Pets.ca - Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 

-->

Frustrating people on my dog walks or maybe it's just me??

Missy
June 15th, 2004, 11:07 PM
I am in the process of training Molly on walks by having her sit calmly every time someone walks by and then giving her a treat. But people seem to make this difficult so please excuse my need to vent!!

Like the other day, before Molly had even noticed anyone was even in front of us, this woman makes a big point of jumping away and crying out loudly. Well, it scared Molly who then proceeded to bark at her. Of course, this caused the woman to get upset with me and for Molly to get really tense and snarl at every passing person.

Then there was the guy with his dog who actually made a point of crossing the street to come closer, stopping and then standing ten feet away from us watching her go nuts. I couldn't believe a dog owner would do that - it was so obvious that I was trying to train her and that the presence of him and his dog was taunting her.

These are just some small examples of what happens on an everyday basis. I am sure it doesn't sound all that bad really but when you are trying so hard to train a puppy on a leash it can be so hard to handle. Why do people do this - or am I the only one who has this problem? I just don't see that I am making that much progress on the whole fear of strangers thing with her.

glasslass
June 16th, 2004, 12:28 AM
I have a poodle that I take with me into stores that allow him. I carry him in my arms. Little kids want to pet him because he looks so fluffy and soft, like a toy. I'm always amazed at the parents who allow them to just come right up tp reach for him. I have to tell them to let him sniff their hands first, etc. etc. I'm proud of him and he likes to be admired, but any dog could bite if startled. If he did, he would be the one at fault!

cutelittlemako
June 16th, 2004, 11:21 AM
People can be so rude sometimes. I take puppy training classes as Petsmart and every class we have to go out of the fenced in area in the store and walk around to pratice the "walk on loose leash". Well of course, when people see we are taking a class they stand around our little gate and when we come out to walk, they just hover over our puppies and we can't go walking around nicely. Also when we're walking in the store, some people come up to me and ask to pet Mako - well I don't know what they think we're doing walking around the store with a foam cup of water in our hands that we're not supposed to spill. Last Monday, a lady asked me to pet Mako - and I was able to tell he no because we were practicing out walking. I was proud of myself!

And another petsmart story - there was a photograph there the other day and I went with Mako and my neighbour who has a lab. Well Mako had his pictures done and I was waiting for my neighbour to have her dog photographed, I was talking to another puppy owner and our dogs were playing together - this little girl (about 5 years old) comes up to us and asked to pet our dogs (no parents around) so we let her, then I was walking around the store and I saw her asking other dog owners if she could hug their dogs... Where were her parents. Petsmart is not a place to let a young child run loose. And this is not the first time this has happened to me - we went when I just got Mako and this little girl kept picking him up, but she wasn't much taller than Mako, her mother wasn't saying anything, so I had to. And they had to Whipets with them - imagine those poor dogs. I don't want Mako to be afraid of kids - so I had to say something, but I really think that's the parents job!.

O.K. done with the venting!

melanie
June 16th, 2004, 06:03 PM
if people deliberatly approach you with a dog, i would call out and tell them you are trying to train and to please not approach. as for the screaming woman, i would have laughed at her and told her to bugger off, and made it clear she was being a freak. dont let anyone make you feel bad, they are the freaks and you are trying to help molly. dont ever feel bad when you are within your rights, oh you poor buggers, gosh i cant stand some stupid humans sometimes (i now stand and do some fancy kicking and punching moves in the air, stupid humans):mad:

heidiho
June 16th, 2004, 06:51 PM
Iknow,same here in px,i will be telling my dog to stay and these idiots will whistle and crap next time i am just gonna let my dog scare the sh%t out of them

Kona Dawg
June 16th, 2004, 06:56 PM
when they crap, are you sure its a whistle your hearing?

cutelittlemako
June 16th, 2004, 06:59 PM
hahahaha
too funny Kona

Lucky Rescue
June 16th, 2004, 07:00 PM
If I remember correctly, Molly has a fear problem, right? If you're taking her to busy places with lots of people around, I dont' think she's ready for that yet. You need to take her someplace where the people are not so close, and she won't be so overwhelmed.

As soon as you see Molly begin to get alarmed,distract her BEFORE she starts reacting by barking, etc. Does she know the "watch me" command? If not you can teach her that, and as soon as she looks at you, treat and walk briskly away from the people, using a happy voice - "Molly, let's go! Good girl!!"

