Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

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Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by b_phippsy on Thu Feb 15 2018, 11:27

Hi Everyone,

Looking for some advice, my staffy Harley can be lead agressive with certain dogs coming up to him. He has never bitten but gets tense and does growl. The problem I'm having is owners off dogs offlead can anyone relate? Yesterday had a big argument with another dog walker as he let his Boston terrier and jack russel run over to mine after I called to him to put his dog on a lead as mine can be picky.
Cut a long story short he was very agressive ( so much harley started to react and growled at him) he shouted that his were good as gold and that I should muzzel my dangerous dog and that he was going to report me and my partner. (Lord know what for as we had done nothing wrong) I said to the owner that he should be more respectful and that my dog wasn't so bad but his dog might run into a very reactive dog one day and get hurt! What really annoys me though is the fact that he could see me trying to keep harley to heel and shoveling treats into his mouth to keep his concentration on me. He still insisted on letting them come over! Can someone clear this up for me and say If I was in the right or not. I don't want to mussel him because I don't feel he's at that stage and I want him to still defend himself.
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by Paris1990 on Thu Feb 15 2018, 12:47

Hello Smile

In my personal opinion you have done absolutely nothing wrong and have nothing to worry about, you had Harley on the lead and shouted over to the other owner. There are a lot of idiot owners like this and think if there dog is good nothing bad will happen about and how much I hate other dogs being hurt these are the type of owners who's dogs are going to get hurt like you said another dog might be a lot more reactive than Harley. My hank is a star with other dogs but as soon as I see another dog he gets put straight on the lead as I know he will run up to them to say hi and the other dog might not like that, its all about being a responsible dog owner which that other guy is not.

I don't think you would need a muzzle with him either, he was only saying I don't like you leave me alone.

Does Harley react this way when he just walks past another dog or is only when they get up in his face? do you reward him if he walks past another dog nice and do you try get in to interact with other dogs?
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by LizP on Thu Feb 15 2018, 13:37

First things first, I'm 99% sure he won't report you, people like that are all big words and no action. And if, just supposing, that he does, then there is absolutely no case for you to answer.

For the future, I would strongly advise you not to get into discussions of any sort with people like this. They will never, ever listen to you and the only result will be you getting insulted. I've never heard of someone like this saying 'oh yes, I see what you mean, maybe I misjudged the situation'. It doesn't happen.

Instead, I'd work on avoidance. Are there places you can walk that are less frequented, or times that are quieter? Failing that, are there places that have space you can move into, so that you can take Harley away from other dogs? It's worth teaching him a 'this way!!!' command, which means 'come with me for something fun and nice' (a favourite toy, a treat, a cuddle). As always, you teach it in easy situations first, then go into the big wide world.

Armed with a good 'this way', your other option is to just turn round. It's one we don't think of often enough, but instead of just getting closer and closer, it's perfectly ok to call 'this way!' and run off in the opposite direction (run because it's fun).

If you do have a dog that keeps on coming, one good tip is to throw a handful of treats towards it. That stops a lot of dogs! It then gives you more time to look for a safe place for you to go.

You might gather from this that I've 'been there done that'! Managing these situations is possible, but you need to have plans ready. And, as I say, avoiding those places where you are likely to meet Mr Oh So Reasonable is often the best way.


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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by b_phippsy on Thu Feb 15 2018, 13:37

He's quite sociable offlead onlead he is picky with bigger dogs and gets tense if they run up to him. He also stops and stares and refuses to budge if a dog is coming towards him. If we go past dogs on leads he generally looks up at us for praise and reward with treats of ball to stop him fixating
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by Mistys Mum on Thu Feb 15 2018, 14:21

You are in the right. Your Dog was on lead and the owner should not have allowed them to run up to an on lead dog. It's simple dog owner etiquette but it's surprising the amount of people who a, don't care and b have absolutely no control over their dogs. I keep misty on a long line because she would be one of those dogs who runs up to other dogs who are on lead.

Like Liz said don't give people like that any time to argue with you. Confrontations are never nice but you were in the right. Harley didn't actually do anything so don't worry.

So many dog owners will never ever put their dog on a lead even when they have zero control it's so frustrating!


