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What's The Rule About Dogs Meeting, Both On Leash?


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I have never owned a dog before, and am learning so much. However I don't quite know what to do when another dog approches us, with his/her owner holding thier leash, on a walk. I've read horror stories about dogs getting in fights, and people getting hurt when both are on leashes(getting tangled, therefore I've avoided it...I'll hold Bella closer to me and make sure she doesn't go near the other dog. Guess I'm just over protective / paranoid about it :blush What's the right thing to do? Bella does greyt at the doggie park, fyi.

Edited by Yamaha_gurl

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Maggie (the human servant), with Miss Bella, racing name "A Star Blackieto"

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Guest Jubilee251

I would say it depends on your dog, as well as the other dog. You have to know your own dog - I know how Molly will react to certain dogs - jumpy, yappy, high-energy puppies will get her riled up and annoy her, so I avoid meeting those. Calm, relaxed dogs are fine, and she gets along well with them. Watch for body language in the other dog.

 

I ALWAYS ask if the other dog is friendly before I let the dogs meet. I know some people will be more paranoid and over-protective, but I think it's good for Molly to meet and socialize with different dogs, assuming they are friendly. I have no problem with on-leash dogs coming toward us.

 

Off-leash dogs coming at us...WHOLE DIFFERENT STORY. :angry:

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I do the same and always ask if the other pup is friendly before letting the dogs close to each other. You can tell by the body language as well sometimes, but I always ask first.

 

Edited to say - I ALWAYS put myself between a charging dog and my pups (happens every so often). Not trying to be a hero but most (all so far) dogs are disuaded from approaching if I am outwardly aggressive towards their charge.

Edited by BrucieDad

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Always ask the person if their pup is friendly before allowing your dog near it. If they say yes, you can allow the dogs to meet. Most times dogs will go for each others rear ends to sniff and say hello. If things are going well great. At the first sign of a low growl or a curled lip, I'd back off and separate the dogs immediately and proceed on my way.

Judy, mom to Darth Vader, Bandita, And Angel

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Guest NJgrey

Yep, always ask other owner if their dog is friendly. Depending on the time of day our girl can be a little jumpy or pushy, but she's usually very well behaved. Starts with a nose-to-nose sniff, then moves to rear ends. That seems to be the greeting ritual. We only had one growly incident, when a whippet was jumping up in her face. Just a low little grumble and the other owner was totally understanding, pulled her dog away because he was being a pain.

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And remember not to have tension on the leash when you do let your dog meet another one. It tells your dog that you are tense, so there must be something scary about to happen, and if over time it will teach your dog that meeting other dogs is a scary thing. I know from the past year of being a first-time dog owner, that's hard to get used to. You figure that if you have your dog up short, it will be easier to pull him out of danger. Might be true, in fact but it also communicates things you don't necessarily want to say.

 

Another thing: Over time as your dog learns to trust you, he will put you between him and a dog he doesn't trust. When I noticed Capri doing this a few months ago, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. I've read here so much about how people say they put themselves in front of a charging loose dog, but I couldn't figure out how to do that all the time. Dogs move so quickly! Now that Capri puts herself behind me, I don't have to worry about her so much and can focus entirely on the intruder.

Sharon, Loki, Freyja, Capri (bridge angel and most beloved heart dog), Ajax (bridge angel) and Sweetie Pie (cat)

Visit Hound-Safe.com by Something Special Pet Supplies for muzzles and other dog safety products

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In general I think dogs greeting on leash is a bad idea. However, like so much other great advice, there is a lot more to it than just do you or don't you. So much depends on the people and dogs involved. Sometimes a potential nice greeting is ruined by the humans actions. If you want to avoid on-leash greetings, you will be in good company with many of the top trainers & behaviorist out there. More & more, the trainers I know & respect are recommending no on-leash greetings. Read or listen to Jolanta Benal's explanation here.

 

Dogs can still meet new dogs while on leash & get the benefit but it doesn't have to be the type of dangerous, in-your-face greetings so many people allow. Yes, of course, always ask the other person first but let's be honest here. Many people really seem not to know or are at least loath to admit that their normally nice & well socialized FrooFroo just doesn't like on leash m&g's. Parallel walking is the best substitute I know for the usual on-leash greetings most people allow. Used it a lot with dogs fresh from the shelter before anyone actually got to get within physical contact distance. Then we evaluated things & may allow off leash greetings or not depending. In the last few years I have come more & more to believe we are much better without the greetings on leash because there was just way too many people now who allow dogs on leash to just rush ahead of them & straight up into other dogs faces.

