UK Pet Forums Forum banner
1 - 20 of 66 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, after reading and posting on numerous threads about on lead/off lead I thought I would just ask your opinion about my on lead/off lead behaviour.

This is how Sully behaves off lead - he will run a fair distance to go see another dog (bear on mind he's a Shih Tzu so a fair distance for him isn't much).

He will always approach slowly and even lay down.

If the dog isn't interested he will back off.

Once they start playing Sully has no recall.

He over stays his welcome but we are always there to clip him up when the other dog has had enough.

It seems alot of people on this forum don't like other dogs approaching at all, but if Sully had constantly been on lead because he approaches other dogs he would of missed out on so many great experiences, the idea of him always being on lead makes me feel sad.

Imagine Sully approached you and your dog and did all of the above, what would your reaction be?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,263 Posts
Hello,

It depends on experiences TBH. Some dog owners may have had bad experiences by were their dogs may have been attacked by a dog off a lead or maybe their dog has done something similar.

I have a Westie and a Bichon that I let off the lead. The Westie is fantastic off the lead. Doesn't approach other dogs and stays very close to myself, my partner or my mum. She has a ball and she is in her own little world. Very good on recall too. We let her off the lead at around 16 weeks old. Buddy my Bichon however is so friendly with other dogs and people. His tail wags and he does his little dance, has a sniff of other dogs. Many males try and dominate him and try to hump the poor soul. He is good on recall too. If other walkers or the public don't like his attention, we put him on a lead until the coast is clear.

In terms of Sully. I personally don't mind if another dog approached mine. The Westie doesn't mind so much. She likes being chased if the dog is of a similar size. If it is a large breed of dog she runs off and pines and hides behind us. Small Dog Syndrome we think. It really is down to how much you trust your judgment and also how much you trust your dog. If your dog is harmless and easy going, I shouldn't think many owners would be too cautious if he approached them and their dogs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,888 Posts
I think it's unacceptable personally, for a variety of reasons, not least of which being the safety of your dog, you wouldn't trust your child round just anybody's house so why would you trust every other dog to be kind to yours? If your dog approached and was attacked that would be entirely your fault, and you'd have to live with the repercussions from that whether they be physically or mentally with Sully.

I personally don't mind dogs coming up to mine, but I do not let mine approach others. Dogs can be old, deaf, blind, injured and just recovering, anxious, fearful, aggressive, reactive - there's a host of unknowns with every dog you come across. When you put your dog back on lead and plenty of people thank you for doing so because their dog has one of the above problems you come to appreciate the harm that a dog running up to another can do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,158 Posts
Whether the dog is on or offlead, I think it's rude and irresponsible to let your dog greet someone else's dog without their permission.

I've always asked permission and Charlie is a happy well socialised dog with loads of friends.

There's no excuse in my opinion - dogs can be exercised and socialised without negatively affecting others. Everyone makes mistakes and goes through training issues etc. but it's the owners who have a blasé attitude towards it that upsets me: negatively affecting other people for your own advantage is wrong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,369 Posts
If an off-lead dog approaches mine politely while they are also off-lead I don't mind at all. And if my dogs were playing happily with another dog and the owner coudn't call their dog away, that isn't inconveniencing me just the owner who is stood there calling with the dog ignoring them :lol: Unless we are trying to leave the area of course but then I just get mine back to me and sitting and the other dog generally looses interest at that point!

If mine are on-lead even a polite, playful approach can be a pain in the bum because mine will then want to play and if you have two dogs on leads wanting to play you end up in all kinds of knots.

I would work very very hard on not allowing him to approach other dogs unless you say so - if he is going up to on-lead dogs, even politely, he could be walking up to a dog aggressive dog.

As soon as another dog appears, before he has chance to run off, produce some very tastey treats and get Sully sitting in front of you to earn those treats, decide if you are going to allow him to approach the dog. If so give a treat and tell him to go and say hello - off he pops. If you don't want him to say hello to that dog, clip a lead on so he doesn't get chance to get it wrong and as long as he stays watching you and ignoring the other dog keep giving him tastey treats.

