I love social media! Catching up with my friends, reading and watching the funnies, checking out the local information and events.
Around here we have "Spotted" sites for all our local news, goings ons, etc. A wealth of reasons people use them - lost cats, local news etc.
Very recently and the reason for this blog a message was posted for the attention of dogs and owners in the area!
This is the article -
ATTENTION DOG OWNERS:
If you are out walking your dog, please be considerate of other dog walkers.
If you see a dog that is on a lead, please don't let your dog approach without first checking it is OK to do so with the owner. If the owner asks you to keep your distance, then PLEASE DO THAT! It's not about YOUR dog being friendly or not - it's about respecting that perhaps the dog you're approaching may not be friendly or that the dog might be in training (and therefore needs space/no distractions) or simply that some dogs just don't enjoy the company of other dogs.
Just because a dog is 'cute' and/or small doesn't mean this dog should be approached by your dog without permission of the owner. It's for the safety of you AND your dog and it's about being considerate and respectful.
Same goes if you walk your dog off lead, please make sure you are able to control your dog so you can recall your dog.
To me this is a pleasure to read as it goes to show someone is actively looking out for their dog. However, I then read the comments. I really wish I hadn't!
These are some of them:-
"What a pointless post from somebody that wets themselves at the sight of another dog.Dogs need to socialise, if they don't then they will never get used to other dogs. If they don't behave themseleves or snap then you firmly tell your dog off and put him back on the lead. The next day you go out, let him off again and you keep telling him off until he learns to behave appropriately. Dogs pick up on their owner's apprehension and will act accordingly. Unfortunately many owners don't have the time and patience so post this rubbish instead...."
"Absolutely sick and tired of people with little rats on leads crossing the road or picking their dog up, when. My dog approaches them! Yes he’s a big dog, but he’s soft as shit and just likes to say hello!! Dogs enjoy socialising with each other, give them a chance Ffs they pick up on your stressy tension, just let them be!!"
"It’s the owner with the problem not the dog"
Wow, I honestly thought that the general publics understanding of dogs had improved but reading some of the responses it would appear we are still back in the dark ages. Not only were the comments unhelpful, it showed that peoples understanding of canine behaviour is poor.
Let me make this very clear :-
SOME DOGS NEED SPACE
Dogs are kept on lead for a reason.
It would be great if all owners could let their dogs be off lead but unfortunately for some, this is not the case.
One of the biggest problems my clients who own reactive dogs face is the off-lead dog. Actually, it is not the off-lead dog that is the issue, it’s the owners of the off-lead dog. They obviously have no idea about canine behaviour and would respect the wishes of on-lead dog owners by putting their dog on lead, if they did.
One of the criteria when following a behaviour modification program is distance. Distance from the trigger. The distance allows dogs to think whilst below threshold. Your dog approaching can send them over threshold and then the reactivity will kick in. Going over threshold is something clients of reactive dogs try to avoid as it can set them back months in the recovery process.
Dog reactivity is a growing issue in this country and is fuelled by the off-lead dog.
The majority of these reactive dogs do not have the ability or skills to cope with other dogs that is why you will see people crossing the road or changing direction. It’s to help keep their dogs reactivity under control.
Your dog may be friendly. But some aren’t. Show some consideration for others and put your dog on lead. It is the responsible thing to do.
Also, it keeps your dog safe. The dog on lead could be contagious. Do you want your dog catching something?