Bad experience at the park Questions

Discussion in 'Belgian Shepherd Dog (Malinois)' started by Margo8478, Mar 13, 2019.

  1. Margo8478

    Margo8478 New Member

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    Bad experience at the park

    im so annoyed. So Max just turned 4 months and got his final shots, so yesterday I started taking him to the park so he can get used to dogs cause right now he is scared and will bark and growl at dogs. However once he meets them he is ok and yesterday he did so well. So we went back today and I have him on a leash and we are walking around the park, seeing things, meeting people and dogs and he is doing so good, still some growling/barking but I can see his progress and once he is there with them he stops.

    Anyway I go to leave and I notice a guy coming in to the park with a dog on a leash, and this dog is pulling and jumping, crying. I knew right away that wasn’t a dog I wanted Max to meet. So I go around the long way to the parking to avoid crossing paths with this guy and his dog.

    We are walking down the “ramp” towards the cars and three large dogs are approaching, no big deal, Max is quiet, But then I look over to my right and the guy with the dog on the leash is coming up to all of us and his dog is super crazy. I see what’s about to happen and start turning around to go back up and away from this situation, and one of the large dogs and the dog on the leash get into it, and at this point I’m still trying to get Max up this hill and away but Max is so scared by this fighting he sees he starts barking and crying so loud and pees himself. The large dog approached him which only escalated Max’s barking and crying. I’m still pulling him up and away and we walk up a hill away from everything where these two nice women are with their two older dogs, Max is still barking and crying loudly. I’m trying to get him to settle down, he was so scared . So I sit down on this ledge and just wait for him so see everything is ok, and he does and ends up laying down while I talk to these women and there two dogs are calmly standing there. I stay this way for 5 minutes, I didn’t want to leave the park while he was still very scared, I didn’t want to leave on a bad note. So after he was calm and laying down around those dogs for a little bit I left the park with him.
    I’m so worried that this will mess up any progress he has made with dogs. I hope I did the right thing by waiting till he was calm and quiet before we left. This is the exact situation I was trying to avoid, and why I didn’t want to come near that particular dog.

    And when he was away from situation and those dogs he just kept barking and barking, I know he was still
    Scared but what do I do in that situation? I didn’t want to pet him cause I was worried that it would encourage that behavior, so I sat there calmly and tried soothing him verbally until he calmed down.

    Did I do the right thing?
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  3. mjfromga

    mjfromga Member

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    It's hard to be sure what the correct thing is to do. I've never had an issue with my dog barking or growling at other dogs. He's just not like that. He's always been a friendly guy. He's also not a fearful dog so while he does notice issues between others, he doesn't really react to them.

    Whenever I see poorly behaved dogs and their owners struggling to control them, I just roll my eyes... Why bring such dogs to the park? I've gotten nasty looks and its obvious that some of the people are embarassed.

    But I've gotta say, I wouldn't bring my dog that barks and growls at other dogs to the park for socialization. This sounds like it would be better handled by putting him into personalized training or starting slow with him in a less chaotic setting with one or two other dogs in a controlled situation.

    Also, strangers won't take kindly to having their dogs barked and growled at by your dog (I definitely wouldn't) and as you see, with a nervous dog, a park full of people and dogs really isn't the ideal situation for training a dog such as yours IMO. There's no real control.

    I honestly think you kinda set yourself up for such a setback. Hopefully someone else can chime in with opinions. I definitely would not try and pet a worked up dog, might result in an accidental bite or something. I do think you did right there.
  4. Margo8478

    Margo8478 New Member

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    Thanks for the reply.

    The park I brought him to was just a normal park,not a dog park. I just wanted to walk him around to get used to things and it was working. We only approached people that approached us first, and I always explain he is a puppy and scared but he is friendly. He doesn’t bite or snap.

    I guess I’m just really annoyed with that guy, at least he had that dog on a leash but why he decided to follow us or find us and approach was annoying, I went out of my way to avoid him.

    I’ll never take Max to a dog park, or any of my dogs for that matter cause you never know what can happen with so many dogs off leash. I thought just a normal park would be fine.
  5. Chris B

    Chris B Member

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    Malka likes this.
    You did the best thing you could do in the circumstances - follow a bad experience with a good one.

    Unfortunately, these things happen. There are a lot of irresponsible people out there that really haven't any sense.

    If you can, try to find good entrance/exit routes that have plenty of room and escape routes. It shouldn't be necessary, but alas it often is
  6. GsdSlave

    GsdSlave Member

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    Margo8478 and Malka like this.
  7. Margo8478

    Margo8478 New Member

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