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Yikes! Need Advice With New Grey


Guest Emmiesmom
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Guest Emmiesmom

Hi all,

 

I'm pretty shaken up about an incident at the dog park today and am looking for suggestions. Sorry it's a little lengthy.

 

Let me preface this-I had a greyhound before and have 3 other dogs-2 small and 1 medium size as well as cats. I have had no problems before with agression with any of my dogs so this is new territory for me. I adopted my greyhound Emmie 3 months ago and she has had a pretty smooth transition. We have been taking the dogs to the dogpark (as well as lots of walks) for the last two months and haven't had any problems until recently. Emmie has started running very quickly at some of the dogs and scares them to death. When she gets up on them sometimes she will sniff and sometimes she will pin them and start mouthing roughly with the front of her teeth-almost like chewing but being rough. I always correct the behavior with a stern "EASY!" and pull her away from the other dog.

 

Well today I don't know what started it but she ran up to a little yorkie and actually grabbed the dog while growling! It took myself and another person to restrain her and pull her away from the dog-she let go but was fixated. Thank God the yorkie wasn't hurt but so scared he pooped. I was shocked and immediately started to take the dogs home. The owner of the yorkie asked me to stay-she thought the yorkie and another dog were fighting and Emmie ran into the middle of it. I was wary and so upset but stayed to make sure she submitted and relaxed. She was fine for the next half hour-sniffed the yorkie, no problems. Then the owner was carrying the yorkie through the park and Emmie ran up and tried to grab the dog again!

 

I was so angry-ran after her, grabbed her by the collar, yelled "NO!", smacked her on the rear and we got out of there asap.

 

I'm not sure what my next steps should be. I have a fenced in yard where all the dogs run and play and the only problem we've had at home is Emmie sometimes plays too rough with my medium size dog. She pretty much ignores the small dogs and cats but after today I'm worried. I don't know if we can ever go back to the dog park with her and I know she will need to be muzzled-which I should have done in the first place! But even muzzled I don't like the behavior of running up on another dog and shoving her mouth all over them-which could still hurt someone. Has anyone else experienced this and what suggestions do you have to correct it since I'm not seeing progress! There's another greyhound at the park that will also run up on other dogs and pin them down so I'm assuming it's a prey thing.

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Your lucky you got off so easy. My girls are as small critter safe as you can get but I NEVER let them run with small dogs. Even with a muzzle on they can quickly kill a small dog in a blink of an eye. There is a good reason for separate small and large dog areas. Once they get that adrenaline flowing its easy to see something that small as a squeaky

------

 

Jessica

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Guest Lovemyhound

OK yikes.. I see so many things wrong here - I'm sure others will address them all. The one thing I would like to say this is why I HATE dog parks. You will not catch me there with my houndies, unless it was a greyhound gathering where all were muzzled (or none).

 

Best of luck to you.

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Guest Emmiesmom

Yes, we were on the big dog side but they had the little ones in there. She has never bothered the little ones before too-just medium to big dogs that she runs up on. Ugh...

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You got off lucky! Your girl gets along with small critters as long as they're not running. It's the same with cats, indoor cats are one thing but loose in the yard running is just asking for trouble. The other thing was even though she was fine with this little one standing still, any small dog being carried will set off a greyhound to jump and try to get it. It's the reason we never, ever pick up Jilly Bean in our arms. It's an invitation to a lot of greyhounds to jump at it. Personally I'd watch her around your small dogs at home in the yard. She may take off after them. She obviously has a strong prey drive. You're just going to have to watch who you turn out with her in the yard and as for the dog park, if you really want to go, go early in the morning or late when there are very few dogs. I would not muzzle her because if she does go after someone and they come back at her, she can't protect herself with a muzzle on and it will leave her open to being badly hurt.

Judy, mom to Darth Vader, Bandita, And Angel

Forever in our hearts, DeeYoGee, Dani, Emmy, Andy, Heart, Saint, Valentino, Arrow, Gee, Bebe, Jilly Bean, Bullitt, Pistol, Junior, Sammie, Joey, Gizmo, Do Bee

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Guest PhillyPups

I agree with all of the above. Just as with being fine with indoor cats, outside, all bets are off!! The breed is bred to hunt by sight and very fast - they can get a little before they realize that is was their buddy.

 

I stay out of dog parks for the very reason. A yorkie is NOT a big dog and should not have been in there.