Do NOT stand there and let her get hysterical. If she likes squeaky toys, bring one and squeak it to redirect her, if she loves treats, use that, and then leave.

If you stay and Molly gets overly fearful, her fear is being reinforced as she will think she cannot trust you to keep her safe.

This is a long process - but it can be done with persistance, training and socializing.

heidiho
June 16th, 2004, 07:03 PM
:d :d :d

heidiho
June 16th, 2004, 07:07 PM
Ok i dont know what that was..

Missy
June 16th, 2004, 07:26 PM
Well, it's nice to know I am not alone in this! I also can't believe how rude people can be. An early negative experience with an unsupervised child at a family gathering has resulted in Molly having a distinct fear and dislike of kids. That and the numerous times kids have run up to her and chased her while screaming. She was so timid in the beginning and she was terrified by these kids (who I realize where only trying to play) as their parents stood by without intervening. Now when I see kids, I head the other way. I just wish parents would teach their kids that not all dogs are friendly and that you should be cautious before running at a dog to pet him.

By the way Cutelittlemako, how on earth do you manage to walk a puppy with a cup full of water???

heidiho
June 16th, 2004, 07:29 PM
I love it,so do i.....I used to take him to this certain area where my apts are but these friggin kids arethere,they dont move when we are walking on the sidewalk,their parents just sit there and dont say anything....So now i dont let every one pet him either ..................

Missy
June 16th, 2004, 07:30 PM
LuckyRescue - yes, she does have a problem with fear and that is why I have been working with her on these walks. I try not to expose her to busy places, mostly just my neighborhood which is pretty quiet but where we do see people. As soon as I see someone come close, and before she has the chance to react, I get her attention, make her sit and then I give her a treat as they walk past. My goal is to get her to associate oncoming strangers with good things and look to me to anticipate treats when she sees someone coming. I don't know though, will this work? Am I doing enough? I have been doing it for a while but I am making slow process.

I usually try to pull her away when people react in such a way that frightens or unnerves her but I thought it might be better for me to get her under control first then to just drag her away but if you think that makes it worse, I will be quicker about it in the future.

The funny thing is, whenever I take her to an off-leash dog park she has no trouble with people. She feels comfortable running up to sniff them, check them for potential treats and then trots away. I have always thought the leash just added to her anxiety, but I don't know if that is true.

heidiho
June 16th, 2004, 07:35 PM
See i dont want him thinking strangers are that ok....Because there are some weird people that walk by when we are out at night,i dont want him thinking everyone is harmless......I had him out one night at 3:00 a.m. and some weirdo wouldnt leave me alone....

cutelittlemako
June 16th, 2004, 11:04 PM
Missy, the water thing is part of our Puppy class at Petsmart, we have a cup full of water and we can't drop any of it - or else we lose points. I haven't droped any of it - it's doable!

See, my problem with Mako is that he likes humans more than he likes other animals. A cat can run by right in from of him and he won't flinch, but if a human moves 100 feet from us - than he just gets all excited and wants to go visit them. I think that will change over time.

Heidi - since your Damien is just a puppy you should really get him socialized with all kinds of people. No matter if you think they are weird or not. Damien is a SMART pup and when he is a bit older his defensive side will show itself and no matter what, he'll be there to defend you. But you don't want him to be defensive towards any particular type of people. For example, if a black person (using this as an example - could be anything), startles you at any point when you are walking Damien, then he could regard all black people as a danger - and you have to avoid that. Always stay calm with him, even if you don't feel calm. It's the most important thing you could do for him and for yourself. You don't want your dog to discriminate against anyone.

Boxers a somewhat of guard dogs and they need to be socialized well, but if me or anyone in out house is in any danger, they will be offensive. I just don't want him to always be offensive. I guess this info could also apply to GSD's.

mona_b
June 16th, 2004, 11:27 PM
Heidi - since your Damien is just a puppy you should really get him socialized with all kinds of people. No matter if you think they are weird or not. Damien is a SMART pup and when he is a bit older his defensive side will show itself and no matter what, he'll be there to defend you. But you don't want him to be defensive towards any particular type of people. For example, if a black person (using this as an example - could be anything), startles you at any point when you are walking Damien, then he could regard all black people as a danger - and you have to avoid that. Always stay calm with him, even if you don't feel calm. It's the most important thing you could do for him and for yourself. You don't want your dog to discriminate against anyone.

