Dog Park Socialization Good for Most Dogs
My 1 year old lab seems to have a peculiarity that I wonder if you have information on. We have a wireless fence so he doesn't go outside the yard, however dogs will not come into the yard to play. They obviously avoid coming into the yard. The few that do come in pay no attention to my dog. Marco will go up to them and want to play but get No reaction from these other dogs.
Sometimes Marco will not go near the dog, but rather act like he is afraid. He is very friendly to people and has only once become aggressive with a dog--a puppy that was a bit too rough; Marco was bit on the lip. At the bark park he does find a couple of dogs to play with and becomes the submissive dog. It's really not a big problem but I am curious to know what is going on. He is an AKC Lab.
In his fenceline he is eager to play with other dogs , but it's like he's timid and is hesitant in approaching other dogs. I've never seen such a submissive dog.
Nevertheless, we want to take action now. Shy dogs when they are younger can (and often do) choose more offensive behavior later in life. This is why some people say their dogs “snap.” The dog begins displaying aggressive behavior rather than defensive behavior. The owner didn’t see it coming, probably because most of us aren’t looking for those kinds of problems.
The dogs take turns. Marco may get chased; then he may chase the other dog. Marco may get tackled; then he may tackle the other dog. It's a back-and-forth thing. Some dogs prefer one role over the other. Just make sure Marco isn't getting overwhelmed or frightened.
The dogs take breaks. Play breaks may only be a second or two. You just want to make sure that one dog isn't over running the other one relentlessly.
The activity is loose and wiggly. One my mentors says play is wasted energy. It isn't efficient and tight like aggression. Play can get rough and noisy, but it's always joyful looking.
|© used with permission from Robyn Arouty Photography|
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