 

I would entertain her in the safety of your back yard.

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Guest GreysAndMoreGreys

It's really going to be a hard thing if not impossible to train her out of this.

Because she is already in the act of doing what you don't want her to do by time you can correct it.

 

Running up on dogs and pinning them is not normal dog behavior. Unless they see it as a hunt and kill sort of situation. Her actions sound like they are getting more intense and that's not a good or safe thing for little dogs.

And Judy is right. A small animal or heck any animal being carried is a big ole red flag for most greyhounds. "oh animal is being carried something must be wrong with it."

 

IMHO it's best to avoid the dog parks or go when very few animals are there. It's only going to take her one time to piss off the wrong dog and it's going to get nasty, very nasty.

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I wouldn't take her to the dog park. You can't safely muzzle her in that situation, and her behavior is liable to get somebody badly hurt -- herself, another dog, both. Let her play in your fenced yard, safely muzzled, with playmates (also muzzled!) who enjoy her style of play.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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I agree with everybody else. Dog parks can be really tricky. Are there other greyhounds in the neighbourhood that you can meet up with?

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Xavi the galgo and Allen the cat. Missing Iker the galgo ?-Feb.9/19, Treasure (USS Treasure) April 12/01-May 6/13, Phoenix (Hallo Top Son) Dec.14/99-June 4/11 and Loca (Reko Swahili) Oct.9/95 - June 1/09.

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I would NOT take her to the dog park. Dog parks are risky enough, and she does not sound like a good dog park candidate.

 

Agreed. This dog has no business at a dog park (unless it's empty).

 

I would buy muzzles for your other dogs, and keep them ALL muzzled when they're in your yard. If you wish to continue going to the dog park, leave her at home.

 

I'm sorry this happened, and I'm sure you had no idea AT THE TIME it would. Now you do.

 

My George is one of the few hounds I've read about that is, even years off the track, absolutely intolerant of ALL other breeds. I can't even let him "meet" other dogs--at least on leash. He wags his tail in a deceptively friendly fashion, and then lunges at them. Very shocking to all!

 

Loves all greyhounds on sight without exception--and the only dogs who aren't greyhounds I can let him near are my parents', and that is only after nearly a full day of being in their house with his muzzle on, and getting the VOG every time he snarled at them. Once he realized they were not fair game, he's been fine. It's frusting I cannot introduce him to dogs on the street, but IMHO, better safe than sued!

Edited by GeorgeofNE


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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I go to my local dog park but I've learned I can NOT let my dog off-leash with small dogs (or even smallish) -- or when there are more than a few other dogs. This means I go around 6:45 a.m. when there are just a couple of large-dog "regulars" that I know Beth plays well with (two very confident Dobermans in particular) -- and responsible owners, even though that is excruciatingly early for me as I go to bed late. But I am committed to providing opportunities for Beth to run full out and play several times a week, and this is the way I can do it.

 

Greyhounds play rough, and of course catch anybody they chase -- and being bitey is a standard part of greyhound play. Beth has also flipped/pinned small dogs once or twice -- and very submissive dogs of larger sizes -- and also goes in with some biting when they're down, though she's never growled. I find that a lot of normally confident dogs get scared when a giant greyhound with its "crocodile jaws" as I call them zooms down upon them faster than they've even seen a dog go -- and then they roll over to submit, and that gets the greyhound more stimulated. So I have learned never to trust their owners' statements to the effect of "Oh she's fine, she likes big dogs." I DO think it's normal if a sort of overexcited play-bordering-on-prey behavior (they're still practicing bite-inhibition, which is marker of play -- i.e. they are NOT biting to kill), but it's not something that can be permitted. Meanwhile Beth is perfectly fine and gentle with small dogs on leash -- or if they're not running.

Edited by PrairieProf

With Cocoa (DC Chocolatedrop), missing B for Beth (2006-2015)
And kitties C.J., Klara, Bernadette, John-Boy, & Sinbad

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There has been a ton of hot discussion on GT about greys and dog parks as well as issues some greys have caused towards others in such parks - through no fault of their own, simply doing what comes naturally to them. I haven't done a poll, but I would say 75% of GH owners avoid dog parks for a few reasons:

 

 

1) small dogs in a big dog area are running targets for even the most laid back greys,

2) thin greyhound skin means they are often on the losing end should a scuffle breakout with any dog,

3) so many people visiting dog parks don't supervise their dog and tend to socialize and as a result, not able to interject when they are needed most.