Boxers a somewhat of guard dogs and they need to be socialized well, but if me or anyone in out house is in any danger, they will be offensive. I just don't want him to always be offensive. I guess this info could also apply to GSD's.

You are 100% right on this.

This is where people aggression comes in also.If you keep a pup away from strangers,then they think they are all bad.With my 2,I made sure they were socialized with everything and everyone.This was most important especialy with Tron since he was being trained to be my brothers partner.I had to get him used to loud noises.Especialy fireworks.As they somewhat mimic gun shot noises.The worse thing you can do is keep them away from people.And trust me when I say Yukon has put a few weirdos in their place.And when he has,I didn't praise him for it...If I did,then he would make it a habit.And that is something I didn't want.And if anyone was to harm my family,they would both protect us.This is just instinct to protect those they love.

cutelittlemako
June 16th, 2004, 11:40 PM
Exactly, even if your dog is extemely with everyone he sees on the steet, when he matures he will KNOW -by instinct- when there is trouble, whether you are sleeping of awake - whatever your reaction is, that's what guard dogs do!

Mona, I started my Harley around Mako once and he didn't flinch - I was sure he'd freak out, so I stayed calm and he didn't think anything of it. He stayed calm and steady. He's also not afraid of thunder. I want him to stay that way! Whatever the situation, if you just stay calm around your dog, he'll sense it and he will stay calm too - bottom line. Staying calm and cool is important because you want you dog to be able to read you, when you are startled by something, he will know it and react accordingly.

I'm very careful around Mako right now because even though he loves ALL humans, I know that in a few months his insticts will kick in and what I thought him in his first months will start to matter.

Good Luck!

Lucky Rescue
June 17th, 2004, 12:13 AM
I usually try to pull her away when people react in such a way that frightens or unnerves her but I thought it might be better for me to get her under control first then to just drag her away but if you think that makes it worse, I will be quicker about it in the future.


Right. Pulling or dragging her away is making her think that YOU are frightened, which will make her worse. If you ever see police dogs being trained to attack, they are always on a tight lead because it has exactly this effect. This is why I suggested getting her attention, then encouraging her to follow you away with a happy voice. You don't want to give the impression "We have to run away from the bad people!"

The funny thing is, whenever I take her to an off-leash dog park she has no trouble with people. She feels comfortable running up to sniff them, check them for potential treats and then trots away

This is very typical. When off leash, Molly knows she has the option of having strangers near her, and knows she is free to leave. Also, in this situation, SHE is approaching THEM. Makes a big difference.

My VERY fear aggressive foster was the same. If someone called her to them, she would happily go and be very friendly. If she was on leash and anyone approached her, she put up a frightening display of aggression because she was "trapped."

Just to give you hope, that dog is now just fine with people, but it did take a lot of work and patience.

melanie
June 17th, 2004, 05:41 PM
heidi, let damien talk to most people he wants at park (if they want) if you are intentionally socialising him eg.that day. as long as they look normal there is no harm in a little pat. if they look obviously creepy or weird well your not about to talk to them and just ignore them. i have found in the past charlie is a great judge of character and she will let me know the ones she does not like and we wont go near them. but i would not reccomend walking up to complete strangers anyway, only those at dog park ect. and i dont want to hear of you talking to weirdos in the night, now dont talk to strangers missy :D and just avoid them on night walks, and i found that charlie puts most weirdos off anyway. i always trust her judgement of character, if she does not like someone i will ask them to leave my house or stop talking to them, but remember charlie is 8yo and has met alot of people, most wondeful but some plain nasty (and alot of experiences she used to hitchhike everywhere, :p ) so she has had alot of practice, but i think it is natural as well so never force him if he does not want to..

heidiho
June 17th, 2004, 05:50 PM
No i would never train him not to like people,there are plenty of my neighbors who he sees on our evening walk and pet him while i talk to them,but there is a mental va hospital a few blocks away and there are some weird ones that walk down my street,one guy i was passing on the sidewalk was petting my dog and asked if he could give him a treat i said no you cant,well he had it in his hand and said oops i'm sorry & let damien eat it,i was highly pissed,what the hell was the guy doing with dog treats in his pocket anyway,you know....And you are right there are certain people damien barks at and others he doesnt,he knows something i dont...

