Dog Etiquette and Manners

 

I often wonder what has happened to common courtesy towards others and the disappearance of manners in our culture.  I sometimes think it’s because we are all so busy trying to fit everything into one day that we forget to say please and thank you anymore or think about how our actions affect other people. The sad thing about this is it seems to have carried over to our pets too.

I think it is very important for dog owners to be responsible and courteous with other dogs and their owners. A dog owner should always ask you if your dog is friendly before allowing their pet to go over to your dog.    I think to not ask the owner is not only very poor dog etiquette, but can also be very dangerous. There have been many times when I was walking a dog and the other dog owner would allow their pet to walk towards my dog and say “Oh it’s ok,  she/he is friendly” but never asked if my dog was friendly or if I wanted the interaction with their pet.  What if my dog is not friendly with other dogs? What would happen if that dog got within biting range of an unfriendly dog?  Some dogs are not comfortable when another animal runs over to them or are shy by nature.   A shy dog might feel they need to protect themselves from something they see as an aggressive act. There is also the fact that some breeds of dogs are naturally reticent and are wary of strangers whether the human or dog kind.

I wonder how you would react to another person running over and very excitedly saying hello.  Wouldn’t you back up and say to yourself “whoa, who the heck is this”?   When you first meet someone would you like it if they stand extremely close to you, practically nose to nose?  I think its human nature to step back and put more space between you and the other person.  Well, why should it be any different for your dog?

The only difference is that dogs cannot verbalize their feelings like humans can.  If they are feeling threatened, shy, or uncomfortable they will react accordingly.  I think it is the responsibility of the dog owner to protect their dogs from being put in an awkward or dangerous situation. Your dog depends on you!!

I think we should remember our “dog etiquette and common courtesy” whenever we meet other dogs and their owners.

Please be respectful of other dog’s personal space and always ask if it is ok with the owner before letting your pet meet a new dog!!

Bark Control Dog Collars The good and the bad !

 

Most dog owners have heard about Bark Control Dog Collars.  The question is have we actually done research into these collars or are we believing the hype in advertising ads? To shock or not to shock, that is the question.

If you investigate the collars that are available for sale on line you will see descriptions such as …… when a dog barks he receives a safe but bothersome static correction …… intensity increases with excessive barking …… length of vibration (correction) is random and interrupts dog barking.  What does random mean?  one second of correction or three minutes of correction, after all, it is random. What does bothersome mean?  One collar even advertises that the correction adjusts to a dog’s temperament. The dog might think, Hey what the heck was that and get a little scared and depending on how the collar interprets that feeling …. gives another correction?  

Then there are collars that emit ultrasonic tones that are only heard by your dog and are supposedly so startled they stop barking (is that because it  hurts?)  but if they exhibit improper (what does improper mean?) behavior as a result, stop use immediately.  There are also collars, believe it or not,  that emit a citronella scented spray.  Apparently the dog will find it bothersome to their heightened sense of smell. I wonder if any of the dogs had a reaction to the spray and needed medical attention. I do hope the owners were there if  this happened.  Citronella contains insect repellent, alcohol, and air conditioning coolant.  I certainly would not want to be sprayed with anything containing Citronella.  Would you?  Electronic  devices sometimes malfunction.  I wonder if any control collars have malfunctioned and what happens when they do?

Some of us live in apartment complex’s or homes very close to our neighbors, and while I certainly understand a neighbor not wanting to hear a dog constantly barking, I think we also have to realize that a dog barking at an unfamiliar noise in their environment and to warn someone away from their home, or a puppy who is lonely and has not yet adapted to their new home is NORMAL.  Dogs have always protected their space and warned off intruders, human or animal,  since the beginning of time. I certainly would not want someone to spray me or put a shock collar on me for talking or protecting my home.

 A good alternative to shock collars is to perhaps have someone walk your pet to release pent up energy and help to  relax your dog.  I would also put an article of your clothing into the the crate with your dog or puppy (it should have your scent on it) which helps to comfort the dog. It is always a good idea to have something safe for them to chew on as well such as a Kong, etc.   Last,  but MOST IMPORTANT,  in my opinion,  is to leave a television or radio on for your dog.  You can put on a channel with people talking like the cooking channel (don’t laugh, it really works) or even cartoons.  Dogs actually do watch TV and follow movement in the cartoons and the high pitched voices.  Although you can try CNN  too!  The sound of the TV or soothing music relieves the quietness of your home and helps to prevent your pet from hearing all the noises that causes them to bark.

I know we all love our pets and want only the best for them!

 

 

 

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