Re: Why are the people at dog parks so pissy?
Date: May 17, 2009 01:57PM
I used to attend the Reston Dog Park on a nearly Religious basis a couple of years ago. When I came into possession of my second, larger dog however, I ceased going because she soon outgrew the "Small Dog " side. She didn't like larger dogs (Not to mention that the "Big Dog" side can at times have upwards of 30 dogs, with some of them being far too rough and vicious).
I took my larger dog a few times during the colder months this past Winter (In the evening), mostly because there was a smaller crowd then, and seeing as she's an Alaskan Husky, she loves the Cold Weather/Snow. However, I always observe and talk to folks before I bring her in, just to get a feel for the current grouping there. When I used to go often, on the Small Dog side I knew all of the regulars, and they were cool folks (Real chill, and they understood Dog behavior). However, the Monitors could be jerks. One Monitor complained when my Husky began howling at her, and it was obvious that the only reason my dog was making noise at her, was because the lady was just standing there at the fence staring at my dog (Anyone who knows dogs will understand this territorial behavior).
I would say that if you have a smaller dog, like my JRT, then the small side is definitely a good area. Sometimes I run into fairly ignorant owners, but at least with a smaller dog you can control any scraps. On the larger side, you need to be extra vigilant.
Also, "A'rn", you have to be careful. You need to make certain that when your dog is playing rough with another, that the other dog has the body language which indicates their willingness to do the same. Some signs include: a bowing of the head to the ground with the bottom in the air, a wagging tail, back and forth action with equal give and take, etc. If the other dog has their tail between their legs, their ears flattened back against their head with apprehensive movements, etc., you need to break it up (Lol, sorry if I sound like a Monitor, I'm not).
BTW, just to give another example of ignorant owners, when I first brought my puppy Husky over to the park about a year ago, and she howled, some lady freaked out and looked at me with these wide eyes, asking: "OMG, is she a WOLF, does she have Wolf in her!?" Lol I replied: "Well, the more the merrier".