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Old 03-20-2010, 04:36 PM
 
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That is why I don't go to the dog park anymore. It only takes 1 idiot owner, to ruin it for everyone else. Owners, like the one's you described with the Pit Bulls, who are repeat offenders should be shot. This is the reason I don't go anymore. My prior post says it all...you have these owners who just seem to be so out of it mentally like their dog can't do anything wrong. A lot of owners treat their pets better than they would treat another human being.

However, reading your story, it sounded like after the 1st little attack, you circled around and it happened again? I would have been out of there after the first incident. You guys did the right thing and filed a small claims suit as well as calling animal control. I love dogs, but if my dog were to bite someone or be as aggressive as those pitts, I would have no problem putting it down. Having your dog on a leash, around dogs who are free to roam, isn't the best idea either. You dog is going to feel trapped on the leash, and may put out a very aggressive/scared vibe that other dogs will pick up on.
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Old 03-20-2010, 04:53 PM
 
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Sounds like a horrible ordeal Opal. With your dog being leashed, I would say the other owners are by all means at fault. It sounds like the p.b.'s were very out of control, aggressive, and had no place in the park. Although I will say you probably should have left the park after the first scuffle. I feel so sorry for your poor dog, and for you. Thank god she lived. I don't know how you'll fair with getting them to pay the bills, but no matter how that turns out at least you still have your dog.

I watch all of the other owners carefully. Especially those with "tuff" breeds, because so many people get those kinds of dogs for the wrong reasons, and bring them to the park intact & with poor training, all decked out in spiked collars because they're going for image. I live in a small town, so it's been pretty easy for me to keep a mental list of the dogs/owners to avoid.

I carry a sturdy, wieghted hickory stick in my pack whenever I go to the dog park. Reason being, if there's ever a bad fight I can use the stick to redirect the dogs' bite while pulling them apart, so that they bite the stick rather than my hand. I've never had to use it- we have few fights at our park and most dissapate quickly. Another reason I carry it, and one I don't like to think about, is that if I was ever in the situation you were in, and another dog was latched onto my dog, killing her, I would use the stick to get the other dog off. I dislike the thought of ever having to use it in that manner, but I would do it as an act of desperation to save my dog's life.

Good luck on the road to recovery.
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Old 03-20-2010, 05:17 PM
 
Location: Middle America
36,463 posts, read 41,651,387 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djxpress View Post
Having your dog on a leash, around dogs who are free to roam, isn't the best idea either. You dog is going to feel trapped on the leash, and may put out a very aggressive/scared vibe that other dogs will pick up on.
This. The park we go to actually doesn't allow leashed dogs in the off-leash area, for this reason.

I'm not a fan of the dog park during peak, highly attended hours. As the weather gets nicer, we will only go during "off" hours, when it's pretty sparsely populated.
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:34 PM
 
Location: Florida Gulf Coast
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In addition to the things that were mentioned above, I was going to suggest a few others:

Don't try to leash your dog up when other dogs are swarming around off-leash. I've had problems with my small terrier doing this....guess he feels vulnerable, especially when the dogs around him are bigger. I try to take him off to the side when I leash him up now.

I'm not a fan of group treats. My small dog used to take treats nicely from my hand, but now at the dog park, he practically nips my hand off....because, as a small dog, he has to be aggressive to get HIS treat when people are giving treats to all the dogs in a group. And he really gets snippy if another dog tries to get his treat. I do use a treat only as a lure to get him to come back to me.

If you want your dog to run and get exercise, keep moving. My dog, and many other dogs, just stand around and do nothing if the owners are just sitting or standing and chatting. I have to keep walking so he'll run ahead, or dawdle and then race to catch up, etc.

I too go to a park that's not really an official "off-leash" dog park. All the people are nice and most of the dogs are, too. A few months ago, I was at a real dog park in FL, with sections for the small dogs, and more of a mix of types of dogs and types of owners. While in the large-dog section, I witnessed a horrendous dog fight between an unneutered male and another large dog. Even one of the owners got pulled down into the fray. So I guess my advice would be, when you see big bunches of large dogs coming in and you don't know them, follow your instinct and get your dog outta there!

