We had a bit of an incident a few days ago in a nearby park. I was throwing sticks for Nero, minding my own business when another dog appeared. He was a Staffie or Staffie X, I had never seen before. Initially I only saw the dog - no owner. From a friend whose dog was attacked a few weeks ago I knew that there is a dog aggressive Staffie x roaming in the area. So I called Nero and just started walking slowly away in the other direction.
When I looked over my shoulder I noticed that the owner had disappeared meanwhile and since she clearly saw us and made no attempt to put her dog on a lead, I figured that this must be another dog and turned around again, waiting for him to approach so they could have a play.
They said 'hello' ok and started playing a little but Nero seemed uncomfortable, which he hardly ever is with other dogs. I noticed that the other dog, while kind of playful, seemed to start pushing his boundaries. He is a lot smaller than Nero. I just had the feeling he was trying to push things a little to see how far he can go. His owner didn't react and Nero is far too big and heavy to be picked up so I just walked off. Nero followed me but so did the Staffy X. In fact he ran after Nero and bit him. While Nero yelped loudly I don't think he bit him hard. I couldn't see any broken skin or else and think Nero yelped probably because he was scared rather than hurt. Again. No reaction of the owner but at least her Staffy ran off when I yelled at him.
Today we met them again. Again he was off lead and didn't come when she called him. We (I was with the friend whose dog was attacked) called on her to put her dog on a lead, which she did with difficulty as he avoided her. All three dogs on the lead, they had a bit of a sniff but again the Staffy got more and more bold after a short while. There was a lot of clanking teeth, not much tail wagging but raised hackles. His owner seemed completely oblivious while to me and my friend it was obvious that this is not all just friendly play and that her dog was trying to get an angle on Nero (my friends dog is a girl).
I confronted the owner and reminded her that her dog bit Nero the other day. She was genuinely surprised!! She hadn't noticed at all, which I found a bit surprising since Nero had yelped loudly. Anyway, she brushed it off saying "It's just the way he plays. With his brothers and sisters they always play by biting each other". I actually don't think she took it in at all and I'm a bit worried now to walk there if she continues to not put her dog on a lead.