If calling him while he is playing doesn't work, don't do it - you will just be teaching him to ignore you when there's something more exciting happening, approach, catch, lead up and walk away and give lots of praise and tastey treats once he has come away with you. When he starts to look to you approaching, expecting treats and breaking off play really praise him and reward loads and maybe even let him go back and play for a bit longer! Eventually you can build up to putting a "come away" command in but don't start using a command at first unless the action you want it to illicit eventually is actually happening! :blink:

Personally though, as long as a dog doesn't come up and attack mine or scarre them by being really over-boistrous I don't mind how much it ignores it's owner - but my dogs aren't nervous or aggressive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,066 Posts
Do you mean Sully lays down before approching and doesnt bowl into the dog?
If so then in my case:

Dog 1 - would have no interest in Sully whatsoever

Dog 2 - Now she can be lead reactive but she is not dog agressive so once she has met she is fine with other dogs

Dog 3 - The daft young dog! he would be delighted to have a playmate

So I would be fine with Sully. My only problem is playful dogs that try to bowl into mine that really upsets nervous Dog 2. Aggressive dogs that attack mine - obviously not happy with that!! Owners who are not even watching what their dogs are doing don`t come over to make sure their dog is not bothering mine.

I have every sympathy with the breathless owner galloping after their dog who has suddenly lost all recall, been there myself!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think it's unacceptable personally, for a variety of reasons, not least of which being the safety of your dog, you wouldn't trust your child round just anybody's house so why would you trust every other dog to be kind to yours? If your dog approached and was attacked that would be entirely your fault, and you'd have to live with the repercussions from that whether they be physically or mentally with Sully.

I personally don't mind dogs coming up to mine, but I do not let mine approach others. Dogs can be old, deaf, blind, injured and just recovering, anxious, fearful, aggressive, reactive - there's a host of unknowns with every dog you come across. When you put your dog back on lead and plenty of people thank you for doing so because their dog has one of the above problems you come to appreciate the harm that a dog running up to another can do.
Maybe I need to clarify, Sully doesn't 'run' up to other dogs, he approaches slowly and carefully and even lays down, he has never scared another dog. We have come across a very small and timid yorkie that now loves to play with Sully because of how well Sully behaved on their first few meetings.

As for Sully being attacked by another dog we are always closer to Sully than he is to the other dog (it's not hard to keep up with him), like I said Sully approaches slowly and by that I mean he stops and either sits or lays down at least a few feet away.

Yes we could approach on lead but after having 3 separate large dogs paw and sniff at him (other dogs seem to take advantage of him being on lead) he is much calmer and better behaved when the meetings happen off lead.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Do you mean Sully lays down before approching and doesnt bowl into the dog?
If so then in my case:

Dog 1 - would have no interest in Sully whatsoever

Dog 2 - Now she can be lead reactive but she is not dog agressive so once she has met she is fine with other dogs

Dog 3 - The daft young dog! he would be delighted to have a playmate

So I would be fine with Sully. My only problem is playful dogs that try to bowl into mine that really upsets nervous Dog 2. Aggressive dogs that attack mine - obviously not happy with that!! Owners who are not even watching what their dogs are doing don`t come over to make sure their dog is not bothering mine.

I have every sympathy with the breathless owner galloping after their dog who has suddenly lost all recall, been there myself!
Yes Sully lays down before getting to the dog and my OH and I are always only just a few steps behind.
 

·
Team Ginger!
Joined
·
10,710 Posts
It is just really difficult- I do not think off lead dogs should approach those on lead at all without permission.... the group of dogs i walk with would react like this

1) would be petrified of a dog approaching - does not really matter what speed- she is a scardey cat- and maybe send in
2) who may bark react to a strange dog
3) probably be screaming in over excitement
4) happliy play with said dog unless the other dogs owners approached- not into human strangers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,888 Posts
Yes Sully lays down before getting to the dog and my OH and I are always only just a few steps behind.
Forgive me if I'm wrong but isn't Sully still just a little pup? If so when she hits the teenage years you may find it's not just a small distance she's running but the whole length of a park, and then you have no control, and then problems occur. Your dog could run up to an off lead dog 20 metres away who grabs him and bites down, then it's not so harmless and you'd probably end up blaming the other dog, but yours is also to blame for approaching. As a general rule I think you shouldn't let any dog approach any unknown dog. There's no need to take the risk, and if you just have a quick chat with the owners and see first then this minimises any risk and it's not really much of an inconvenience, is it? By letting your dog practice the behaviour of approaching any dog it feels like this can cause problems with training and also to him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If an off-lead dog approaches mine politely while they are also off-lead I don't mind at all. And if my dogs were playing happily with another dog and the owner coudn't call their dog away, that isn't inconveniencing me just the owner who is stood there calling with the dog ignoring them :lol: Unless we are trying to leave the area of course but then I just get mine back to me and sitting and the other dog generally looses interest at that point!

If mine are on-lead even a polite, playful approach can be a pain in the bum because mine will then want to play and if you have two dogs on leads wanting to play you end up in all kinds of knots.

