Did I kick her dog?

(41 Posts)
missbattenburg Sat 06-Apr-19 10:09:55

Ok, I need a bit of a rant – and maybe to be told I behaved like a dick. There are 2 labs in the village that are friendly but have poor recall. Battendog has been on a long trailing lead lately as we’re working on trying to get distracted by other dogs. In the past he and this male lab have fought over treats. All blust and no damage. Battendog can guard food/toys against other dogs and we have been working on that.

Three times in a row the male lab (followed by the female) has run up to us in the field, often bringing a stick or toy with him. The owner has taken several minutes to get to us and I have struggled with the 3 dogs all milling around by my feet. Battendog looking like he might bust with frustration trying to get the stick and the labs also jumping up around my chest as they both want the hotdogs I carry. Tense moments.

The fourth time the lab helped himself to a mouthful of hotdog and as he withdrew his head from the treat pouch, scattered loads all on the floor around us. Battendog stood like a stone, tense and ready to fight. The lab hoovered all the treats up and came back for more. By this time the female was over and also jumping up. I had muddy pay prints around the collar of my shirt when I got back to give sense of how high they jump. The owner was on her way but still a long way away and recall was not working. I had Battendog’s lead in one hand and my other covering the treats to protect them.

At this point the owner claims I kicked her dog. I honestly cannot remember. What I do know is that I could not have deliberately taken aim and come onto contact with the lab with my foot with any force. It would be so out of character for me that I surely would remember it. What I can imagine doing is using my leg (both hands taken) to keep him away – maybe by raising the leg, maybe by using the side of the calf to push him, maybe by pushing my foot out to try and block him, maybe stepping forward onto that foot in a deliberate manner to try and block or cause him to step back. I definately remember swearing at him and telling him loudly and forcefully to get down.

Today I tried to approach her (we see each other often) thinking we might be able to talk it out. She basically had a go at me, saying my behaviour was “outrageous” and that there was no reason for me to go around kicking other people’s dogs.

I feel so shit about it. It’s a small village and I would hate to think anyone round here thought I was hurting dogs. Have I been a dick?

OP’s posts: |
Dowdydoes Sat 06-Apr-19 10:11:30

No but she is. A real arse and everyone will know already.

Chocolateisfab Sat 06-Apr-19 10:12:32

Control you bloody ddogs or I will take measures to keep it off my person. If that means kick him away then so be it!!
Bloody cf owner imo!!
Your ddog was very controlled btw!! My Lurchers would have spontaneously combusted!!

Celebelly Sat 06-Apr-19 10:14:08

Her dogs were dangerously out of control and you were well within your rights to block them and defend you and your dog. She's going to end up in real trouble one day when her dogs knock down and injure someone or annoy the wrong dog.

Smoggle Sat 06-Apr-19 10:14:39

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Celebelly Sat 06-Apr-19 10:16:41

I carry my DD in a sling on dog walks. You can bet I'd be kicking out if someone's untrained and uncontrolled dog was allowed to jump all over me. She's bloody fortunate you weren't injured.

missbattenburg Sat 06-Apr-19 10:23:09

In the spirit of portraying this as honestly as I can, the things the other owner may say in their defence:
- she was on her way so I knew help was coming
- whilst the dogs have fought before, they have not caused any damage
- I was frurated and angry so my behaviour towards the dogs was coloured by that - e.g the swearing at them
- the male lab has recently had a couple of health scares which he seems well recovered from but as he is not my dog I could not be 100% sure

OP’s posts: |

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AvocadosBeforeMortgages Sat 06-Apr-19 10:25:24

It's a good job it was you that they jumped up at, and not someone elderly or with a disability (visible or invisible); they could have been hospitalised. Likewise if they'd done it to a reactive dog they'd have been in trouble.

She's in the wrong, you're not. I presume that in the small village her dogs have a reputation for jumping up and you do not have a reputation for mistreating dogs. I imagine that people will draw their own conclusions.

