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Struggling with my dog's dog park aggression towards some other dogs :

.......not all dogs- usually if they are bigger

......if he spots a dog he wants to play tough with he will almost attach himself to that dog and follow that dog around waiting for almost any move to lite up his rough play button. This intimidates his target dog and often they demure and stay by owner seeking relief from my dog's preoccupation with chasing them

....loves to run the fence separating big and little dogs if another dog is on the other side of the fence - he runs flat out which is great exercise but I am fearful it supports his rough play proble. Tongue flying, barking wildly and constantly (only place he really barks-running the fence) he runs hard and has a great time racing along the fence.....doesn't stop until he is exhausted even if the dog on the other side loses interest and wanders away from the fence. He will continue to run the fence hoping the other dog will rejoin him running the fence. My dog.....DOES....get wild eyed and aggressive at the fence sometimes biting the fence and showing teeth-not often but it hapoens- if the other dog is no longer interested in playing fence run with him.

......dog park gate drama. He likes to greet dogs entering the park with his aggressive play energy which can cause a problems due to sort of restricted space. Entering dog feels threatened and things can go in a not good direction.

.....rough play is chasing target dog, bumping shoulders, barking/snapping in their face as they run along, sometimes body slamming slightly

.......many times, maybe most times he will " read" another dog in the park and then walk away indifferent to that dog as a play target. Same or larger in size, many times a pit bull, husky,, Shepherd is the type of dog he targets for his rough play

......doesn't seem to be a fighter. Despite his rough play he doesn't seem to start fights. If things go south from his play he will certainly lite up but almost always comes out with more scrapes and cuts

Otherwise this 2.5 yr old male and muscular pit is a good dog :

.......loves people

.......doesn't bark outside of dog park

......62 lb lap dog - loves cuddling

......house trained nicely

......we have a 12 lb dog in the house - they coexist very peacefully but don't play together

Desperate for help. My dog park regular ownrrs all like my dog and are tolerant but I don't want to be in a position where it is better if my dog doesn't come at all.

Many thanks for any thoughts.
 

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This sounds like regular bully breed behavior which makes them not the best types of dogs to take to the dog park. It also sounds like he needs more leadership and direction from you. If you plan to continue to be a dog park regular, you need to control this rude behavior. It will start a fight, and I'm surprised it hasn't already, then your pit will be blamed whether he was directly at fault or not.
If you can't recall him in an excited state, he shouldn't be off leash. Maybe practice outside the off leash area on a long line and inside on a long line when there are no other dogs.

Sent from my LG-H830 using Tapatalk
 

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Welcome to Go Pitbull Rivertender.
FluffyLOve is spot on. You don't mention what breed of dog you have but if it is a bully, please don't take it to the dog park. If anything does happen, and remember these dogs were bred to fight, it will be your dogs fault. It is your dog and your choice. I am not telling you what to do but please make your decision an informed one.

Please take a minute and read THIS thread.

There is a poem that pops up here from time to time, I'll save you the trouble of looking for it.

A Day At The Park

He is just like other dogs I would always say; He loves to go to
the dog park to play every day

Everyone loves him there, so it's ok; My dog won't fight--he
wasn't raised that way

But then one day, right before dark, A troubled young man
came into the park

He had by his side the biggest dog I'd ever seen, And
unfortunately for us, both were quite mean

We asked very nicely if they would just go; The dog answered
with a snarl and the man with a harsh "NO!"

