Still in favor of dog parks? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Still in favor of dog parks?

Please read the article. The anchor was surprised that of all places, it happened in a DOG park! I wonder why.
Family warns of dangers after dog attacked, killed at park |
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 02:44 PM
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Never have been in favor of dog parks. Too many irresponsible, careless and just plain stupid dog owners out there. Just a recipe for trouble in so many ways.

A shame this dog was killed, and also a shame that it is a GSD that apparently was attributed blame... The owners are really the ones at fault.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 03:14 PM
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I know that one! I'm a local Oregonian and have driven by it on multiple occasions. It's a terrible layout and people are always on their phones or just chatting amongst themselves. Ugh. Definitely a shame.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken Clean-Air System View Post
Never have been in favor of dog parks. Too many irresponsible, careless and just plain stupid dog owners out there. Just a recipe for trouble in so many ways.

A shame this dog was killed, and also a shame that it is a GSD that apparently was attributed blame... The owners are really the ones at fault.
I don't even know where any dog parks are around here.....

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by cloudpump View Post
I don't even know where any dog parks are around here.....
I don't either, to be honest. I've never considered bringing my dogs to one. I drive through Manchester/Shortsville on my way to work and back every day and see a fundraiser sign trying to raise money for one in that area. I'm sure there must be at least a few in the Rochester area, but never have looked into it.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 03:31 PM
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Whenever I'm trying to convince someone of the danger of dog parks, I often link to this blog entry, from a local GSD breeder:

Dog Blog


I never understood what a dog park was all about other than some social free-for-all for dogs to play tag and games like children would. In the few times I have gone to dog parks, I’ve gone primarily to look at average dog behavior and human interaction. I have never seen anything that was constructive. In a lot of cases, I witness dogs chasing and playing tag, knocking each other down, running each other over, or less confident dogs submitting to the stronger ones. All the while their masters(?) sit idly by. (Ironically, when children behave the same way, parents always step in to make sure the kids mind their P’s and Q’s.)

For some reason the one with the “bully dog” is happy to see how dominant his dog is without realizing that this learned dominance may transpire against this master in some form, at the very least less adherent to training and direction (especially when other dogs are involved.) The softer or weaker dog goes through life being a target in its mind since - at the dog park - it is forced to submit to various degrees and while this is going on their masters allow it to happen. During the turmoil these dogs are establishing some form of dog pack pecking order and the humans are huddled around talking while their dogs are circling them. In the wild predators circle their prey and their prey stands still all huddled together trying to appease the predators. Based on nature and the category of species a dog is, how would the dogs truly see these people? Definitely not someone who would have any authority.

For Example:

I am going to clearly describe the chain of events that happened when I took a student to a dog park.

A few years back I was retained by a client whose dog suffered from dog aggression. My first question was “did you go to a dog park?” and of course the answer was yes. The dog suffered from high anxiety in the presence of dogs on the initial introduction and then leading to the aggressive response as being a conclusion for this dog. We attended the dog park she frequented. I asked her to take her dog out and work with him in an obedience format 200 feet away. The dog performed within reason and was responsive to her commands. I took my dog out who did not pay any attention to her dog and her dog showed a relatively manageable form of anxiety. I put my dog away and we proceeded to work within 50 feet of the dog park fence. Once we approached that distance, the dog became incoherent and the first thing he did was get on his hind legs, coupled with barking in a frustrated, high-pitched bark. The minute she tried to work on an obedience routine the dog became aggressive towards the dogs he saw in the dog park area. I told her to put her dog away.

I in turn took my dog out and explained to her that I spent time with my dog in a training format and the parameters of socialization was with me getting the final word. This allowed me to introduce the dog to other dogs and further, when I sent my dog, it recalled in the presence of the other dogs. I demonstrated this. I did my obedience routine and the dog did not mind the dogs in the area. At that point 3 of the dogs in the dog park ran to the fence and began barking. My dog did not react and so I sent my dog forward to them. Shortly thereafter the owner walked up and low and behold the dogs in the fenced area increased their aggression higher. The owner came by and tried to stop the dogs, and at that point the dogs began to re-direct their aggression on themselves and started fighting. I called my dog back and put her in a down stay. After all of that wacky behavior, the owner of the dogs asked why don't I come in to the dog park area and let my dogs play with hers. I couldn't believe it! This is one of those needy owners who doesn't see what just transpired. My response to her was simple, “I don't go to dog parks.” She asked why and I told her. The she asked why I was there and I simply said I was demonstrating with my client who frequents this dog park on what not to do, and that she and her dogs set the fine example of why a person shouldn't attend a dog park. I also asked the woman if her dogs would behave in the same manner if they were to get loose outside of the dog park. Her response was simply “I come to this dog park because I can’t let my dogs loose anywhere else...they run off and chase dogs.” With that I ended my training session and we would re-convene at this dog park a week later. I left my client to analyze what she just saw.