Spoiled
June 17th, 2004, 07:57 PM
Ok this got a little long to read all of it, so I only read the first few posts, but however...

I'm always amazed at the parents who allow them to just come right up tp reach for him.
I can totaly identify with you. These kids are always bugging me and Bentley, in fact the other day, one was petting him through the fence, with a parent just sitting there watching. They didn't ask - nothing. Just let this little two year old guy pet Bentley, who could have so easily bitten him. I figure that if Bentley bites, too bad. I wasn't watching, and they didn't ask, so it isn't my fault. Too bad for them.

At the pet store a kid just jumped in front of us and began to pet Bentley on the head. Bentley wasn't trying to bite, but was jumping up and snorting at her. She was terrified. Ya, just pet my dog on the head with no warning and sharp movements, and expect him to behave.

Sorry for the vent.

When training with my friend and the two dogs get going, it is helpful to walk the other way and do sits, downs, whatever. Just get her to concentrate on you.

Luba
June 17th, 2004, 09:08 PM
Geeze I know this ALL too well when trying to teach Sadie the off command when she jumps to greet people.

"OH I don't mind" Grrrr I hate that cause I say 'Well I do' and explain that when she's gonna be 70 lbs of muscle flying on them or a child knocking them over they'll mind!

Sometimes they understand others just start dancing with her holding her feet.

As soon as they do that I give Sadie the off command then walk away briskly w/o saying even goodbye to them. I have only enough patience as required.

Sometimes I can spot the idiot ones a mile away. They're the ones that run right up to the dog w/o asking permission or talking to 'you' the owner first!

I always make a point of telling them to stop and let Sadie approach 'them' first. Again some listen, some don't!

Maybe we all should just say our dogs BITE a LOT! LMAO that'll keep em all away lol ;)

heidiho
June 18th, 2004, 11:06 AM
Iwas thining of that myself,when they say is your dog friendly,no he isnt...hee!! hee!!!

Lucky Rescue
June 18th, 2004, 11:12 AM
I am often shocked at parents too. When I was bringing Chloe home, we stopped at a rest area for her to go pee. This was a dog I had known for only a few hours.

As I walked her, there was a man nearby holding his son by the hand. The boy looked about 3. In the flash of an eye, the boy let go his dad's hand, raced up to Chloe and threw himself over her back. The kid's dad stood there smiling and said, "Oh he loves dogs!" I was so shocked I was momentarily speechless. I had no idea what Chloe would do in reaction to this sudden "attack"!

Luckily, Chloe proved what a wonderful girl she is, and merely turned her head and licked the child's face.

I said to the kid, "You must always ask before petting a dog" and said it loudly so dad would hear.

If this had happened with my last dog, the kid would have had the wits frightened out of him. :eek:

Lucky Rescue
June 18th, 2004, 11:17 AM
Okay, just have to add this stupid joke that makes me laugh every time I think of it.

"A man and a dog are at a street corner, waiting for the light to change.

A second man comes up and waits and asks the first man, "Does your dog bite?"

The first man answers "No".

So the second man reaches down to pet the dog, and it bites him.

He says angrily, "I thought you said your dog doesn't bite??"

The first man says, "That's not my dog".

:D

Luba
June 18th, 2004, 12:48 PM
haha cute one LR

cutelittlemako
June 18th, 2004, 01:59 PM
I live in Ottawa and I was driving home to see my parents in Northern Ontario. I was pet sitting my dad's dog and I brought him with me. My dad has a 12 year old Chow Chow. We stopped in North Bay to get some coffee and I was standing outside with the dog to let him stretch out. This lady and her young daughter start walking towards us, I hear them say that he looks like a teddy bear... Before she even was close to us, she stops then asks wether my dog was friendly. Well I told he no, (I didn't tell he why - by this dog has already bitten many people and he's very wary of strangers, plus I'm not his master, so I'm not taking any chances). The lady looked all mad and she just walked away like I was being a bitch. I'm very glad she asked before coming over because she would have thought I was a real bitch if I would have had to stop her in her tracks. Oh well, that's what having a dog is like, you have to handle these situations, and the people who don't understand, well too bad for them.