 

Though I prefer my dogs not have the up close & in your face greetings that so many on leash greeting are, I do want my dogs well socialized & able to tolerate that, even if only long enough for me, Ms. Oblivious, to notice there is a rude dog in their face. I did a lot of careful socialization of my Greyhound when I first got her to make sure she experienced a wide range of dogs. Though not so much against the on-leash greetings idea at the time, we still avoided it when possible until much later. She was often quite near the other dogs, perhaps even stretching her neck past my leg to catch a wiff of eau de derrière. [bTW, use caution when searching for the correct spelling of derrière & do not randomly click links with pictures. :eek ] We did a lot of walking side by side, standing calmly within sniffing distance while the humans talked, and some off-leash visits with certain dogs. That expanded more & more over time. To be honest she never had any problems with on leash greetings but it pays to be cautious & take things slowly. In your case in particular, some caution and further education may be warranted if you are new to dogs & your dog is new to the big wide world. The suggestion to learn more about canine body language is a very good one. Wish I knew more & in fact have a video on order for just that reason.

 

Now I will admit to this & actually just mentioned it to someone at an M&G Sunday. All this rules & cautions? I toss them right out the window when we are meeting up with a groups of Greyhounds from our group. And I really do not adhere to them so much with Greyhounds in general though I keep an eye out for signs that a new dog isn't comfortable. If a Grey in the group gets snippy, which is rare thing, my Greys just back off. So have become rather lax where other Greys on concerned.

 

After all that, here is a word of caution. Do not get tense or worried about greeting other dogs as that tension runs down the leash & effects your dog. Also, do not keep your dog on a tight &/or very short leash all the time. That's no fun for anyone. Assuming she walks well on a loose leash, if you see another dog coming just take up the slack in the leash to keep your dog in something like a heel position and just keep walking. If the other dog is one out on the end of the leash, especially straining on the leash, just move over a little, try to calmly move between your dog & the other or go in a different direction. Again, parallel walking with other people and dogs is the best for socializing on leash. As time goes your knowledge, experience & confidence will build and on leash greetings can become an unusual but safe thing.

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I usually ask if the other dog is friendly and most times it's pretty obvious by the dogs body language. I let the dogs meet with the leashes loose and just monitor every ones reaction and try to keep the leashes from becoming tangled together. I've never had any problems, knock on wood. If I'm unsure of the other dog I'll just give a wide berth when passing them and continue on my way. It's important that you don't pull Bella back and cause tension on the leash when she approaches other dogs, that inadvertently sends the message to her there is something to be worried about and could lead to problems down the road. Also greyhounds for the most part are good judges of character when it comes to other dogs, if either of my dogs get nervous or doesn't want to meet the other dog, we don't. They sense more then we do.

Edited by greytluck

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I usually ask if the other dog is friendly and most times it's pretty obvious by the dogs body language. I let the dogs meet with the leashes loose and just monitor every ones reaction and try to keep the leashes from becoming tangled together. I've never had any problems, knock on wood. If I'm unsure of the other dog I'll just give a wide berth when passing them and continue on my way. It's important that you don't pull Bella back and cause tension on the leash when she approaches other dogs, that inadvertently sends the message to her there is something to be worried about and could lead to problems down the road. Also greyhounds for the most part are good judges of character when it comes to other dogs, if either of my dogs get nervous or doesn't want to meet the other dog, we don't. They sense more then we do.

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What happens generally with my greyhound (I'm very very new to this, too) is that he'll pull towards any dog he spots. Now I know about the loose leash business and tension transmission, but how do I keep the leash loose if the dog can't wait to get to the other dog? Is training then the only answer to this, like flawless heeling, which seems very hard to do, in other words, is my dog just poorly mannered no thanks to me if he pulls towards any strange dog? Mind you he's friendly with everyone as long as nobody's too excited, and even then he just walk away.

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Guest gecko_foot

 

I ALWAYS ask if the other dog is friendly before I let the dogs meet.