Well his dog was a terror, threatening to all; Then he started a
fight with a Lab over a ball

They fought pretty hard and the man would not intervene;
Then here comes my dog and pushes right in between

He grabbed that big dog and thrashed him around; And with
one quick jerk threw him down on the ground

The Lab was able to escape; I heard everyone cheer; But my
dog was now in a frenzy and would not let me near

When he finally let go, what I saw stopped my heart; That big
mean dog had been torn apart

The authorities were called, the big dog was now dead; But
they didn't take the big dog; they took my dog instead

We all tried to explain that my dog saved the day; But because
of his breed he was taken away

You see my dog was a Pit bull and they don't get any breaks;
One small incident is all that it takes

A dog had died; And though he hadn't started the fight, My dog
was held responsible for what happened that night

He was deemed a danger to all and sentenced to death; And I
hold him now as he takes his last breath

It's my fault that my dog is being killed today; Please listen for
a moment to what I am going to say

Everyone warned me about his potential to fight; I said it won't
happen, I am raising him right

And now my dog is paying the ultimate price; Because I was
stubborn and wouldn't take the advice

He only did what he was bred to do; Learn from our story;
don't let it happen to you.
****

You have a chance here to learn from others mistakes before you find yourself in a bad situation. These dogs don't need dog friends, they just need you and it's other home pack.

Joe
 

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English staffy 4x4
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Don't go to dog parks, their are full of cool dogs and people, but also full of idiots. I got a situation while being with my mutt in dog park, she was playing with some american staffy, having fun, carrying sticks for each other etc.
Then came some guy, didn't asked about anything, just came in into the airlock, his dog was definetly trying to be aggressive to my mutt, did all the barking and growling showoff from 2 meters,then the staffy came in like a bodyguard. Everything ended up that amstaff guy leashed his dog, i took mine, till this guy have gone back from airlock ( he still wanted to enter, we told him we are finishing in 5 minutes, it's a small park with savoir vivre like that, if dog's don't go along, next guys in queue just wait with no problem, local thing ).
Guess what would happen, this guys dog propably would be bitten, then the police would take amstaff to shelter, not the other guy's dog. Other guy would be talking shit that aggresive pitbull attacked his cutie with no reason, and you have +100 people that are afraid of your dog.
And the second thing is that was amstaff, as far as i remember my pittie from childhood, he would just jump through the gate and scoop in to do his job if triggered.
lose lose situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Welcome to Go Pitbull Rivertender.
FluffyLOve is spot on. You don't mention what breed of dog you have but if it is a bully,j please don't take it to the dog park. If anything does happen, and remember these dogs were bred to fight, it will be your dogs fault. It is your dog and your choice. I am not telling you what to do but please make your decision an informed one.

Please take a minute and read THIS thread.

There is a poem that pops up here from time to time, I'll save you the trouble of looking for it.

A Day At The Park

He is just like other dogs I would always say; He loves to go to
the dog park to play every day

Everyone loves him there, so it's ok; My dog won't fight--he
wasn't raised that way

But then one day, right before dark, A troubled young man
came into the park

He had by his side the biggest dog I'd ever seen, And
unfortunately for us, both were quite mean

We asked very nicely if they would just go; The dog answered
with a snarl and the man with a harsh "NO!"

Well his dog was a terror, threatening to all; Then he started a
fight with a Lab over a ball

They fought pretty hard and the man would not intervene;
Then here comes my dog and pushes right in between

He grabbed that big dog and thrashed him around; And with
one quick jerk threw him down on the ground

The Lab was able to escape; I heard everyone cheer; But my
dog was now in a frenzy and would not let me near

When he finally let go, what I saw stopped my heart; That big
mean dog had been torn apart

The authorities were called, the big dog was now dead; But
they didn't take the big dog; they took my dog instead

We all tried to explain that my dog saved the day; But because
of his breed he was taken away

You see my dog was a Pit bull and they don't get any breaks;
One small incident is all that it takes

A dog had died; And though he hadn't started the fight, My dog
was held responsible for what happened that night

He was deemed a danger to all and sentenced to death; And I
hold him now as he takes his last breath

It's my fault that my dog is being killed today; Please listen for
a moment to what I am going to say

Everyone warned me about his potential to fight; I said it won't
happen, I am raising him right

And now my dog is paying the ultimate price; Because I was
stubborn and wouldn't take the advice

He only did what he was bred to do; Learn from our story;
don't let it happen to you.
****

You have a chance here to learn from others mistakes before you find yourself in a bad situation. These dogs don't need dog friends, they just need you and it's other home pack.

