Some people just don’t get along with each other. The same is true of dogs! With lockdown restrictions easing across NSW, more people are taking their dog out for exercise and adventures. Given their crowded nature and the range of personalities present, this can make taking your dog to a dog park particularly fraught.
Whether your dog loves meeting other dogs or prefers to be a loner, here are some useful strategies that can help keep your dog safe when out and about.
Tailor your adventures to suit your dog’s needs
Some dogs love being able to approach and sniff every dog they pass on a walk, others prefer to keep their distance. Neither characteristic is wrong per se, it just means that each dog has different needs to be met. If your dog is happy to meet other pups of all shapes and sizes, you might consider visiting a busy dog-friendly area. If your dog likes exercise but not socialisation, it might be better to stick to quieter areas with low dog-traffic.
There are several behaviours that can indicate early signs of confrontation between two dogs. If you see a combination of the following behaviours, it’s a good idea to take your dog out of the situation to avoid things escalating:
-An intense stare and inability to be distracted from the other dog
-Positioning themselves at the other dog’s shoulder with a tall posture
-Whites of the eyes visible
Avoid unpredictable locations
Unfortunately, not all people are responsible dog owners. As such, if there are certain areas where you know that unsafe dogs will be running around off-lead, it’s best to avoid these locations.
Dog parks can also be unpredictable, with dogs of all shapes and sizes hanging around off lead in close quarters. This type of arrangement is difficult for many dogs to cope with and, since most dogs are off lead, can make it difficult to separate dogs if there’s a confrontation. This is why we advise to always use caution before deciding to go to a busy dog park, especially considering many greyhounds can have difficulty with off lead recall.
Sometimes it helps to go on group dog walks with familiar dogs to give your dog the opportunity to exercise and socialise safely. If your area doesn’t have any local dog walking groups, consider starting one to help more dogs have positive and safe experiences.