I would work very very hard on not allowing him to approach other dogs unless you say so - if he is going up to on-lead dogs, even politely, he could be walking up to a dog aggressive dog.

As soon as another dog appears, before he has chance to run off, produce some very tastey treats and get Sully sitting in front of you to earn those treats, decide if you are going to allow him to approach the dog. If so give a treat and tell him to go and say hello - off he pops. If you don't want him to say hello to that dog, clip a lead on so he doesn't get chance to get it wrong and as long as he stays watching you and ignoring the other dog keep giving him tastey treats.

If calling him while he is playing doesn't work, don't do it - you will just be teaching him to ignore you when there's something more exciting happening, approach, catch, lead up and walk away and give lots of praise and tastey treats once he has come away with you. When he starts to look to you approaching, expecting treats and breaking off play really praise him and reward loads and maybe even let him go back and play for a bit longer! Eventually you can build up to putting a "come away" command in but don't start using a command at first unless the action you want it to illicit eventually is actually happening! :blink:

Personally though, as long as a dog doesn't come up and attack mine or scarre them by being really over-boistrous I don't mind how much it ignores it's owner - but my dogs aren't nervous or aggressive.
Sully has gotten much better at approaching other dogs, he used to run for every one he saw but they now have to be fairly close before the temptation gets too much, he never gets the opportunity to run up to an on lead dog, he will recall on occasion but the opportunity to play with another playful dog is more appealing to him than any treats!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Forgive me if I'm wrong but isn't Sully still just a little pup? If so when she hits the teenage years you may find it's not just a small distance she's running but the whole length of a park, and then you have no control, and then problems occur. Your dog could run up to an off lead dog 20 metres away who grabs him and bites down, then it's not so harmless and you'd probably end up blaming the other dog, but yours is also to blame for approaching. As a general rule I think you shouldn't let any dog approach any unknown dog. There's no need to take the risk, and if you just have a quick chat with the owners and see first then this minimises any risk and it's not really much of an inconvenience, is it? By letting your dog practice the behaviour of approaching any dog it feels like this can cause problems with training and also to him.
Sully is almost 11 months and yes he could outrun us if he wanted but like I keep saying he approaches slowly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It is just really difficult- I do not think off lead dogs should approach those on lead at all without permission.... the group of dogs i walk with would react like this

1) would be petrified of a dog approaching - does not really matter what speed- she is a scardey cat- and maybe send in
2) who may bark react to a strange dog
3) probably be screaming in over excitement
4) happliy play with said dog unless the other dogs owners approached- not into human strangers.
Sully is never allowed to approach on lead dogs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,311 Posts
I just use the rule: if the other dog is on a lead then mine go on a lead.

If all dogs are off lead then I personally don't see a problem.

Mine have met and dealt with more dogs than I care to remember that have come up to us and not once have they had a bad reaction, my first dog did and nearly had his throat ripped out which is what brought me here int he first place. Many months of training and none of mine have issues with dogs approaching no matter what the manner is. If they want to play then I give mine a break from training or working to go play and run around with the other dog/s. If they are aggressive them mine have the ability to run off and defend themselves - they won't catch Lucy in a month of sundays, Dillon will put them in their place very quickly if they get a bit over the top but can play with the best of them and Kes isn't fussed about other dogs and ignores them if they get boisterous and waits for Dillon to come and defend him.

If an owner apologises for their dog running over then it usually leads to a conversation and I'll happily allow them to call their dog away and then send it back to play as a bit of training and reward. I'd rather increase the chances of other dogs being sociable with other dogs than be unsociable and the only way to do that is let them meet and play with each other.
I've taken on unsociable dogs as rescues and fosters as the only way they can become sociable is to socialise. What's the point in keeping an unsociable dog away from other dogs, when is it going to get the chance to learn to be with other dogs and learn if it is never allowed to be near them? Makes no sense to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,369 Posts
Sully has gotten much better at approaching other dogs, he used to run for every one he saw but they now have to be fairly close before the temptation gets too much, he never gets the opportunity to run up to an on lead dog, he will recall on occasion but the opportunity to play with another playful dog is more appealing to him than any treats!
I just think it is a good idea to put approaching a dog on command and have described a potential method to help you do that. If he is ignoring your recall for the excitement of a dog he could easily decide to ignore it in a situation where he could put himself in danger. Get him focussed on you BEFORE the temptation to run happens then give him permission to go BEFORE he decides to go himself (if it is a friendly, off-lead dog - if not prevent him running up by putting a lead on). Get yourself back in control.

Most off-lead dogs will be fine with a quiet approach - however you never know if you are going to meet a numpty with a DA dog off-lead so you need to be able to keep your dog from greating others without your permission.

