Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: I Need to Vent (about Off Leash Dogs)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Gippsland, Victoria
    Posts
    743

    Default I Need to Vent (about Off Leash Dogs)

    Disclaimer: I am having a vent to get this off my chest. If venting is annoying to you, please do stop reading right now. I'm not aiming to offend anyone, and apologise sincerely if I do so inadvertently.

    I am beginning to feel like I am under seige. There seems to be nowhere in my town that I can go and walk my dogs peacefully without encountering poorly behaved dogs off leash or not confined to their property, and it is driving me nuts!

    Tonight, my girl, Flirtt, has a dislocated toe compliments of a big golden retriever off leash and under no control whatsoever as he decided to bound over, grab her by the neck and bounce on her. I'm a pretty fair judge of dog body language and I will say this dog did not intend to fight or hurt, just play, but when I'm out having a walk with my dogs, we're not out there to play with any old dog who comes by- we're out to walk and train as a pack and I get so angry with people who simply assume that every dog wants to play, and that I'm a mean bi**h when I say I don't want their dog to interact with mine!!! (Then they assume my dogs are aggressive because I don't want them to play).

    Probably I should have let go of the leash as she twisted around to get out from under this dog (whose owner was 100mt away calling "Fido, Come... Bad Dog, Come Here" to no avail) and that was how she hurt herself, so I take some blame for the outcome... but seriously it's BULL you-know-what.

    I'm beginning to wonder if it is me who is in the wrong here.... is it because my dogs have breed specific problems that make them unsuitable to be in public (yes, they are Dobes but they are not dog or human aggressive and are very sociable in the right environment- ie one chosen by me), is it that I'm in the wrong for being concerned that off leash they might encounter trouble (like a speeding car, or a cat to chase, or a child whom they frighten), or is it that I'm just too narrow minded that I think a walk is a pack exercise between a leader and his subordinates that should be "done" with boundaries in place. Is it me? Am I too much a stick in the mud? I don't think so... but maybe I'm just dead wrong.

    I went to the local council to complain about a dog who rushed out and bit both myself and my boy, Villain, the other day and was told that the signs saying that dogs must be on leash are unenforceable and that the ranger cannot (and will not)- yes that is verbatim- attempt to enforce leash laws or enforce local bylaws requiring people to keep their dogs confined to the property! Yet, in other parts of the world, and indeed Australia, we have legislation which allows rangers to seize and euthanase dogs deemed to appear aggressive. Am I going mad??

    I understand there are many here who have dogs that they walk off leash. I am NOT commenting about your dog, or you, as I do not know you or your dog and cannot judge what is right or wrong for you. That said, I have to ask hypothetically- do you ever REALLY know for ABSOLUTE CERTAIN that your dog will return to you on your command immediately when not on leash? I believe no dog is ever 100% infallible and what do you do when you encounter that 0.000001 time when your dog does not recall perfectly. Can you, as your dog's guardian and leader control every single aspect of the environment you are in to guide and protect them? Of course, you can't even with a leash on, but with a leash on you have just increased the odds in your favour... maybe it all comes down to that 1 time it goes wrong to change a behaviour. That said, I hope it never ever happens to any dog or owner because it would not be the way to prove a point!

    I'm angry and upset. My dogs swim once a week at a dog pool, use a treadmill 6 days per week and train formally one day per week and informally the other 6. They are active and get lots of exercise, but I think the walk is integral to a balanced dog and pack and every single day I go out with them I encounter problems with other dogs. Do I have to start carrying a stick to beat these dogs off and chase them away? God I hope not.

    Thanks for "listening" and again, I apologise if I have offended anyone.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    305

    Default

    There was nothing offensive about that post at all.

    I'll try and keep it short but there are a few things I want to point out.

    Sure enough, if you had of dropped the lead, maybe the toe would still be in joint (really hope she's ok - keep us updated). Let's be realistic though. If a dog comes running up to me and Rox off leash the last thing I'm going to be thinking of doing is dropping that lead. We have natural instincts too to protect our fur babies, and who knows what would have happened off lead. They both could have run off and done more damage before you could run across the park. You did the right thing by holding on and trusting your instincts not to drop it.

    I think dogs should be dogs. Rox and I train, but we have play time too. Most people think that parks are play time and don't understand that you need to train in all sorts of places. This is just people assuming things about each other when they think all dogs want to play, or that all dogs at the park are friendly. Not all are. Roxie isn't. We still go to the park though. She's allowed exercise too!

    So the council said that even though there's an on leash sign they're not going to bother?? Why have the signs at all? Doesn't make sense. I guess there's another example of councils failing to follow through. I read something similar on another thread where the council didn't care. It's a shame. Without their support there is nothing that can be done.