We went back to the dog park a week later. As we pulled into the parking lot we observed dogs approaching the park. The majority of the dogs were on their hind legs pulling to get into the park, and no matter what the owners did to control the dogs, they didn't exist in the dog’s eyes. At that point, I also observed with my client a group of dogs allegedly playing. There was a male who possessed all the sticks and when he had the sticks the other dogs avoided entering his space. This dog was in control. At the same time, I pointed out how the owners of these dogs were huddled around a table and the dogs circled them. I noticed a woman with a young poodle-type puppy enter the dog park. I looked at my client and said this is going to be a very sad, harsh lesson in dog behavior. When the woman showed up all the dog owners gravitated to this puppy and huddled together speaking in high pitched “ooooh what a cutie” tones. At that point, the dog who possessed the stick pushed himself though the crowd and snatched the puppy and began to beat on it. The other dogs joined in (guess who owned the park), and amongst all the screaming, the people managed to get the puppy away from the dogs. Once again they gravitated to the injured puppy. The owner of the poodle began to scream at the owner of the bully dog. Once this happened the bully dog saw his opportunity, snatched the poodle from the table with his recruits and finished the job. The puppy was dead. I will leave everybody with that image.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 11:17 PM
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Wow that's some crazy dog parks you guys have! The ones around me are almost always empty with the exception of one downtown
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2017, 11:38 PM
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See, if my pup was just attacked by a group of dogs, I wouldn't be hanging around screaming at people. I would be half-way to the vet. People are flat out dumb. Yeah, I didn't like hearing the GSD was the one that attacked. But they are very popular and formidable dogs. Lots of people have them that shouldn't own any pet. As much as we don't like it, some breeds in irresponsible hands are more likely to cause damage than others.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-12-2017, 01:55 AM
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I take my dogs to our local dog park nearly every day. It IS full of irresponsible owners. It's essentially a large grass field and they have it divided into two sections by chain link fence, dogs 35 pounds and under and dogs over 35 pounds. I've progressively taken my two, OVER 35 pound dogs there for shorter and shorter lengths of time. Some situations there give me anxiety, like when another persons dog displays aggressive behavior towards my male GSD and they're oblivious about dog behaviors, so there I am trying to prevent a situation from occurring while not being able to "handle" the other dog. No one follows the unenforced rules there (no more than two dogs per handler, no dogs in heat, must have tags for proof of vaccination, pick up your dogs poop, etc etc.). Very few people go there to interact with their dogs, they leave them unattended while they converse with other dog owners or text on their phone. I can only imagine how much attention they give their kids if they have any. I'll paraphrase a couple of my personal stories out of the seemingly endless that I have.

One time my two dogs roughed up a small, maybe 8 pound, terrier that another owner took onto the big dog, over 35 pound, side of the park. He didn't get hurt, but the owner needed an extra poop bag for his dog.

Another time I got bit on the wrist by another owner's dog while trying to "extinguish" a dog fight before it got out of hand and I had to go to the hospital. Lesson learned, if no one else cares about their aggressive dog/dogs potentially getting beat up by yours, don't step in. Next time I'll just let my dog encourage other owners not to come to the park I can't believe that a lot of people go their and aren't willing to restrain their own dogs. Not even call out to their dog if their dog is in a fight or potentially going to start one (growling at another dog or getting aggressive like nipping)

I still enjoy going there, but I go at times when there's less chance of conflict. I currently work graveyard shifts, so I go early in the morning when I get off around 6:30am - 7:00am on nights I work. I go their specifically for my dogs and to interact with them, a lot of owners there see me as a huge a-hole, because I'll ignore them and go to the far side of the park to interact with my dogs, especially with my male GSD that loves frisbee and isn't into "playing" with other dogs. I can usually get a good session of frisbee in at that time, because there's no one else at the park. It sucks, but there are also other owners/dogs I try to avoid if I see them at the park. I'll take my dogs somewhere else or go on a walk with them if I see those owners there. I'll probably cut the park out altogether if I can manage to move out into the country here and get a decent plot of land.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-12-2017, 03:55 AM
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Another thing you could try is a fenced in park/sports field before or after busy hours. I'm lucky enough to have one close to home and I've taken my pup their a couple of times around 7am and never seen another person. The walkers/joggers show up around 8ish when I'm leaving. I still keep him on a 30' leash because I'd rather be safe than sorry but so far so good
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