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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by dizzy on Thu Feb 15 2018, 17:28

I agree with all that's been said. People will never admit to being in the wrong, but those who let their dogs run straight up to on-lead dogs are in the wrong. It's happened to me countless times and their dogs are sometimes acting aggressively, but these sort of dog owners never take responsibility for their dogs. It's maddening!
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by LizP on Thu Feb 15 2018, 17:41

It sounds like you maybe need to catch him a bit earlier, the first tension but before the fix and stare. I know it might not seem like it but if you keep a really close watch, the moment you see another dog that you think from experience he might react to you should be able to catch than initial stiffen. For me, even though he's being a good boy otherwise, with those known trigger types it's better to go into play mode and call him away before he locks. It can be tempting to just see if he'll be ok but with off lead dogs, those out of your control, I personally think you're better playing safe. It's also much better learning for him, knowing that he can move away from another dog he feels to be threatening, and going towards something fun instead.


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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by gillybrent on Thu Feb 15 2018, 17:50

I  agree with Liz - these people will never listen.

Avoidance is the key. Never think it's wrong to cross the road or turn the other way if you feel your dog may react. It isn't fair on your dog to allow confrontation.

Teaching "watch me" or "this way" are both good ways out of potentially nasty situations - but sometimes it isn't possible to avoid - in that case stay calm, stay polite & try your damndest to keep the situation calm. If your dog 'goes' then you've lost  it - all you can do is keep control & try to make space between yours & theirs'!

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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by Jenc on Fri Feb 16 2018, 20:08

I have the same problem with off lead dogs getting in Katy's face & had the dangerous dog routine thrown at me. When I see any dog approaching from a distance, Katy goes on lead. On advice from a dog trainer friend I now have the yellow nervous badges on her harness so if she does react I have given them fair warning! Mind you some still let their dogs get in her face! Rolling Eyes



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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by b_phippsy on Wed Feb 21 2018, 11:00

Thank you all for your helpful advice! I will indeed try and catch him before he fixates too much and I will also give the patches on the harness a go! It's funny people see me walking down the street with harley trotting next to me looking up and they always come out will the same line "can you teach mine to do that" but it's these types that let their dogs run up to mine when he's perfectly under my control it's so annoying! But oh well I will just keep doing what I'm doing and reward him lots :-).
Also liz Harley is never off lead he has a long lead which allows him to socialise with dogs if we are in the field. I would say he's much better this way as I can still control if anything kicks off but in general he is quite good.
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by doiti on Thu Apr 05 2018, 11:40

In a court of law situation blame would be placed with the owner of the two dogs which were off lead. He has a responsibility to keep his dogs under control i.e. if they can not be recalled successfully then they should be on leads around other dogs.
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by Haizum74 on Fri May 04 2018, 20:53

As Nita has got older, she has taken a dislike to certain dogs, usually black labs. However, when in the park with her doggy friends, if I see someone approach with a dog and they get within 50m I always put Nita on lead. Mainly because of her being a staffy and of course if another dog has a pop at a staffy and they retaliate, it's always the staffies fault.

So, my friend took Nita out one evening around the block where I live (a small leafy cul-de-sac type of area), when I was working and she knows to keep her on lead unless going across the fields where she can see if a dog is approaching and put Nita back on. A chap has a lab off lead heading towards her and Nita.
She asks said chap to call his dog back which was approaching Nita and he replied with 'Oh she is ok, she just wants to play' to which her reply was 'Well, mine doesn't really like labs so please can you recall her'.

Next thing, the lab comes bounding towards Nita and launches at her (so much for wanting to play) and all hell breaks lose. I had explained to my friend that if she is on lead and a dog has a go to drop the lead so Nita can defend herself better and get into a position to do so rather than pulling on the lead and Nita not being able to protect herself. Suffice to say she did this and Nita latched on to its neck and pinned it at which point the guy had caught up and my friend was able to get Nita to release and the chap got hold of his dog.
Thankfully the guy apologised profusely and after my friend checked his dog, there was nothing more than a load of dog slather on its neck.

When she told me the story I wasn't exactly pleased that it had got to this stage however reflecting back I have just got to the point now that no matter what you say to people, they still won't listen and think their dog is going to be fine so I am now in the frame of mind that if I have told you, warned you and asked you yet they still insist then so be it.

As long as Nita is on a lead and the other dog isn't, to hell with what she does to protect herself. And yes, while folk will disagree, it is not my responsibility to teach other dog owners how to behave and how to keep their dog on a lead when approaching another.
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Re: Advice.. What's the deal with offlead dogs running up to mine

Post by gillybrent on Sat May 05 2018, 07:33

All you can do is try your best - after that, the ball's in the other owner's court & you can only try to contain the situation!

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