4) above all, the safety of our hounds is at risk when visiting a dog park. There is precedent out there that a large dog attacking / hurting a small dog in a dog park (despite separate big / small dog enclosures side by side) is legally liable. Not only does the owner pay, but the hound pays even more.

 

That said, there are times, places, etc that are great opportunities for socialization. I would take advantage of those where you have more control over the situation, and stay away from things you can't control. It seems like your pup needs some more observation and coaching before being safely allowed to play in a dogpark. Prey drive is not something you can easily train out. It is pure instinct and mother nature is a lot more coercive than treats for good behavior.

 

Keep coming back to GT with updates, questions, comments. This community has a wealth of knowledge and will always have our pups best interests in mind. Follow your instincts and when you see the energy or tension rise in your hound, change the environment fast. Good luck.

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Guest FastDogsOwnMe

Even though the owner should be at fault for bringing his little furball into the BIG DOG AREA, that's not what happens. You got off easy... my hounds are muzzled at dog parks, and we know all the regular dogs and go to a park that doesn't attract many idiots (knock on wood).

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Guest mbfilby

As others have said, dog parks are not a good idea for Greyhounds. They are dangerous on many levels.

 

The pinning and chewing sounds like play not aggression to me. The problem is that rough play can kill a small dog very quickly. Our Mickey is the sweetest most gentle hound, but when she gets excited she plays rough.

 

Here is a picture of her playing with our beagle.. During play like this she will growl and bark. If you didn't know better it would sound like she is trying to kill the beagle, but she never bites.

mickchew.jpg

 

I don't recommend using muzzles at the dog park. It leaves your pup defenseless, I would avoid them altogether.

Edited by mbfilby
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Althought this is a long response, I urge you to read it. Hopefully, you will not go to the dog park with your pup to avoid something like this happening.

 

http://forum.greytal...formerly-of-ri/

Edited by RobinM

 

 

ROBIN ~ Mom to: Beau Think It Aint, Chloe JC Allthewayhome, Teddy ICU Drunk Sailor, Elsie N Fracine , Ollie RG's Travertine, Ponch A's Jupiter~ Yoshi, Zoobie & Belle, the kitties.

Waiting at the bridge Angel Polli Bohemian Ocean , Rocky, Blue,Sasha & Zoobie & Bobbi

Greyhound Angels Adoption (GAA) The Lexus Project

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Guest Shermanator

Sherman was a mouthy boy when he went to the bark park. I take my dogs to a bark park for socialization, and to let them RUN. I've done it for 6 years. Sherman was a super mouthy boy- he'd watch 2 dogs play, and he'd stand to the side, and try to 'bite' one of the dogs playing. Not really biting, but playing. Another of his favorite games was 'let's catch up to the running dog, grab their ear, and drop him so he rolls.' :blink: So, he was muzzled at all times.

I ALWAYS have muzzles.

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Guest BorzoiMom

I agree with most everyone that's posted, she's not small dog safe at the park. I watch the gate at the dog park like a hawk and will turn into a pit bull if someone lets my dog out. Several times people will be entering while someone else is leaving and dogs slip past.

 

IF you go to the park with her you will need to advocate for the safety of the little pet despite their owner. THEY have an area designated for them, YOU have NO OTHER CHOICE but to be in the area you are in. If my dog is being a problem and little dog won't leave, my dog gets leashed, then a conversation starts that my dog will eat their dog, and I have no other choice but to be in that area, my dog can't exercise around the living room, blah, blah, blah. It just takes ONE SQUEAK from a chihuahua who got in over his head and it's all over. I don't care if this person thinks I'm rude or a bitch or hates my breed because of my rudeness, I'm not the one who can go to another area of the park.

 

Dutch has only once been overly physical with a small dog and the entire time I was trying to reprimand him and talk to the beagle's owner, another bleeding heart was talking over me saying the were just playing. I had to get very rude to get her to shut up, wound up scaring the beagle's people to death when I shouldn't have had to. The poor beagle was not having fun, he was running for his life, getting pinned and squiggling on his back to get away. As far as I know I think I've seen the same little beagle in the park and they have been fine, but it only takes once to hurt or kill a little one, then you have aggressive dog status and are banned from leaving your yard - or worse.

 

It would be best to keep her in particular away from the dog park, little ones will always be where they don't belong unfortunately. For some reason their owners seem pretty clueless.

