Playing Nice

 Suppose for a minute that it’s summertime and the living should be easy. You can walk your dog without falling on ice or trudging through snow. Perhaps you’re planning to visit a dog park or some other public place to enjoy the warm weather and the great outdoors. You appreciate the all-important human-animal bond and are a responsible pet owner. But what happens if you encounter an aggressive dog, or if your own dog is aggressive? It’s a serious consideration. Avoiding such situations is optimum. Walking your dog at a time when there is less dog traffic. Staying away from areas where dogs are running off leash is also important if you suspect aggressive dogs will be there or if your pet is dog aggressive.

Yes, you want to have a peaceful walk but what can you do to cushion your dog against attacks? You can train certain behaviours that will be invaluable on a walk. Teaching your dog to stay behind you as you deal with the difficult situation. She adds that some people carry an animal-deterrent spray, while other owners carry gadgets in case they need to shield their dog from another dog.   One failsafe tactic is to hold your small dog while passing the larger unfamiliar dogs.

Many people enjoy dog parks, but preparation is essential. I suggest that owners go to the dog park, without their dog, at various times of day to see who’s there and how the dogs owners interact. Do the owners make sure their dog isn’t causing problems? Is there a dog park bully? If you have a small dog, is he likely to be injured by roughhousing larger dogs? Taking toys to  the park might not be a good idea because they can precipitate a fight. Children should not be inside the dog park enclosure because the park is for dogs, not children.

Again I tell you that all dogs need obedience classes and you must make the time to practice obedience commands at home every day.  Socialize  your dog when it is a pup and continue even as an adult, it will help stop or at least slow down the aggressive behaviour in your dog.