Joe



Hooo boy, Joe,

Many thanks for your thoughts.

I couldn't imagine why you sent a poem....until I read it. That is a profoundly moving experience and actually and unfortunately reflects an experience I had.

Many months ago I brought my dog into the park. Another dog raced over and attacked my dog and it was pretty much a fight. Got them separated, both dogs overall ok. Loud and uncouth owner came over blaming me and my dog.

2 nearby police came to the park gate responding to all the noise and asked what was going on. Loud mouth told his story...I told my story. One of the 2 cops was overtly, clearly not buying...actually indifferent....to my story because, I am convinced, she was eying my pit bull and breed judging instead of listening to facts. Cops ultimately walked away after seeing all was settled down.

When I left the park I walked over to the 2 cops and showed them my dogs bleeding cuts behind his ear that I had just discovered. They were suddenly sympathetic.

A close call for my dog given the breed bias and what happened in the poem.

As a result, the poem you sent definitely rattled me. I am now genuinely spooked.

My dilemma is.......how do I accomplish the exercise he gets in the park? He is actually a visibly and unusually well muscled 62 lb pit. I am not sure I can give him enough exercise just walking him.

We are over 70 and rescued this pit bull from walking stray on a sidewalk a year ago. Tried like crazy to place him...no luck. Taking him to "county" is pretty much a death sentence due to the wave of pits coming in the front door...so now he sleeps on the bed and is part of the family. Scheeesh.....didn't see that coming.
 

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So here's how I play the dog park game (or used to, as now I just don't) for those of you who still really want to go. And these are rules I abide by for both my dogs.

1. Stear clear of the entrance. If dogs are coming or going, I call mine to me and we hang far from the gate while all the rude greeting happens. I refuse to enter if dogs are running up to the gate rudely as well.

2. Watch first and keep numbers small. I will watch the dogs inside first. If handlers seem savvy and are actually paying attention to dogs, I will consider entering, especially if they have control. If they can't call their dog away from the gate, probably not who I want to be around.

3. Have an escape plan if someone with a rowdy dog shows up who does not seem to have control. I am always ready to toss my dogs over the back fence if needed and make a quick exit.

4. Work on the fence racing/fighting habit. Mine used to both do this, but I don't tolerate it so they now call off into a downstay. We have a trail that passes our park and it is rude to passersby and their dogs (or at least I think it is, especially when I am trying to walk mine and dogs inside are doing that).

But here's what I do instead these days: go to the frisbee golf course which backs up to the river and so is kind of secluded (aka, find a quiet out of the way spot). Keep hands on the long line if I don't trust my dog. Let him drag a long line when I start to trust him but don't fully, and stay at the back where I have room to grab the line if something distracting approaches. And we just walk and play and do our thing back there, just us. My dog does not need to play with dogs I don't know. He is powerful and if things go wrong, is absolutely likely to be a statistic. Plenty of dogs at the park guard their toys, their people, the water bowl. There is a lot to manage and I decided years ago it is just not worth the risk. Instead I focused on reliable obedience and especially recall, so we can go play elsewhere.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
This sounds like regular bully breed behavior which makes them not the best types of dogs to take to the dog park. It also sounds like he needs more leadership and direction from you. If you plan to continue to be a dog park regular, you need to control this rude behavior. It will start a fight, and I'm surprised it hasn't already, then your pit will be blamed whether he was directly at fault or not.
If you can't recall him in an excited state, he shouldn't be off leash. Maybe practice outside the off leash area on a long line and inside on a long line when there are no other dogs.

Sent from my LG-H830 using Tapatalk

Appreciate your input. Thanks so much.

I saw a young lady in the park with pretty good dog recall and she explained that she accomplished the recall behavior with.......a long line just like you describe.

Is it possible to get a dog trained to do recall from a tangle or excited state with another dog?

Since I don't trust him to return if off leash I guess it is incumbent on me to try for some kind of recall.

Many thanks again.
 

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Appreciate your input. Thanks so much.

