Speaking From A dog’s Point of View…Until Dogs Can Speak for Themselves, You Have to
“I love balanced attention and affection from my owner, but not so much from strangers or people I don’t know.”
Strangers Approaching Me on the Street…
When a stranger approaches me on the street, I don’t know who you are. When you’re staring at me, you make me feel uncomfortable.
I give you all the signals and still you don’t seem to understand that I don’t want you touching me because I don’t know you.
I look up at my owner or the person that is walking me to see if she or he is going to help me. It doesn’t seem like they’re paying attention to what’s going on.
What I’m trying to say is ‘I don’t feel safe’. ‘Remember I am on a leash I can’t get away. I’m being told to sit and not to move. And someone’s coming at me I don’t know who they are. I’m fearful of my life. I can’t run away because the leash is on me.’
I am waiting for you to take care of me. Please have the person stop and move away from me. It would be respectful,
Would you let someone off the street that does not know you touch you?
I have witnessed strangers with strange smells walk up to me on a leash. From your point of view, (owners) it looks perfect. From my point of view (dog) I see a different story.
It isn’t a good story. Would most people feel, if you walk straight up on them and start touching them? Would you have a problem with that?
But you hear people say that I’m good with dogs and I like dogs.
Most people will start trying to pet me and get up right near me. I am uncomfortable. I don’t like strangers putting their hands all over me. I feel uncomfortable with some kids but they are noisy, eating stuff that smells good, move wildly. They screech and make loud sounds. Please keep me safe. Please protect me and understand where I am coming from.
There is about 4 million people approximately bit every year.
If a pack of wolves or coyotes go into an area they’re not supposed to they will get kicked out.
So they have different areas to protect. A homeless dog will try to move away from you to avoid biting you.
Majority of dogs that are homeless street dogs, or wild dogs understand it and it is hardwired in them.
As a Dog Behaviorist…I have a test for you.
I have about 40,000 pictures on the net (Yelp, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook), Google Plus, Do you think you could go up and pet one of these dogs?
Dogs always give off a body language that most people don’t understand. The only advice I would have if you had a dog that was little bit fearful and scared of other people, put a jacket on the dog that says “Do not touch.”
So what I am really saying for humans is to be respectful and not put your hands on someone else’s dog that you do not know.
After reading dog body language and rehabilitating dogs for 30 years, I’ve seen too many incidents where it was fine for the first 45 minutes. The dog was laying down getting pet by someone. After that person was done petting them the dog bit the person. So I say not a good idea. Some dogs are just perfect and have no problems whatsoever. But I want my dog to be into me more than other dogs or other people. Imagine having your dog so into you that all he pays attention to is you.
Oftentimes I hear people say ” I trust my dog.” We don’t want to teach the dog how to use his teeth to fix problems.
So, at the end of the day my advice is don’t put your dog in a situation where you’re not making decisions. If you don’t make decisions than your dog will have to make a decision. Oftentimes, as you know, dog’s don’t always make the best decisions when they feel backed into a corner. This could cost your dog his life or his freedom. He could lose his home with you. Remember, until dogs can speak for themselves, you have to.
Stay safe everyone. Be safe. Respect your dog.
Leonard Ludovico Copyright 2020