 

 

Just remember that some owners will LIE about their dogs being friendly. Letting the dogs meet is a judgment call on your part. As others have stated - you have to know your own dog and how he/she reacts to make an informed decision. If you're tense and worried about the interaction, it's probably better if you don't meet. Your dog and/or the other dog will likely pick up on that energy and react to it. If you decide to let them meet, don't forget to look for subtle cues (wrinkled nose, etc.) as well as the more obvious ones. It takes time to learn these things, and I'm certainly no expert, but good luck nonetheless.

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What happens generally with my greyhound (I'm very very new to this, too) is that he'll pull towards any dog he spots. Now I know about the loose leash business and tension transmission, but how do I keep the leash loose if the dog can't wait to get to the other dog? Is training then the only answer to this, like flawless heeling, which seems very hard to do, in other words, is my dog just poorly mannered no thanks to me if he pulls towards any strange dog? Mind you he's friendly with everyone as long as nobody's too excited, and even then he just walk away.

 

I have a two-part answer to this: yes, you need to do a little more leash training with your dog, or possibly he just needs to mature a little more (if he's just young and spunky). But that's not meant to place blame. The second part of my answer is that the dog knows if the leash tension comes from YOU as opposed to simply because he's pulling forward. So don't worry about that. When he comes to a stop and there is still tension on the leash, try to loosen up a bit to tell him that you are relaxed. If you loosen up and he pulls forward again, in a never-ending cycle until he's eight-thousand feet away from you (okay, I exxagerate for effect - LOL), then clearly more leash training is needed. Otherwise, no problemo!

 

 

I ALWAYS ask if the other dog is friendly before I let the dogs meet.

 

 

Just remember that some owners will LIE about their dogs being friendly. Letting the dogs meet is a judgment call on your part. As others have stated - you have to know your own dog and how he/she reacts to make an informed decision. If you're tense and worried about the interaction, it's probably better if you don't meet. Your dog and/or the other dog will likely pick up on that energy and react to it. If you decide to let them meet, don't forget to look for subtle cues (wrinkled nose, etc.) as well as the more obvious ones. It takes time to learn these things, and I'm certainly no expert, but good luck nonetheless.

 

I don't think they lie so much as they're just clueless. Too many people have no idea what constitutes doggy manners, so they think that charging another dog with tail wagging means "he wants to greet you". They also tend to project human manners onto their dogs, so when their dog runs directly into your dog's face, they think he's "giving kisses". Which of course leads back to the suggestion for the OP to read up on dog socialization so that she spots these danger zones before they go bad.

Sharon, Loki, Freyja, Capri (bridge angel and most beloved heart dog), Ajax (bridge angel) and Sweetie Pie (cat)

Visit Hound-Safe.com by Something Special Pet Supplies for muzzles and other dog safety products

:gh_bow

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Guest mowreyAZ

Excellent advice, I'll be using some of the techniques soon. thank to the OP for asking the question and all the responses, some very wise words in the replies.

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Since this is your first dog, personally, I recommend an obedience class for both of you. Your dog may be well-behaved but basic obedience work is a great way to build a bond with the dog. Additionally it will give you the opportunity to socialize your dog to other dogs in a controlled environment and learn how to read the interactions between dogs with supervision and instruction. From there you can practice both obedience and socializing your dog on your own, giving both of you more confidence and more bond as a team.

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Guest dogbiteexpert

Simply watch and respond.

 

If either dog seems stiff, tries to get away, growls or snarls....move away slowly.

Whatever you do, don't suddenly pull away as that typically is what starts fights.

 

Give them room to check each other out as long as the above warnings are not present.

 

http://www.dogbite-expert.com

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Guest krystolla

Too many people have no idea what constitutes doggy manners, so they think that charging another dog with tail wagging means "he wants to greet you".

 

:nod

 

I usually trust my own reading of a dogs intentions more that whatever the owner is yelling out. I've had people say their dog is safe when he's fiercely barking and charging, and had people say their dog isn't friendly when he's gently approaching without making eye contact. The latter was a young bull dog who'd slipped his collar, I'm guessing he'd only been introduced to the psychotic yorkies who live on the same street.

 

My preference is to stand still with my boy, on an angle to the approaching dog, and wait until the other owner approaches. Head on, active, approaches cause more tension but it's hard for humans to do the gentle curves that dogs use to approach each other. If there's any question, I cross to the other side of the street and wave. :)

 

There's a lot of talk about socializing dogs but it doesn't always have to be up close and personal. Having your dog able to walk past another dog without jumping around or being crazy is also socialization.

Edited by krystolla
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