BiteyShark Sat 06-Apr-19 11:12:14

Any dog who jumps up at a person, let alone one that can put its paws up that high deserves to be pushed away. If it was my dog I would expect the person to physically try to stop him.

I find the worst owners are those that can't stand any critisism of their dog because they think it reflects badly on them and they think they are perfect owners and have trained perfect dogs.

Most people aren't daft. I can understand your worry about people thinking badly of you but most of us have had the out of control bouncy dog around us at one time or another so understand. I think you need to develop a thicker skin and be a bit tougher with this owner.

OverFedStanley Sat 06-Apr-19 11:33:24

If you were being mugged by her dogs she does not have a leg to stand on.

We could get all legal and quote the dogs act at her.

Agree with Bitey it is often the worst behaved dogs who always make excuses for their dogs and blame others.

If she has done this to you she will have done it to other dog owners too. Do not worry about your reputation.

I would just avoid her like the plague.

ABC1234DEF Sat 06-Apr-19 11:44:03

If her dogs were suitably under control you wouldn't be able to kick them, whether you did or not (I'm pretty sure you'd know if you did - I've been known to give unwelcome persistent off lead dogs a good shove away with my foot in the past as it is preferable to having their face ripped off by my dog).

I'd report to the dog warden via the local council to be honest. If you've had this number of run ins, how many have other people had as well? So far, as far as you know there's never been a serious incident, but as previously mentioned, if it were an elderly person, someone with a disability or a child, there could be some serious damage done even if these dogs aren't in the slightest bit aggressive.

My dog was massively reactive when other dogs invaded his space, more so as he got older and lost his hearing and his sight. Over friendly labradors with inept owners were my absolute worst nightmare

Nettleskeins Sat 06-Apr-19 13:20:19

I've just been in the park with my 5 month old puppy and noticed I was getting very bad behaviour from other dogs the minute I started treating my own dog for good behaviour (recall, that sort of thing) Unfortunately I think the smell drives them wild. I'm wondering whether if I am in a over populated area (this was a massive park btw but v popular with off lead dogs) at a busy time I should just stick to other methods of reward which are at ground level.

Labradors jumping up is not acceptable, I've known a legal case arising from a mild manner lab jumping on a passerby without a dog and knocking him down, it doesn't matter if your dog is just scared or friendly, it is still considered unacceptable legally.

However, I'm wondering whether the thing to work on, in your particular case is your response to unruly dogs. You are obviously a dog person so your body language could go a long way to detering bad behaviour perhaps? I think dogs get excited by shouting and don't necessarily stop jumping because of it. I don't think you kicked the dog but you made have had to defend yourself in a frightening situation, that is not the same as kicking. And I think you should say as much to the owner, whilst at the same time admitting you were frightened by their behaviour. Perhaps compromise and she will probably apologise and control her dogs better in future.

missbattenburg Sat 06-Apr-19 13:43:17

You are obviously a dog person so your body language could go a long way to deterring bad behaviour perhaps?

Maybe. Things I had tried on the occasions prior to this:

- turning my back on the lab (he jumped at my back then ran round to the front).
- standing stock still and blanking him, to wait for the owner to come up to us, during which time the lab repeatedly jumped
- asking the lab to 'sit' so I could perhaps hand out treats in a controlled manner (didn't work - he didn't sit)
- throwing the stick away in the hope he would take it back to her; he didn't - perhaps predictably he thought this was brilliant and brought it back to me

I had pointed out to her on a previous occasions that both dogs had started growling at each other (they had) and I was concerned I was going to have a fight on my hands. I think she is not concerned about fights - sees them as just part of having dogs - so this didn't seem to have an effect.

When I spoke to her this morning, opening with "are you miffed at me?" in as friendly manner as I could muster her response was to say "I just don't appreciate you kicking my dog. To be honest, I don't want to get into a conversation with you because I think your behaviour is pretty outrageous. You cannot go around kicking other people's dogs" and then walked off, so I didn't get any real chance to explain.

