lead quickly and high tail it out of there in shame. This hardly ever happens because I live in the arse end of nowhere and we walk in open fields where I can see trouble coming a mile off. Every now and again we turn a corner or I get lost in a daydream and we and get caught short, but not often.

If my dog is on lead and gets snarled at? I genuinely feel for the owner of the reactive dog and normally make soothing, cooing type words to the other dog - something like "oh sweetheart, don't you worry, this bouncing little bugger is coming with me and won't bother you one bit". I then try and give the owner a big, genuine grin and move on quickly so they can enjoy their walk.

Izzywigs Thu 10-May-18 17:17:27

Thank you. I feel much better now. If she is on the extender lead and I see another dog, I immediately reel her in and put her on her harness lead. I hope that owner will realise why I am doing it, but they still let them come bounding up.

OP’s posts: |
picklemepopcorn Thu 10-May-18 17:20:29

I say, "that's ok, don't worry, she's telling him what she thinks, he'll know to leave her alone now".

No drama, no fuss, and she learns to be confident that she can tell people off for being pushy, my dog learns that this dog doesn't want to play.

If they don't get to express themselves, they never learn each other's body language.

TopBitchoftheWitches Thu 10-May-18 18:25:50

My dog is a female and very protective.

Recently when out walking we came across a black female gsd, also on lead. My gsd decided that because she was protecting me and could hear my children playing in the field ahead that she would lose her shit at this dog. Both on lead.

I got mine by her collar and apologise to the man walking the other dog. He said 'you haven't seen what she (his dog) is going to do yet' then she started as well.

It's helpful to come across owners who understand that not all dogs play nice.

Sadly there aren't that many about it seems.

sobeyondthehills Thu 10-May-18 18:33:59

My dog wears a big orange coat that says fuck off (not in those exact terms) and also a red collar that says warning on it and we still have dogs bounding up to us.

I walk off. The only time this has been an issue is when the dog followed us out the park and partly up the road, till I stopped and had to try and keep my dog behind my legs on a short lead and moving the other dog round me till the owner caught up. She informed me I should have him on a muzzle (my dog hadn't done anything other than really growl and snap) I informed her she should teach her dog recall.

Having said that, I try and walk my dog at the same time. I have a park very near me that at certain times of day, I can be alone in for half an hour to an hour. It is also fantastic because you can stand in the middle of it and see all the entrances. I went there and the place was empty took my dog off lead and worked through some training things with him, I saw a lady walk in with her dog, see me and wait patiently till I got my dog on his lead, so with the bad there is often some good

AvocadosBeforeMortgages Thu 10-May-18 18:46:51

Mine is reactive to motorbikes (of course) and has a bit of a history of being a frustrated greeter, so I've seen both sides of the issue.

It depends on the circumstances - if he's been a pest to another dog and has been told off, I'll regard it as him having deserved it.

On one occasion he approached another off lead dog in a very dog heavy park. Each sniffed politely until 5 seconds later the other dog went for his throat - I wasn't too chuffed. On another occasion a mastiff type dog and owner approached us from behind on the pavement and suddenly lunged, snapped and snarled. If I hadn't been so terrified I would have given him a piece of my mind. If it's something less serious and the owner looks a bit embarrassed I'll laugh it off and make reference to my dog's long list of social faux pas.

If he growls or barks at another dog he can't greet (only happens on lead because of his residual frustrated greeter issues) I'll apologise and make a comment to the effect that he's frustrated because he can't say hello, but he's a work in progress.

I tend to take the view that if your dog isn't great with other dogs, you need to give people a bit of a hint. 95% of dogs are on lead because their recall is crap, and people need some help to identify the other 5%. Your average Joe dog owner who probably isn't particularly plugged into the dog community and doesn't understand lead etiquette needs something really obvious. A big yellow dog coat with the words "NO DOGS" is about as obvious as you can get - it won't be a panacea but it will at least reduce it. At the same time, if you see an off lead dog approaching, "can you keep your dog back please, mine isn't great with other dogs". What other owners should automatically do / know about / understand is neither here nor there as you have to cater for the lowest common denominator.