    To answer your question (I know it was hypothetical) NO dog has 100% recall. If there is something fascinating on the other side of the park then you're just a lost lady standing on the other side yelling like a moron. Every dog is different but I would never guarantee 100% recall.

    Unfortunately there isn't much we can do about people who don't control their dogs, don't train etc, especially without the support of the council. The only thing I can suggest is walking the same route at around the same time and just be a total cow the first two or three times. People will learn to stay away. No, you shouldn't have to be judged because of what you're trying to do, but you can use it to your advantage.

    I bet if you did carry a stick someone from the council would show up at your door and you'd be reprimanded! :P

    I'm interested to hear what other people think. I've been harassed at the park and on walks by other dogs, and more so by ignorant owners who blame Roxie for causing the fight by barking at their dogs. Doesn't matter if she's on lead and their dog runs across the field to get to her. It's Roxie's fault, and therefore mine.

    I have no real suggestions on how to make this situation better, sorry, but I definitely sympathize with you and acknowledge what you're saying.

    Hope Flirtt recovers very quickly

  3. #3

    Default

    Oh this topic could have me on my soap box for hours so I will keep it short and sweet for your sakes LOL

    I do not believe ANY dog should be off lead with one exception.... a designated off lead area.

    My reasoning:
    No dog can be trusted a full 100%, at the end of the day they still can think for themselves and unfortunately you don't know when they are going to do that and ignore your command.

    When entering a designated off lead area, you take on any risk that may come from having unleashed dogs interacting. This is a known risk and taken by the owner. In an area where dogs should be on lead or confined to yards you shouldn't be expected to take that risk.

    That's me done, I hope I was clear in what I mean!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Western Sydney
    Posts
    808

    Default

    V&F-you really needed to vent out. Your posting has reminded me those unpleasant memories of similar situations. I do not have any expectation for dog owners any more.

    I also believe what this smart person said
    I do not believe ANY dog should be off lead with one exception.... a designated off lead area.
    amen
    I love cooking but I love eating even more.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Adelaide
    Posts
    12,581

    Default

    Victoria must have the worst dog laws in Australia.

    It might be time to call your state rep to see about getting it changed. Seriously - they're easier to talk to than you think and your story would be of concern.

    I would also send the vet bill or a copy of it to your local council representative and outline the problem with out of control dogs in public space. And point out that the law only covers for "dangerous dogs" and doesn't cover how a dog gets declared dangerous in the first place.

    And point out that "restricted dogs" are not the only ones that are dangerous to small children and the elderly. You make council liable for their lack of action or responsibility.

    I do think that the story that you got told by your council may be a pack of um whatever it took to make you go away and leave them alone. Again you might want to repeat this story to your local council elected representative as they often have no clue what their staff are up to behind their backs and get pretty angry when they find out (and sometimes fix things). We've got major problems with our local council staff not following the rules set down by our local council reps. It's not good but if you don't tell the reps - they don't often know and staff get away with it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Gippsland, Victoria
    Posts
    743

    Default

    Amen to that! Perhaps you're right and I need to STOP having high expectations of others, and just keep having them of myself.

    Incidentally, my dogs do get lots of play time with me, and other dogs.... Our training methods are play/ motivational, so I dont underestimate the value of play....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    1,014

    Default

    I hope Flirtt recovers quickly

    I'm a wreck when ever I take either of my dogs for walks as theres so many in my area who walk off leash when they shouldn't.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    589

    Default

    I tend to avoid most off leash areas as there are too many tools that own dogs and dont respect others space.

    SIMPLE FACT-Having control of my dog means nothing when others cant control thiers.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    203

    Default

    yer the truth is you can't control the other dogs and other stupid people haha, but what you can do is 1. try and avoid the places where you know dogs will be off-leash or 2. learn how to get dogs to back away before they get to the point of 'playing' with your dogs. there have been a few times where a dog has rushed up to me and my dogs. i have stepped between them quickly, stepping into the dog and told it basically to bugger off. moving towards the oncoming dog in a confidant fashion will usually at least make the other dog pause before continuing giving you (or the owner if they arent a complete duence) to get the dog to go away.

    i wouldnt do this in EVERY situation but it works well for those OVER friendly dogs ... and small white yappy dogs :P
    "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semihuman. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog." - Edward Hoagland

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Gippsland, Victoria
    Posts
    743

    Default

    Just a quick update; Flirtt's toe is broken. not dislocated. Which is actually better news, in my opinion. That said, vet cant do any more fo a broken toe than a dislocated one, bar pinning it which seems to me like extra trauma for trauma's sake.... so she's on pain meds, and doing quite fine. The bone will heal in due course as long as she's not too rough with it. Likely arthritis in older age, though. This young lady is so stoic, and accepting.... she's amazing and I love her!!

    (There's some pics in an album if anyone wants to see the terrible duo)

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •