So angry right now. other dog walkers instigating and blaming me

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So angry right now. other dog walkers instigating and blaming me

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Old 01-14-2018, 05:14 PM
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So angry right now. other dog walkers instigating and blaming me

I finally have Shamas to the point where we can walk in our area without him worrying about other dogs and becoming defensive. He even greeted one the other day. So tonight really angers me.

I was walking our usual route, and saw another dog coming: a huge shaggy thing, on a retractable leash. I decided to do "the safe thing" and stopped before the intersection, to give them a chance to go around us. Shamas was leaning towards the dog, but not growling, or showing any other signs of aggression.

This woman, seeing that we were there, and I had stopped with my dog, walked her gigantic dog directly up to him, then screamed at me, accusing me of "playing games" when shamas went defensive in the face of a dog twice his size. She could have crossed the street, even started too..then changed her mind and walked our way instead. She didn't ask if he was dog friendly. Didn't give me a chance to warn her off. Just let her giant on a retractable lead walk right up to my dog, and screamed at us when he got scared and growled a warning. And her dog was growling and harder to handle than Shamas was-he turned away when I told him to!

Shamas released bowels directly after the dog left, telling me the whole thing stressed him out hugely....and we had to bring him home. Now I have to keep him leashed because he's redirecting his frustration on the cats. We're going to take him to Chapters shortly, but I suspect his usual Petsmart visit is out, as he's just had a run-in and is feeling frustrated and touchy.


Now I'm going to have to go back a few steps in his socialising, and try to once again teach him that dogs aren't all threats. He's been doing SO WELL lately
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Old 01-14-2018, 05:29 PM
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I'm sorry that was so stressful for you both. I learned the hard way with my last dog who could be dog aggressive that people who have friendly dogs assume everyone else does too and just don't pay attention and let their dogs wander around everywhere.
I learned to either cross the street myself or scream out well in advance "my dog's NOT friendly!!!" Please keep away!!!" And I'd put him against the nearest wall and physically block him from another dog with my own body. I'd also never put him in a sit as that gave him time to plan and spring and pin the other dog by the throat. I kept moving fast reminding him to heel the whole time of we had to pass close. But he'd spring and pin the dog with no warning. He'd wag his tail, lean into pulling to meet the dog, brief sniff, tail wagging and spring and pin it. Dog could be twice his size and he was seventy pounds or more.
He never bothered my cats though.
With my current friendly dog, if I see a dog sit and wait as I'm approaching I'll assume it's friendly and the owner wants to let them meet. I'll still try to ask though.
But every dog is different. She should have asked before letting them sniff or make any contact.
Can you play a fun game with him and try to put it behind you to help distract him and get him in a better space quicker?
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Old 01-14-2018, 07:43 PM
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I know that I'll never again give the other owner the courtesy of allowing them space.

I might have had time to get around the corner and give him room to flee, had we run, but I had the kids with me and didn't know if we'd make it. I know that Shamas can't handle a dog walking right up to him, and normally I put a snowbank or cross the street. I'm trying to tteach Heel now, with difficulty. We're working mainly in Chapters, and Petsmart, as when he hits the street it's all I can do to stay on my feet, let alone take time to train.


Thank you for your insight, I'll keep it in mind as weather clears up and allows me to take Shamas out more. I'm still angry about her accusation, but at least I don't feel as much like Shmas will be set back. He did great training at Chapters
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Old 01-14-2018, 09:19 PM
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So sorry that you and Shamas had that experience @sassymomma!
Don't beat yourself up. The lady was rude and irresponsible in letting her dog approach that way. And sometimes things just happen too quick!
I'm really glad your chapters visit was much more pleasant!

I've come to the realization I should just expect everyone I don't know to let their dogs rush mine (same with being pushy about petting) which means I've become way more proactive when out. I avoid many places where I could potentially be trapped by people and dogs approaching. I often just change direction when I'm not headed anywhere specific. If I need to keep going and have space, I'll bubble out giving a lot of room while I pass and keep going. If I don't have a lot of space, I try to move off to the side and might ask for a sit like you did. For whatever reason, some people see that as an invitation when it's not, so I am prepared with a ''No, but thanks'' (much more and people what to start a conversation) paired with hand up in a stop signal. I tend to keep eye contact with my dog(s), not the person (eye contact with the person seems to also often be taken invitation). If they keep coming or try to start a conversation, I'll repeat ''no thanks'' and often walk away. I also teach my dogs to walk on both sides as well as switch so that I can have myself between them and the person/dog. Mine are smaller so I will go so far as to pick up or cue (my terriers) to jump into my arms so I can carry them if needed to get by or away.

Last edited by kmes; 01-14-2018 at 10:28 PM.
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Old 01-14-2018, 10:21 PM
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Wow, that woman sounds like a piece of work! I'm sorry she was so rude to you.

Carly loves other dogs and always wants to play, but since I never know which dogs are friendly or not, I usually am proactive and move to the street from the sidewalk when a person and their dog is coming my way. If their dog is inching toward us even so (Carly will happily greet any of them if I let her) I might ask if the dog is friendly and if she can say hello. If my kids are with me (usually it's my 4 y/o on his scooter) I will have him either stay on the sidewalk or move to the curb while I cross the street. So far it's worked well. And fortunately I haven't encountered any rude owners. Hopefully you won't see that woman and her dog again!
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:22 AM
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I have a dog lead from Friendly Dog Collars which is red and says caution. This might be useful for you? I feel like I'm labelling the dog, so it's just as well he can't read, and it's worth it for the peace. You can also get vests, as well as other things like blind dog etc. Since I've had it for my reactive dog no one has approached, and I don't need to say anything. It's an Australian company but I'm sure they'd post.


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Old 01-15-2018, 07:43 AM
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I would be p!$$# ! Awhile back we went walking on a trail with both our dogs leashed. A couple with 2 unleashed dogs came walking toward us. We stopped to give them time to leash up before getting too close. They hollered " its ok theyre friendly " we responded ours are not. They did not leash theyre dogs and then proceeded to lecture us about socialization when one of the dogs rudely ran up and got in our labs face and promply got snapped at by our lab.
With some people its always someone elses fault......aggravating!!
What kind of games was the other person accusing yall of playing?? I put my dogs in a sit and let other people go past us with theyre dogs all the time as a training exercise. I dont even see how that can be misconstrued as " playing games " ......
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Old 01-15-2018, 11:26 AM
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I don't know what kind of game she thought I was playing? She just yelled at me for "playing games" I have to admit, I yelled back, I said "I wasn't playing any games, My dog didn't do anything until yours walked right up to him."

Based on what Shadowmom said, perhaps she thought I was indicating Shamas' friendliness by stopping him instead of trying to give the other owner plenty of space to pass?. But based on what I hear from neighbours, she has let her dog walk right up onto Chance's lawn and he was in a fight there too.(Chance is NOT dog friendly, and the whole neighbourhood knows it) So clearly she either doesn't read cues, or doesn't care and just blames other owners when she doesn't control her own dog. It seems like he's a big, in your face friendly type, and has no boundaries. She could have crossed the street, that was the idea. She started to then walked right to us. Her dog growled first, and she needed TWO hands to grab him. I had Shamas under control and walking away with a couple of light tugs.

When I got Shamas, I made him a vest, painted TRAINING on it in bold lettering; he's since outgrown that one. I might paint his current coat too. I had wanted to keep it nice.....
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Old 01-15-2018, 02:35 PM
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That's really annoying @sassymomma. Some people are just clueless.

I've been fortunate that both my guys had a good start in life, so are pretty easy going, and I STILL don't let them say hello to dogs on leash. People give me the stink eye in my neighborhood, because they are clearly slowing down to let our dogs meet, and I just give them a "Morning" and keep on walking. I don't know you or your dog, and I don't need my dogs thinking we say hello to everyone.

I don't know why people insist dog that don't appreciate being bum-rushed haven't been socialized. My Border Collie is perfectly sociable, great canine skills. If a dog runs up and jumps on her, she's going to be pretty irritated. This is my favourite piece of literature about the " he just wants to say hi" folks:
https://suzanneclothier.com/article/just-wants-say-hi/
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Old 01-15-2018, 07:12 PM
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Such a great article!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shandula View Post
That's really annoying @sassymomma. Some people are just clueless.

I've been fortunate that both my guys had a good start in life, so are pretty easy going, and I STILL don't let them say hello to dogs on leash. People give me the stink eye in my neighborhood, because they are clearly slowing down to let our dogs meet, and I just give them a "Morning" and keep on walking. I don't know you or your dog, and I don't need my dogs thinking we say hello to everyone.

I don't know why people insist dog that don't appreciate being bum-rushed haven't been socialized. My Border Collie is perfectly sociable, great canine skills. If a dog runs up and jumps on her, she's going to be pretty irritated. This is my favourite piece of literature about the " he just wants to say hi" folks:
https://suzanneclothier.com/article/just-wants-say-hi/
I love how that article puts the dog behavior into human situations to illustrate how understandable their responses are int he situations wherein they are labelled "aggressive"

When I got Shamas, I first noticed that he was "aggressive" towards other dogs. But having trained an "aggressive" dog and done extensive research in the treatment of such, I knew that there are many causes for such behavior. In Shamas case, it's low confidence, and fear of other dogs. He's been doing very well since I determined the root cause, and making great improvenment. We took to socialising him at Petsmart, where most of the dogs are also well socialised, and he has plenty of escape routes, and now he often happily meets other dogs of his own choice while at pet stores. I had also reached the point on the street where he would calmly walk by another dog across the street.

Today he pulled towards a dog, and growled a bit...so I walked him away, and determined that his new current threshold is half a block. So it's from here that we start again.
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