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Should I keep my 4 mth old puppy on a long lead or set free?

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Aleksandra_Kinig, Feb 8, 2018.


  1. Aleksandra_Kinig

    Aleksandra_Kinig PetForums Newbie

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    A dog owner in the park today suggested I keep my puppy off the lead or it will cause other dogs to be aggressive towards her. Any truth in this? My pups recall is not 100% perfect, especially not in a dog park, hence the lead. Advice appreciated.
     
  2. labradrk

    labradrk PetForums VIP

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    If a dog is likely to be aggressive then it should be on a lead itself around other dogs, that is a pretty classic example of someone blaming their own problem on others.....

    I would play it by ear with a puppy really. Generally speaking they don't tend to go far and you can use their lack of confidence to your advantage to lay the foundations for recall. It's usually when they hit sexual maturity (6+ months) that everything goes out of the window and the pup ends up on a lead/long line a lot of the time....
     
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  3. Aleksandra_Kinig

    Aleksandra_Kinig PetForums Newbie

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    Interesting. So would you suggest a mixture of both on/off lead with other dogs around? So, for example, only put the dog 'on' when there are dogs around I dont know? Or always keep it off unless there is a risk?
     
  4. labradrk

    labradrk PetForums VIP

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    Depends on the pups behaviour. If the pup is showing too much interest in other dogs then I'd use a line where appropriate, but if it's quiet I'd have the pup off lead.
     
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  5. Jamesgoeswalkies

    Jamesgoeswalkies PetForums VIP

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    No.

    As labradrk says, that is a classic example of someone blaming other people for their dogs behaviour. Having your dog on the lead will not make another dog 'aggressive' towards them.

    In fact having your puppy on a lead (or line) whilst you teach them to listen (and come when called) is perfectly appropriate training. It also prevents a puppy learning behaviours you may later wish to change (ie; running up to every dog).

    When it is quiet or if you are with someone whose dog is calm and trained then letting your puppy off is fine so they can learn to run around and still listen.

    The rest will simply come with training as your pup grows up!

    J
     
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  6. Aleksandra_Kinig

    Aleksandra_Kinig PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for this. I felt like a 'bad dog owner' when she told me off for keeping my dog on the lead. Good to know I'm on the right track!
     
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  7. tabelmabel

    tabelmabel PetForums VIP

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    No that is not true, but I think I know what that owner meant (and it definitely wasn't me you met in the park!)

    Sometimes when dogs come too close together on lead, they can become 'agressive' because they are restricted in their body language by the fact the lead is on.

    I have a 5 yr old dog who is generally friendly to all dogs. There has never been a single instance of any agression when he has been off lead. Where I live, it's all countyside so it is rare to see dogs on lead. Some dogs he will pass, some he will sniff politely and some he will chase with.

    A year or so ago, a lady with a collie saw us coming and put her collie on lead. If i see someone put their dog on lead, i will put mine on too. When we came near each other she said ' my dog doesn't like yours' and we had a little chat and that was that.

    Well, a few days later on a different walk I saw her and her collie but she had not spotted me. I had put my dog on lead but her dog saw mine before she could get it under control and it came flying towards us and a lot of snapping and growling took place round my legs because my dog was stuck next to me on lead.

    So we had a chat and decided next time we came across each other we would both leave our dogs off lead.

    It wasn't long before i saw her coming along again. When the dogs came nearer, her dog adopted the down position by itself and mine gave a very wide bearth around it. So once they could set their own distance, there was no problem. And that's what happened from then on. Unfortunately that owner passed on and the dog re homed so we don't see them now.

    Of course, other dogs shouldn't be approaching yours uncontrolled but sometimes they just do. And as an owner sometimes you cant help pulling your lead in tighter and transmitting anxiety down it which your dog can sense.

    So i think this is maybe what that other owner meant. If your dog does not like another dog in its space, it could show agressive behaviour to get the dog out of its space. Whereas if the same two dogs met off lead they could display the appropriate body language to avert agression. Hope my example illustrated that ok.

    Where i live, there is a kind of unwritten rule that dogs off lead are ok to pass off lead. But dogs on lead are not to be approached. But i don't walk in parks.


    You'll need to work on recall before letting your pup off but they don't tend to go far at a young age.
     
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  8. Aleksandra_Kinig

    Aleksandra_Kinig PetForums Newbie

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    This owners dog was unfriendly towards mine twice - once when it was on the lead and once when it was off the lead.

    My dog was on the lead both times and always friendly to the other dog. My dog lay down when it noticed the other dog was anxious and frustrated. When the other dog bounded towards us and jumped on my dog I pulled it off.

    Today, the other dog was thankfully on the lead but desperately tried to come to us, growling, snarling. etc. It was then that the owner said its because my dog is on the lead and that I should take if off the lead.

    I'm still pracitinc recall so it wont be responsible of me to let it off the lead.
     
  9. Siskin

    Siskin Look into my eyes....

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    What an absolutely rubbish owner. Her poor dog has learned to behave badly, but it's not her fault it's yours for having your dog on a lead and under control. Please ignore what she is saying and tell her that you wish to keep your dog safe from hers.
    In future try and steer clear of this women and her dog. If it's offlead then you need to protect your dog, try and put your dog behind you and try to keep the other dog away, easier said then done I know. The fact that her dog is so out of control that it runs towards other dogs and attacks them is her fault not yours, so tell her firmly to keep her dog on a lead as you do not appreciate your puppy being attacked by her badly behaved dog. If it keeps happening get in touch with your local dog warden, perhaps remarking that this dog is making you feel scared as this may make the warden be more proactive due to the dangerous dog act.
     
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  10. MissSpitzMum

    MissSpitzMum PetForums Senior

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    If you are around alot of off lead dogs, I always think its best to have yours off too (so long as they aren't likely to run off). Dogs act differently on lead, they are more defensive and frustrated. Dogs are also pretty good at setting their own distances as @tabelmabel said, and a lead stops this natural communication. I am not sure exactly what the woman said to you, but perhaps this is what she was trying to tell you?

    You made another thread about an aggressive 18 week old puppy, is this the same dog / owner? If so it sounds as if the puppy wanted to play rudely in the first instance, and now it was on a lead it became frustrated which can come out in the way of snarling and growling. Perhaps the owner was telling you her dog was acting like that because of her lead?
     
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  11. Rafa

    Rafa PetForums VIP

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    If you listen to every knowitall who offers you unasked for advice when walking your dog, you'll go mad.

    You decide what is best for you and your puppy and ignore those who offer their opinions.
     
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  12. Aleksandra_Kinig

    Aleksandra_Kinig PetForums Newbie

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    My dog isn't great at recall yet. At home yes, but not out in the park with doggie distractions. She needs to stay on her lead until I get a handle on this recall business (not that easy :) The lady suggested I take my dog off the lead and said her dog is only a bit older than mine but is allowed off the lead (except when she exits the park). She forgot that her dog did the same thing to mine a few days ago when it was off its own lead which resulted in me having to pull it off my dog. I take on board what you and others have said regarding the leads. I will do my best to avoid this lady and her dog while we are still in training.
     
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