I am absolutely open to suggestions on other things I could have done. Whilst the silver lining to all this is she now puts her dogs back on leash when she sees us, I can imagine she will grow tired of this and we may find ourselves back there.

I think you need to develop a thicker skin

This is definitely true. Mostly I do have a fairly thick skin but this accusation just hit me where it hurt; thinking of myself as someone who really likes, and is interesting in, dogs means I found it especially hurtful.

OP’s posts: |
Nettleskeins Sat 06-Apr-19 14:01:02

I think if she has put them on a leash around you, she knows her dog was in the "wrong", uncontrolled (there of course no wrong dogs, only bad owners)

I would be really upset if someone accused me of kicking their dog. Last time I was told off by someone for not supervising my sister's dog properly, I was very very upset. You don't need to develop a thicker skin, your skin is just fine and it makes you a responsible thoughtful dog owner.

Veterinari Sat 06-Apr-19 14:02:25

I think you need to tell her very firmly that she needs to keep her dogs under control as their behaviour is dangerous to you and your dog. If she doesn’t want you to interact physically with them then She needs to ensure that you are never put in a position where you need to do so. The best way of preventing you from ‘kicking’ them is to keep them under control.

mrsjoyfulprizeforraffiawork Sat 06-Apr-19 14:08:57

I don't believe you would have kicked the other dog - I expect you were trying to fend it off with your leg and the owner misconstrued what was going on (from your account, it sounds as though she was still not very near so wouldn't have been able to see properly what happened). JoyfulDog was attacked by another dog last weekend (both were off lead and JoyfulDog had just been doing a breezy sociable hallo hallo meet with dog and its owners, a couple, and rolling on her back with happiness - suddenly the other dog (who was staring at her and if I'd been a few strides nearer would have made me catch JoyfulDog to be on the safe side) snapped at her and then they both went at it. Unfortunately the man got in my way or I'd have stopped it quickly (I grew up with a dog that got into fights, as many dogs did in the more distant past - it wasn't an unusual occurrence and no-one got angry with each other over it. I am used to wading in, with care, and grabbing collars). He was trying to secure his dog whilst fending JoyfulDog off with his leg (she couldn't hear me call as they were making such a racket). I could see that he was doing his best and not actually kicking her (though I was a bit fed up that I had not been able to get in to catch her myself as he was hogging the whole area and there was no way I could get past him to help). He did succeed in catching his dog and my dog then backed right off and rolled on her back so I could clip up her collar, back to being a very sunny girl again. She did not have a mark on her and, as I had been privy to witness her face on from the other dog's perspective, I already knew she had not tried to bite at all - it was just snapping in each other's faces and pushing at each other. The other couple apologised to me (which was nice as I knew they hadn't meant their dog to snap at mine). I was fine about it and we all went off happy, though I did hear them earnestly explaining to the dog that he had done the wrong thing and he mustn't do that (I think he must be a new rescue), which was rather sweet. JoyfulDog has not had a fight with another dog in the two years I've had her - she usually just moves away smartish if a dog is unfriendly and leaves them behind, but I think she had really not expected to be attacked and just went straight into defending herself without thinking (she used to be a stray on the streets).

Nettleskeins Sat 06-Apr-19 14:10:26

I stand to be corrected but my understanding is that labs tend not to bite but mouth, even when they are boisterous. Do you think this is one of the reasons she felt so angry with you, and couldn't understand that you considered them threatening? She is basically claiming that you have a dog that is growly and bitey and you have the problem not her. So I don't see much likelhood of her apologising for her dogs, sadly. I know a lot of lab owners who always come up with the he wouldn't hurt a fly approach, usually they don't but it doesn't mean that it doesn't feel uncomfortable for those of us who don't have labs.

FrozenMargarita17 Sat 06-Apr-19 14:16:40

My dd has been knocked over by a lab before in a park. We were about 10m away from the kids playpark. I was fucking furious and the owner didn't even try to walk over to where we were. Rude arsehole and badly behaved dog. I would have stuck my knee out to stop him if I had been able to so I wouldn't feel bad if you had in your situation.

missbattenburg Sat 06-Apr-19 14:20:13

On the previous fight occasion we both kind of accepted it, both agreed her dog made the first move but Battendog was definitely quick to respond so we chalked it up to half a dozen of one and six of the other.