Izzywigs Thu 10-May-18 19:33:32

The big problem of course is that the dog that is approaching has an owner too far away. Most owners don’t seem aware of what their dog is doing. We also seem to have a lot of dog walkers with 3 or 4 off lead. If I see them I quickly go in another direction but some dogs just persist.

OP’s posts: |
IrianOfW Fri 11-May-18 11:17:37

We were in a dog-friendly pub recently. DDog was walking nicely to heel when two little terriers with anger issues started yapping and snarling at him from under a nearby table, pulling at their leads. Ddog looked a bit embarrassed, gave one indignant woof and walked off with us to another part of the pub. Ten minutes later they started again but this time at a mastiff - when he woofed at them they shut up at once as the pub shook grin

Sometimes you can't avoid on lead dogs and even when your dog is under control it can cause issues.

Izzywigs Fri 11-May-18 11:52:17

She is not a dog we can take anywhere other than open spaces. I would love to go to a pub with her, but it would be too stressful for her and us.

People think it is ok to approach her even when I explain her history. She will sit by my side while they talk to me and because she seems calm they will then lean into her or reach out to her. I have learnt to move very fast.

OP’s posts: |
mrsjoyfulprizeforraffiawork Fri 11-May-18 14:16:06

I have my dog on the lead a lot if there is wildlife, cats or children about (she is very frightened of children). Sometimes I meet another dogwalker with a dog walking free and the 2 dogs do a meet and greet. This can go very well or sometimes they just don't like the cut of each other's jib and tense up and the tails go from a tentative wag to a stop, nose-to-nose. I always try to say good dogs, hallo, and other nonsense in carefree tones whilst pulling mine away from the stand-off. Of course, sometimes they start to growl/bark at each other at that point and we just retreat. The other owner hardly ever calls their dog off (until much later!) - and some of them have the cheek to say, "It is because yours is on a lead" (no, it is because you didn't call yours away when they started deciding they didn't like each other much).

mrsjoyfulprizeforraffiawork Fri 11-May-18 14:20:22

People think it is ok to approach her even when I explain her history. She will sit by my side while they talk to me and because she seems calm they will then lean into her or reach out to her. I have learnt to move very fast.
Mine is terrified of children. I know what you mean. You get no warning but if they appear to be coming at her, from standing quietly next to me(on a lead), she'll suddenly leap forward, snarling and snapping. It has happened only a couple of times in the early days and no harm done because I moved fast but now I know to take detours to avoid being anywhere near any child under about 14. We do go to the pub for lunch but pick a corner table and nowhere near any children/babies.

Cath2907 Fri 11-May-18 15:04:23

I have a rambunctious loves the world puppy. He is kept on a lead when there are other dogs around but still sometimes gets' told off. I think it is good for him to learn some manners and tend to say that to the owner of the grumpy dog. Not everyone wants to get harassed by a 5 month old ball of soggy white fur!

Spudlet Fri 11-May-18 15:12:28

As with pps, I apologise and feel very embarrassed. It doesn't happen often, but nobody's perfect and it has happened once or twice.

If we got chatting about it subsequently I might recommend a couple of local trainers / behaviourists that I know, because they're very good and might be able to help. But only if the conversation went that way and to be helpful, not narky, IYSWIM?

NotARegularPenguin Fri 11-May-18 15:17:06

If my off lead dog apparoached an on lead dog I’d be embarrassed and apologise.

If an off lead dog approached my on lead dog and my dog was feeling so defensive that it snapped I’d be fairly curt with the other owner and tell them to get their dog under control and away from mine.

Hilltoptea Fri 11-May-18 15:40:36

Same as above if my dog approached I'd be very embarrassed and apologise blush

If my dog gets snarled at or snapped at again I'd apologise for letting my dog get so close.

You are in the right here, you have your dog on a lead, please try not to worry.

IMO any dog on a lead should be given a clear berth in case they don't like other dogs.

I know what it's like having a snappy dog and it's not easy!!

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in