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You have gotten many good responses. For those of us with dogs that love to run, it can be a challenge finding the appropriate outlet. Dog parks can be good for certain dogs in certain situations if you are aware of the risks, try to minimize them and are willing to accept that odds are this t-shirt saying is going to eventually prove true:

6502967.6965141.jpg

[image credit goes to SCG & a talented artist volunteer.]

 

Though I am willing to accept some risks to my dog, I am not ready to risk other people's dogs over & above, of course, the usual dog park risks. I am careful which park, at what time & with which dogs I will allow my dog to run. Even then, I know there are risks aplenty. Whether or not you continue to take your Grey to the dog park is your choice. If small dogs being in the large dog area is the norm at your dog park then my suggestion would be to not bring your Grey there. This is one risk that is simply not worth it. Remember that it is usually the larger dog who pays, sometimes with their life, if a smaller dog is injured. As you found out through unfortunate experience, little dogs being carried often triggers Greys and many other large dogs to jump up at them. The actual act of picking the little dog up can be even worse. Will add that a human infant crying in it's mother's arms can trigger the same thing for a dog who is not used to infants. And I've had a few incidents where my dogs ignored toddlers until their parents picked them up. Suddenly the dogs became very interested. They only looked & watched but their sudden interest was certainly notable.

 

Remember also that the rush of excitement does not leave for quite a while, even if your dog looks calm. If your dog gets overstimulated & needs to be leashed you really cannot expect to safely let them off leash for quite a while, hours to days to never again depending on the dog & the situation. Better to simply leave immediately in those circumstances.

 

Outside of the unfortunate small dog incident, your dog may be playing or may not be when acting rough with other larger dogs. What you describe sounds bad but dog play often sounds and looks bad to humans. Without any of us actually seeing the behavior we cannot say what is really happening. PrairieProf's statement in particular describes my experience, "I find that a lot of normally confident dogs get scared when a giant greyhound with its "crocodile jaws" as I call them zooms down upon them faster than they've even seen a dog go -- and then they roll over to submit, and that gets the greyhound more stimulated." Though this behavior is not specific to Greyhounds as it is seen in many dogs, it may be more common with Greys. It certainly matches my experience with my Grey. It is not something I tolerated either. Which leads me to my next point.

 

In my experience, from my reading & from information provided by various trainers I have worked with you may make things worse by correcting your dog for these behaviors. (This doesn't mean I never use corrections. I do but the type & the way you described.) Our dogs do not necessarily associate the correction with the specific act we are correcting them for. These corrections you describe are usually strongly aversive and can cause your dog to form an unpleasant conditioned emotional response to the presence of small dogs not necessarily the act of jumping up at one. He could even form a reaction to something else in the environment. The emotional fallout is often not seen for quite a while.

 

If you find your dog behaving in a manner you feel inappropriate, you would do better to train in advance for your dog to come to you for something like a voluntary time out rather than using a correction. Do not use your usual command for a recall, like "Come", but instead choose a different command like "Time out". Do not make it aversive. When the dog comes to that new command make it a wonderful thing. Then do something like make the dog do a down. Reward for that then release to go back to whatever he is doing. Practice this in easy circumstances well before trying at the dog park. If you do this very consistently in those dog park situations you describe the dog learns that anytime he plays roughly he will be called out. If this is all just rough play & you are very consistent in how you deal with it you will likely find the dog does it less & less. Or he may start coming to you when he feels like playing roughly, sort of putting himself in a time out. Sounds strange but really works. It is important though to reward for him coming to you & reward for him doing whatever other activity you choose. And you should usually always release him to do something fun not just call him out, leash him & leave. Though of course there may be a time when you have to do just that.

 

None of the above though takes away from the fact that you may have a dog who is simply not safe at a dog park. If that is the case, he shouldn't be there. At the very least, he is clearly not safe with little dogs running.

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IF you go to the park with her you will need to advocate for the safety of the little pet despite their owner. ...

It just takes ONE SQUEAK from a chihuahua who got in over his head and it's all over.

 

OMG, that is soooo very right!

 

Dutch has only once been overly physical with a small dog and the entire time I was trying to reprimand him and talk to the beagle's owner, another bleeding heart was talking over me saying the were just playing. I had to get very rude to get her to shut up, wound up scaring the beagle's people to death when I shouldn't have had to. The poor beagle was not having fun, he was running for his life, getting pinned and squiggling on his back to get away.

