When other dogs play rough

(12 Posts)
Bramboo Mon 30-Mar-20 08:22:59

We have a 10 months old cockapoo. He's friendly and minds his own business on our walks but won't mind a little play as and when. He is doing well with his training.

Every now and again another dog will come and literally floor him playing rough, sometimes nipping, growling etc.

Recently a very large dog toppled my dog over when mine was walking on the lead.

The other dog kept dominating him and literally covering my dog with his body. The owner half-heartedly tried to call her dog back but it wouldn't listen.

This went on for a couple of minutes during which the other owner just sweetly called her dog but didn't interfere or do anything to actually remove her dog.

So my dog was on the lead and I was unable to walk on as this other dog was holding mine down..... after a couple of minutes of this, I had to ask the other dog wonder to please take her dog away and she got super stroppy telling me not to be rude..

What' the right and responsible thing in these situations and how do you manage them without creating a situation with the other dog owner? What do you say and how do you keep your dog safe, especially bearing social distancing in mind too? thanks

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Bramboo Mon 30-Mar-20 08:23:42

*literally covering my dog with his body and pinning him down

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Booboostwo Mon 30-Mar-20 08:31:52

It's really bad manners to allow an off lead dog to approach an on lead dog, she was being rude and ignorant. Given social distancing the woman was really BU. I do think you need to speak up and not be afraid of 'creating a situation'.

Having said that, playing rough is a normal part of dog play. It can sometimes go wrong but you can only judge that if you know dog body language.

Bramboo Mon 30-Mar-20 08:45:39

Thank you Booboostwo, that puts it into perspective. So, off lead expect a bit of rough and tumble, but on the lead it shouldn't really happen.

What are assertive but polite ways to ask other owners to stop their dog from going over board with the rough play, on or off lead?

The situation above left me confused and annoyed as we were minding our own business and I only asked her to take her dog away after she was pretty blase about it stopping hers from pinning mine down whilst on the lead.

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eatanazurecrayon Mon 30-Mar-20 08:45:47

Our dog is terrible for this playing rough behaviour. We pick and choose very carefully who he gets to play with - only dogs larger than him! And have whistle trained him for this exact reason. He is trying to play but is bigger than he should be for a whippet and very boisterous at 1! Hoping he settles down soon... irony is he's a big baby and if a larger dog did it to him he'd run between my legs. As previously said it is normal dog behaviour but little dogs can become very frightened but then some don't eg most jack russells hold their own 🤷🏽‍♀️ what I will say is that getting involved can make the dog think you are part of the game and accelerate things, this has been true for our dog. The quickest way to stop it for us is to blow the whistle and walk briskly in the opposite direction so the dog follows us. If we go towards him (which is your natural reaction) he thinks it's part of the game and it continues with you trying to catch him-he's a whippet so unlikely. A trainer had to tell us that though...sounds like the other dog needed some recall training.

eatanazurecrayon Mon 30-Mar-20 08:50:12

Oh and yes, as stated. Dogs on leads are considered unapproachable in dog etiquette and training. No longer than a 3 second sniff should be allowed. They feel trapped and vulnerable when an off lead dog approaches them while they are on a lead and this can lead to issues. If a dog that is frightening to mine approaches and won't leave I drop his lead so he can at least run away. On paths if you come across a dog on lead you should also put yours on their lead if they are likely to approach the other dog.

Bramboo Mon 30-Mar-20 08:56:05

* I drop his lead so he can at least run away. *

That is so clever and I wouldn't have thought of it, counter intuitive but great idea! Thank you!

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Booboostwo Mon 30-Mar-20 09:02:59

The problem is that dogs on leads can feel restricted and that can make them aggressive so what would have been a nice encounter off lead, becomes a problem on lead. Leads can also get tangled causing other problems. So the rule is that off lead dogs should be recalled when coming across on lead dogs.

Young dogs and playful dogs will play very rough, chasing each other, tumbling each other, loads of teeth on show, etc. It can look and sound scary if you are not used to it, but it is fun for the dogs. In general, play should be shared, with a shared amount of chasing/being chased before they swap roles and a shared amount of being on top/being underneath before they swap roles. That is the hallmark of healthy rough play.

Bramboo Mon 30-Mar-20 09:20:40

So the rule is that off lead dogs should be recalled when coming across on lead dogs.

What do we do if the off lead dog is not stopping, it's getting overboard and the other owner not able or willing to recall?

Letting go of the lead is definitely one options but what can i say without sounding 'rude', which apparently I did according to this other woman?

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BiteyShark Mon 30-Mar-20 09:38:56

I wouldn't worry about being rude tbh. If an owner is happy their offlead dog is playing/bouncing about on an onlead dog then in my books they forgo the right for pleasantries.

Floralnomad Mon 30-Mar-20 09:41:57

Don’t worry about sounding rude , just tell them to move their dog or you will be moving it with your foot if necessary . Also re the drop the lead , that is fine if you are in a park but don’t do it near traffic obviously .

HairyDogsOfThigh Mon 30-Mar-20 09:46:18

The other person is being rude by allowing their off lead dog to rush up to your on lead one. At that point, don't worry about 'being rude' back, remember, they started it.
I will tell owners very clearly to call their dogs back, often they reply 'oh, he's only playing' (normally means they have no recall and can't call their dog away). I reply, 'mine is scared of yours, please call it back'. I then step threateningly towards their on coming dog and either shout 'shoo' or block it's approach to my dog. If i can i will hurry on past, while still blocking the other dog and shouting 'shoo'. My dog's safety is more important than appearing 'nice'. The danger is, with allowing your dog to become scared on approaching dogs, is that they learn very quickly to appear threatening themselves (by barking aggressively) and then you're the one with the problem.

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