Proper protocols for puppy play dates.
Discover how to respond to problematic interactions between dogs.
In this episode, we learn when a dog is greeting another dog in a good way and in a bad way.
- Dogs are who they are – they are perfect, it is our job as owners to create a situation where our dog can thrive and there are things we need to be aware of during greeting situations.
- Be lenient when the dogs are greeting AND be mindful.
- Do not bring toys to the dog park, as it is intended for them to be socializing.
- Three main situations when your dog will greet other dogs
- On-leash greetings (walking your dog, etc.):
- You are on a casual walk and you want to greet some else’s dog that they have meet before.
- They will get very relaxed in their front shoulders
- Dogs greet by butt sniffing because they have glands that secrete specific smells – it is their fingerprint
- If they want to play they will bow all the way down and have a big butt wave – showing a greeting that they want to play
- Remember the leash is used as a conductor of your energy to your dog
- Tension from you creates tension to with your dog
- If you are tense and start immediately pulling your dog away that could make them think they need to immediately protect you and could become aggressive towards other dogs during a greeting
- If you are tense walk away from the greeting until your dog focuses on you then once they are focused on you, allow them to re-greet and try it again
- You must be relaxed
- If it’s a dog that they haven’t greeted and anything happens get them away from the situation and get their attention on you
- If your dog is an aggressive greeter – the human and the dog must together to overcome this issue
- Greeting at your home.
- Your home is your dogs territory so anytime you are brining a new dog into your home and you do not know the other dog’s personality and that dog shows aggression your dog is going to show aggression as well
- If you are bringing a new dog to your home have them meet on neutral ground away from your home that way it is not a big deal to them at that moment
- If there is a protective greeting or your dog becomes possessive in the home take all the toys up because it can help decrease the territory issue
- Try not to give more attention to one dog or another
- Allow the dogs to interact with one another and see how they are doing
- Off-leash greetings (at the dog park, etc.)
- Multiple dogs means multiple personalities
- If it is your first time in the off leash park – bring your dog in the park with the leash on and keep the leash on them
- If you do go grab your dog and remove him from a situation other dogs will follow and you are creating a sign of weakness for your dog
- Correcting your dog can possibly create an aggressive situation because other dogs will follow
- Look out for body languages when your dog is meeting and greeting all the other dogs (EP028)
- Initial greetings like big butt sniff, he may also bump his back end at another dog or turn his back at another dog, circling toward each other – these are positive signs
- Circling away from each other in a large circle – this is not a positive sign – you will probably want to separate this by even just walking in between them
- You must remain calm at all times when you are handling your dog or interacting with him in this new situation
- When dogs play – they are practicing for real life situations
- When one dog goes after another dogs back leg or for the neck or underneath area they are practicing for those real life fighting situations
- Dogs create their own style of “defense” and they use it in their play as well.
Learning what your dog’s signs are when in a positive greeting situation and in a negative greeting situation.
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