I saw a young lady in the park with pretty good dog recall and she explained that she accomplished the recall behavior with.......a long line just like you describe.

Is it possible to get a dog trained to do recall from a tangle or excited state with another dog?

Since I don't trust him to return if off leash I guess it is incumbent on me to try for some kind of recall.

Many thanks again.
A high drive dog will be harder to recall when in an aroused state. It is up to you to work on his recall and know the signs of being too much for another dog, then recall him off that dog. Giving him plenty of training time on a long line is just as beneficial as letting him run in the dog park.
I also chose to ecollar train mine since his hearing isn't real good. It's a little added insurance on him recalling to me should he see a prey item or something else that triggers his drive. It's daily training. I watch Larry Krohn and Upstate Canine Academy on YouTube a lot to get help with training certain things.

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Plenty of good advise from 2DogTrix and FluffyLove. Exercise can come in lots of different forms including mental exercise. My fall back method, when unable to walk them, is putting them on a treadmill.
Thank you so much for the rescue Rivertender. I'm glad you found each other and it worked out.

Joe
 

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Dog parks are a big NO for me and my dogs, even my "social" and non-bully breeds. Many great reasons were stated. The fixation and targeting behavior you described should be interrupted immediately. Healthy play involves mutual and balanced involvement from both dogs, and plenty of breaks.

The thing about high drive dogs is there is no tiring them out. Sometimes the more exercise you give them, the more amped they become. I'm not saying exercise isn't important, because it is. But the structure and quality of the exercise matter more than the exercise itself. I'd rather spend 1 hr a day providing structured activities to my dogs (walk, fetch, training, hiking, nosework, flirtpole, tricks, you name it...) and need to work on settling via structure and enrichment (gates, crates, tethers, chews, food toys, etc) to teach my dog to be calm... Rather than let my dog 'run himself tired' with a pack of unknown dogs and only learn to be more reactive and rude around them in the long run.

Things that can mimic the energy burn and stimulation of dog play include games like tug, fetch, flirtpole, food play, and personal play (though I wouldn't wrestle with a high arousal dog). But even so, ANY high arousal activities need to be played with rules. Or else you risk turning on the 'hyperdrive' switch with no ability to turn it off. If you struggle with finding the right structure, activities, or routine for your dog, it would be beneficial to seek out a private trainer to help you with this.
 

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The thing about high drive dogs is there is no tiring them out. Sometimes the more exercise you give them, the more amped they become. I'm not saying exercise isn't important, because it is. But the structure and quality of the exercise matter more than the exercise itself. I'd rather spend 1 hr a day providing structured activities to my dogs (walk, fetch, training, hiking, nosework, flirtpole, tricks, you name it...) and need to work on settling via structure and enrichment (gates, crates, tethers, chews, food toys, etc) to teach my dog to be calm... Rather than let my dog 'run himself tired' with a pack of unknown dogs and only learn to be more reactive and rude around them in the long run.

Things that can mimic the energy burn and stimulation of dog play include games like tug, fetch, flirtpole, food play, and personal play (though I wouldn't wrestle with a high arousal dog). But even so, ANY high arousal activities need to be played with rules. Or else you risk turning on the 'hyperdrive' switch with no ability to turn it off. If you struggle with finding the right structure, activities, or routine for your dog, it would be beneficial to seek out a private trainer to help you with this.
It's just being your dog's best buddy! :)
According to rules while playing drive stimulating games like tugging etc. While i started them doing with my staffy and taught him to release on command and sit to wait for next round till i drop the toy on the ground and command him to play, he became more obedient with his manners in almost every part of our life, loose leash, stopped to jump on peeps etc. So if you utilize games in a good way you can profit from it instead of making your dog getting into roid rage when he will see a leaf moving because of windy day. I don't know if that works this way with pitties, but with my staffy works well.
Cheers!
 

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I would advise you to contact an experienced dog handler to analyze the whole situation to the fullest. And for heaven's sake, keep big dogs away, it can be dangerous.
 
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