Working dogs in Australia dog parks & socialisation PT 2
The kelpie puppy in the photo and socialisation. dog walksI place video of this puppies 'play' in an off lead dog park on facebook, because its anti-social behaviour was just below the threshold of not being allowed off lead.
The owners were doing the right thing by trying to socialise the dog, but I would guess that they make time only a few times per week to direct this dogs off lead play.
THIS BLOG happens to be about the working dog class and how to help socialise them, it does not condemn the group at all - I love working dogs !
It was just that this puppy annoyed about 3 out of 5 of the immediate dogs in the area, thinking that it was playing. It was very close to being bitten by one larger dog for its relentless dominating behaviour and it was VERY lucky to not be attacked by a large black Labrador that was very social, but just trying to retrieve sticks from the water.
The kelpie puppy was barking and leaping at other dog's faces in a dominant aggressive manner. Not making contact, but basically trying to threaten any dog that they thought it could get away with - but of course the one day it makes a miscalculation will be the day it visits a vet or a dog funeral home.
The very difficult thing in these situations is to say anything to another owner about their dogs inappropriate play. If you feel you are not going to make a difference, and if no dog has been bitten, there is very little point.
There has been a rise in the weekend dog walker over the last ten years, and often its the parents of the child who begged for the dog but never walks it. They feel some responsibility and with cash being tight, they think a walk on maybe two days of the weekend is enough to get their dog social - for many dogs, without expert supervision, it has the opposite effect. the dogs run on anxiety and either have fight or flight. They don't know how to be social and with random plan schedules may never find out. Imagine the stress for the owner and the dog, and that is why so many dogs never visit parks again.
IF you are having issues with your dog (socialisation/ medium anxiety), and they are not being walked. Consult a professional dog walker to see if you can set up a proper walk schedule for your dog. There are ways you can band together with our friends to accomplish this task too. Today is the day to find out, don't delay in your dogs education, or it may harm it for life.
PS I love working dogs, but this blog was borne out of a few recent problems I have seen in the park, with perhaps novice owners ... of course it is NOT all working dogs and not all working dog owners!