Using treats isn't about bribing the dog to behave (i.e. in direct competition with a dog to play with)- get the behaviour you want through management (act before the other dog is so close that he is too destracted to comply) and make that behaviour rewarding using treats or a toy etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I just use the rule: if the other dog is on a lead then mine go on a lead.

If all dogs are off lead then I personally don't see a problem.

Mine have met and dealt with more dogs than I care to remember that have come up to us and not once have they had a bad reaction, my first dog did and nearly had his throat ripped out which is what brought me here int he first place. Many months of training and none of mine have issues with dogs approaching no matter what the manner is. If they want to play then I give mine a break from training or working to go play and run around with the other dog/s. If they are aggressive them mine have the ability to run off and defend themselves - they won't catch Lucy in a month of sundays, Dillon will put them in their place very quickly if they get a bit over the top but can play with the best of them and Kes isn't fussed about other dogs and ignores them if they get boisterous and waits for Dillon to come and defend him.

If an owner apologises for their dog running over then it usually leads to a conversation and I'll happily allow them to call their dog away and then send it back to play as a bit of training and reward. I'd rather increase the chances of other dogs being sociable with other dogs than be unsociable and the only way to do that is let them meet and play with each other.
I've taken on unsociable dogs as rescues and fosters as the only way they can become sociable is to socialise. What's the point in keeping an unsociable dog away from other dogs, when is it going to get the chance to learn to be with other dogs and learn if it is never allowed to be near them? Makes no sense to me.
Thank you! The more Sully socializes with other dogs the less he is obsessed with them, after one good play he will happily walk past other dogs without batting an eye, but when we constantly kept Sully on lead he was obsessed with getting to other dogs, now he is allowed off lead he can play with one dog and not be bothered by the next few he sees, his recall is even improving, keeping Sully on lead fed his obsession but now he's been more socialized he is improving.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,436 Posts
I don't have a problem if mine are off the lead, as long as the approaching dog doesn't bother them. The last time an off lead dog approached us, it kept trying to mount the 9 year old lab I was walking - as it was a huge mastiff of some sort yes I had an issue with that. When I asked the owner to put him back on lead apparently it was my fault because I was walking too fast for him to catch up and for bringing a bitch in season to the park! Failed to notice the penis I guess...

So if your Sully approached us, my dogs said 'no thanks' and your dog accepted that, no issue. One thing I won't do though, is wait for owners to catch us up. So if your Sully is having fun just walking along with my dogs and you're still halfway across the field I'm afraid you'd have to run...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,185 Posts
So what you are saying is that you do not have sufficient control over your dog when it starts to interact with other dogs, ie you have NO recall.

If you believe that this level of "control" is acceptable, you will also have to accept the consequences which may occur.

If you are happy that the consequences may be harm to your dog. Fine.

If you are happy that your dog could cause harm to another dog and/or owner. Fine.

Unfortunately of course it will not be only you and your dog that have to pay (in terms of being prosecuted/sued) but the person/dog to whom you have caused harm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I just think it is a good idea to put approaching a dog on command and have described a potential method to help you do that. If he is ignoring your recall for the excitement of a dog he could easily decide to ignore it in a situation where he could put himself in danger. Get him focussed on you BEFORE the temptation to run happens then give him permission to go BEFORE he decides to go himself (if it is a friendly, off-lead dog - if not prevent him running up by putting a lead on). Get yourself back in control.

Most off-lead dogs will be fine with a quiet approach - however you never know if you are going to meet a numpty with a DA dog off-lead so you need to be able to keep your dog from greating others without your permission.

Using treats isn't about bribing the dog to behave (i.e. in direct competition with a dog to play with)- get the behaviour you want through management (act before the other dog is so close that he is too destracted to comply) and make that behaviour rewarding using treats or a toy etc.
Sorry guys I don't think I've been very clear, this is how Sully behaves now, he has improved (we keep his attention when another dog is near) he will only go half the distance he used to to get to another dog, we are constantly working with him so he doesn't run off, he is getting better everyday.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
423 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So what you are saying is that you do not have sufficient control over your dog when it starts to interact with other dogs, ie you have NO recall.

If you believe that this level of "control" is acceptable, you will also have to accept the consequences which may occur.

If you are happy that the consequences may be harm to your dog. Fine.

If you are happy that your dog could cause harm to another dog and/or owner. Fine.

Unfortunately of course it will not be only you and your dog that have to pay (in terms of being prosecuted/sued) but the person/dog to whom you have caused harm.
Cause harm? You need to be more specific.
 
1 - 20 of 66 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top