My concerns were less that they were threatening me - from my own pov bouncy dogs are not as issue. I have no concerns at all, other than the irritation of a muddy blouse and scratches.

My concern was that if the dogs were to fight:

a) I do not have enough spare hands to separate them
b) I had been working so hard on Battendog's guarding that I didn't want anything to set him back
c) the other dog has had these health issues and I didn't want even the most daft of fights to injure him
d) it could create problems between the dogs in the future and so I could be facing potential fights every time they run over
e) Battendog was on a long lead that could easily get tangled or tied up between them
f) I had observed the lab react to an on lead dog a few days earlier. I think it was frustrated greeting because he was barking and lungy, but then turned and tried to bite his lead as if to get free. I did not want anything to happen that would make this reaction worse for him

I definitely think she doesn't see an issue with it. She commented the other week on a notice in the local paper asking for dogs to be kept under control and kind of shrugged it off as 'no one can control their dogs, can they?'. I think she sees the wide open countryside we live in and thinks it would be lovely if all the dogs could run free and play and interact with each other.

Maybe I just need to chalk this one up to experience and accept I am probably going to get the cold shoulder and a few dirty looks if we pass in the street now.

OP’s posts: |
CallMeRachel Sat 06-Apr-19 14:21:04

I think she has deliberately thrown an accusation at you in attempt to divert from the real issue, which was the fact her dogs were out of control and could have caused injury to you and your dog.

She is a dick.

Report her to the dog warden. She should have those dogs on leads if they have no recall.

Attack is the best form of defence so that's what she's doing.

If you kicked a dog you'd remember doing it. What a low life she is. I'm actually angry for you.

BollocksToBrexit Sat 06-Apr-19 14:23:23

Tell her that next time you'll kick her instead. I can't stand dog owners who don't control their dogs. My little dog was nearly killed by an out of control 'friendly' dog. Apparently her dog was gentle so mine must have started it. FFS, mine was on a lead and hers shot across a busy road to attack him and was still attacking once he was picked up. DH had to hold our injured dog up above his head until the fucking useless owner got hold of hers.

Minkies11 Sat 06-Apr-19 14:27:11

Really don't think you did anything wrong tbh - it just sounds like you were blocking the dog with your raised leg which is passive. Other owner must know she has recall problems with hers and is just being defensive. Think you reacted well especially as you had your own on the lead and there was no escalation between the two dogs. Ignore her!

TheInvestigator Sat 06-Apr-19 14:28:49

Who do you report out of control dogs too? Is there anyone you can report too Who would have a chat with her as a pre-emptive measure? Hers dogs are out of control and you've had several encounters... I know nothing about dog stuff but can you tell a dog warden or something and ask then to speak to her?
Or have a cease and desist letter sent to her regarding her dogs repeated out of control behaviour towards you?

Greyhound22 Sat 06-Apr-19 14:32:59

She's in the wrong completely and she's going to (quite rightly) have someone report her to the police for out of control dogs.

I love dogs more than people but I would have no qualms at all about kicking a dog to protect myself, DS or DDog. I absolutely hate being jumped up and a big dog like a lab could cause serious injury.

She is the dick and needs to control her dogs.

Also I will have a go at people that let their dogs gallop up to mine and harass him - he's elderly and going blind - I can see why you are upset but absolutely hold your head up you've done nothing wrong at all.

missyB1 Sat 06-Apr-19 14:37:04

Labs are too bloody big to be allowed to jump on people. I had a lab run into me by accident the other week when it was playing with my mini schnauzer, (she loves big dogs and they love her), I have a whacking big bruise which is all colours of the rainbow on my leg from that. My fault entirely though I should have got out the way. If that lab had jumped at me I'm pretty sure it would have knocked me over, I'm quite petite.

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