Last edited by Avalon08; 03-20-2010 at 10:35 PM.. Reason: correction
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Old 03-21-2010, 01:12 AM
 
Location: Sacramento
2 posts, read 4,158 times
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Default good advice, all

I agree. I should have left right away. I was also foolish to have her on a leash in there. I wanted my other dog a chance to run off leash. I hate to feel desperate about finding places to take my dogs. I am sorry my dog had to suffer for my stupidity.My heart starts beating now every time I see an altercation with a dog, or I see a pit bull.
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Old 03-21-2010, 06:47 AM
 
Location: 500 miles from home
29,691 posts, read 16,462,697 times
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I'm so disappointed in our dog park. Twice I have tried to take Lucy to the small dog area and it has been locked and there is no one there.

The big dog park is right next to it - so I took her in there and let her run around (there were no dogs there).

But I would not be comfortable letting her run around the big dog park if all the big dogs were there. She's not even 4 lbs yet.

I hope they get the small dog park open soon - not sure what the problem is unless it's too wet or something.

Next week-end, they are having a 'doggie easter egg hunt" at the local city park and I'm going to take her there. The dogs have to be leashed but she will still have fun and she needs to know that there are other dogs in the world besides Ringo.

Of course, Ringo can't go. Poor Ringo. He can only manage to get along with Lucy.
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Old 03-21-2010, 08:44 AM
 
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
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i take bailey and dave to the dog park every chance we get ..... both are mid-sized dogs (55-65 lbs) and even when i am moving as fast as i can (my jogging days are LONG behind me) ..... neither one of them is moving at more than about a moderate trot ...... they need the time to RUN..... dave in particular.....

BUT while we are in the dog park, i know where each is every single second, who each is interacting with and how that interaction is going..... if i see anything remotely negative or aggressive, we either leave or go to another part of the dog park and avoid completely the dog(s) that were turning into a problem......
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Old 03-21-2010, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Florida Gulf Coast
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Quote:
Of course, Ringo can't go. Poor Ringo. He can only manage to get along with Lucy.
Awww, Ringo the Westie? My Casey (Westie) was getting along well with all the dogs at the park....he NEVER growled or snapped.....UNTIL I got Comet (Westie puppy). Now he seems more aggressive....running around certain dogs and barking in a snarly way. (Even if Comet isn't even in the area.) Maybe it's just an age thing....he's almost 18 mos. Or, maybe it's a Westie thing, ha ha! In any case, I hope it dies down, and I hope Comet does not mimic Casey's ways, because she (at 5 mos.) seems to love ALL dogs.
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Old 03-21-2010, 12:51 PM
 
Location: 500 miles from home
29,691 posts, read 16,462,697 times
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Yes, Ringo is aggressive - especially with other male dogs. I hear that this is not uncommon in Westies. We took him to puppy class and agility training - but even nearing the end of agility . . he was getting 'iffy' with other dogs. He does not do well with strange dogs . . but we did manage to find him a companion (Lucy) that he can live with so I'm happy about that.

He does ok with other, small female dogs . . but I can't count on only them being at the dog park.

That's ok. Last time we were there (before Lucy) people tried to coax Ringo in . . . but he was much more interested in walking the trail than interacting with all the other dogs. And there were two cute Westie's in there too! It did really depress me; but I think I've made peace with it. I'm just tickled that he and Lucy get along.
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Old 03-21-2010, 01:28 PM
 
3,651 posts, read 8,287,550 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djxpress View Post
Lately I just feel that going to the dog park is a train wreck waiting to happen. There are either unstable dogs that go there, or owners who do not watch their dog and worry more about socializing with other people
Pretty much sums it up for me. I realize altercations are probably rare most places and idiots who have no business owning a dog are the exception (I think), but it's not worth it. I'd rather just walk the dog around the neighborhood or a park where there's much less of a concentration of dogs.
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