Meeting Loose Dogs While Walking
One of my Pet Hates! Dealing with a Loose Dog When Your Dog is On Leash
Imagine the scene: you are walking your canine best friend on a beautiful sunny day and suddenly, you come across every dog owner’s nightmare – a loose dog. Sometimes, dogs get out of their yard or cunningly sneak their way out of the door, but there are times when an owner simply lets their dog off leash to run free.
What do you do in this situation?
While my dog is well behaved, I know she is rather nervous around other dogs particularly if they are bigger than her. Even if the loose dog is friendly and isn’t looking like it would hurt her, there is always the chance that she still gets a fright and becomes even more anxious around other canines.
As a dog owner, you must be prepared for these situations. Let’s go over some tools to keep loose dog away from you and your dog.
· Use your voice: Loud yells in a deep voice will often deter an approaching dog.
· Barriers: Use your legs and feet to create a barrier between your dog and the approaching animal.
· Sprays: A citronella spray is harmless to dogs, but smells bad enough to put another dog off coming any closer.
· Sounds: An air horn will definitely scare a loose dog but it may also frighten your own pooch, so this isn’t the best solution to the problem.
Another good tool is to have is extra dog treats in your pocket. Most dogs will be tempted by a tasty snack. Simply throw the treats on the ground behind you and walk away.
Instead of relying on these tools, it is better to be proactive and plan on keeping your dog away from loose dogs wherever possible. This can be done by:
· Keeping your distance. If you see an off-leash dog, walk in the opposite direction and always stay as far away from the other dog as possible.
· Keeping your dog’s attention on you at all times so he doesn’t do anything to attract attention, such as bark at a loose dog.
· Choose a walking route where you can easily walk your dog away from any off leash pooches.
If a cranky looking or over-exuberant dog is coming at you, the main goal is to get your pooch well out of harm’s way. To do this, you can:
· Pick him up, turn your back on the approaching dog and slowly walk away. However, be prepared to be jumped on by the other dog.
· Use the tools mentioned earlier, particularly the dog treats, spray, and a loud firm voice. That may be enough to put the brakes on the loose dog’s approach.
· Put your dog behind a barrier. For example, if you’re walking around the neighborhood, there may be a fence that you could put him over. Make sure there already isn’t a dog there. Most home owners would understand your need to keep your pup safe, and wouldn’t mind.
Loose dogs are a danger to everyone and everybody has a right to walk their dog without fear of another animal on the loose. Keep your pet safe by ensuring that you always keep him on a leash and be watchful when you are out for a stroll.