 

Had a similar experience which helps drive home the point that so many dog owners are clueless. (As I am clueless in areas I can speak from personal experience. :rolleyes: ) It was very early on a Sunday AM. There were no dogs in any area at the park when we arrived. This park has separate large & small dog areas plus a run that adjoins both areas for any size dog. My Grey & a friend's Great Dane were in the big dog area. Some guy shows up with his Min Pin who he takes into the small dog area. Next thing we know the Min Pin is running up from behind us. The guy had gone through both the small dog & any size dog areas, & brought his little squeaker into the big dog area, "Because he will have more fun running with the Greyhound." :eek Are ya kiddin' me?

 

The whole event lasted less than 2 minutes during which time Venus was not playing nicely in my opinion. My friend tried to say it looked fine. I said I was not comfortable with the situation & worked to leash Venus without escalating the excitement. The little dog was not enjoying the experience at all though his owner claimed otherwise. Venus repeatedly chased & pinned the squeaker, though she used only her nose & not teeth. Poor pup was clearly scared, rolling over, curling up & trying to protect himself. I leashed my Grey & refused to let her off leash until the Min Pin was out of the big dog area. To this the owner explained, "Ah, it's OK. He is very fast. She can't catch him." :blink: I was speechless at this. He actually thought his Min Pin could outrun my not so recently retired Greyhound.

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Guest BorzoiMom

It's amazing to me how many people actually get pissed that you tell them to leave the large dog area. They don't realize you are looking out for their dog's safety.

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Guest TBSFlame

Yes, we were on the big dog side but they had the little ones in there. She has never bothered the little ones before too-just medium to big dogs that she runs up on. Ugh...

 

I guess I will never understand SOME little dog people. There is a reason they have a little dog side and a big dog side. It's to keep the little dogs safe. Please do not muzzle her when the others are not muzzled. I would not allow her to run in the big dog side when there are little dogs in there.

Edited by TBSFlame
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Guest Swifthounds

It's really going to be a hard thing if not impossible to train her out of this.

Because she is already in the act of doing what you don't want her to do by time you can correct it.

 

:nod To alter this behavior would take a lot of time and patience and training in a much less stressful and high stakes environment.

 

Running up on dogs and pinning them is not normal dog behavior. Unless they see it as a hunt and kill sort of situation. Her actions sound like they are getting more intense and that's not a good or safe thing for little dogs.

And Judy is right. A small animal or heck any animal being carried is a big ole red flag for most greyhounds. "oh animal is being carried something must be wrong with it."

 

Not normal dog behavior and not normal greyhound behavior by far. Small dogs and large dogs together is a disaster waiting to happen, no matter the breeds. It's for that reason that the IGs and the hounds have separate side0by-side portions of the yard. They can all be in the yard and everyone is safe.

 

IMHO it's best to avoid the dog parks or go when very few animals are there. It's only going to take her one time to piss off the wrong dog and it's going to get nasty, very nasty.

 

When I used to use dog parks it was at 0 dark hundred. I got up before the sun and got there in time to slip the hounds at sun up, get in a good run, walk to cool off, and a stop for coffee on the way back.

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Durn! I've been searching for a dog park. Since Desi's feet are so much better, I thought I'd find someplace he could run.

Now I'm scared to go. He does have a high prey drive, fixates on cats, squirrels, etc. Just sounds like a horrible accident

waiting to happen. Thanks for opening my eyes.

Blessed is the person who has earned the love of an old dog.

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Guest Emmiesmom

Thanks for all the advice-I agree she's not ready to go back to the dog park-if ever. :unsure I have been working on teaching her to come when called and have had success at the dog park but when she starts to play rough she has no idea who I am. Honestly I'm so mortified of her actions I don't know if we will ever go back to the park-with or without the grey. I've still been trying to figure out what triggered her so I can avoid future situations whether at a dog park or somewhere else. The owner of the yorkie had told me when I first came in that a dalmation had attacked her dog about 1/2 hr before, so I'm wondering if Emmie was sensing his scared timid energy and took advantage of it. I'm just very frustrated and since she has had no problems at home in a pack of four & cats(which is a blessing!) there are no opportunities to correct or train the behavior. Has anyone been able to sucessfully work with their dog when they are playing too rough? I will keep working on training her to come and follow advice-just curious if anyone has other suggestions to try.

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