mastifflover
June 18th, 2004, 02:48 PM
I have to agree some people with kids are jerks. Buddy is an English Mastiff rescue, he was abused and has some fear issues. He has come a long way but still gets scared, I constantly have people making ignorant comments about my pony or why would you want such a vicious dog? Buddy luckily doesn't have an aggressive bone in his body. I have had people with kids run up to him screaming in their little shrill voices and he gets scared and tries to get away from them (can't blame him) then the parents will make some comment about the dog being mean or aggressive. I finally had last night and ripped this couple and their brat a new a--hole. This of course is the cleaned up version. I said they should maybe consider teaching their child pet safety. That my dog is not aggressive but had been physically abused and is scared. So before you go shooting your big mouth off maybe you should learn to control you brat, because one day he is going to get bit and it will be his own damn fault and yours. Try asking pet owners if it is ok to pat your dog. Most people would appreciate it and will probably say yes

heidiho
June 18th, 2004, 03:21 PM
good for you mastifflover, i think some kids need a good nip......in the as^&

Luba
June 18th, 2004, 03:38 PM
Forget them CLM you did right! :D

MastiffLvr wow thats hillarious...I can just see that playin out in my mind. Good for you I would love to be a flea on a dog to see that one!!

Spoiled
June 18th, 2004, 05:46 PM
That is funny MastifLover! I hate it when screaming little kids run up to Bentley. I feel Bentley would hesitate if he felt he should bite, but would probably anyways if he felt that himself or me was in danger. These people need to lean to control their kids. Where was that I saw the add for "leash and collar for kids?"

wAggie
June 19th, 2004, 12:46 PM
omg, those are some messed pet owners. :mad:

its definitely NOT you, Missy!!
Then again, PLEASE dont let them get to you, give dirty looks :D

melanie
June 20th, 2004, 05:55 PM
Go Chloe, great reaction to the little mongrel, she should be a mascot for the breed, might bring up the reputatuion, oh what a good girl, big smooches from us :D .ohh sometimes you just want to whack someone in the head and ask to see evidence of a brain. sadly as a teen i once walked past a GSD, my friend in front went first and had a pat and the dog was happy, i walked past and put a hand out and - it went absolutly psycho, i was always scared of dogs but my friend had did it so i assumed the dog was fine, well i havent made that stupid mistake again, shheeesh, bloody teenagers. but it was a good lesson. no one, i mean no one goes near charlie, since she was a pup anyway. the size of her put most off and she is not a traditionally cute little dog so they are not interested. one kid kicked her when she was a pup, he was scared so he lashed out when he was walking past (no parent in sight), well i grabed that little #$%^ and told him i would kick him back, well i didnt kick him but boy was he crying hard when he went away, i doubt he bothered again to harass dogs.
but absolutly no one has been near charlie in years, oh the mothers point her out to the kids and say look at the dog but that is it, i am really lucky, she just does not look like the approachable type (although she is and loves everyone, but i am glad she doesnt). oh boy am i the lucky one.
i imagine it would be really hard with little dogs and cutie pie sadie, they naturally attract attention, i did it myself to a puppy and its mum the other day, just had to say hello to the cutie. :D

glasslass
June 20th, 2004, 06:11 PM
Yeah, but I bet you asked 1st! I alway have to fuss over other dogs too, as well as giving my dog a chance to say hi too. He loves meeting other dogs, but I make sure he'll get a friendly reception before I allow him to approach it! :)

glasslass
June 20th, 2004, 06:22 PM
Last Fall I was in Petsmart without my own dog because I had just stopped on my way home from work. Two young men came into the store holding their dog by 2 heavy chains between them. This was the 1st time in my life I ever felt absolute fear just looking at a dog. I don't know what kind it was. It was huge, some kind of bulldog type, with bulging shoulder and chest muscles as it strained on the chains and tried to lunge at every other dog around. It looked like the men could barely hold him. I was grateful my dog wasn't with me. Why would they bring a dog like that into a store and put on such a "show"?

melanie
June 20th, 2004, 06:28 PM
oh that is sad. and why would you let a dog get like that, poor dog, cant be a happy life being so scary, ohhhh poooor pupy. i dont know how you controled yourself(well the big scary dog would have done it). i would have wanted to rip their heads off and beat the up or something, a good kick to the shins at least, oh that is sad, mongrels, i wish that type of dog owner 10000 bad karma points, karma will always get them in the end, ha, ha (i stand and do those kicking and punching moves into the air again, ahhh) :mad: :mad: :mad: