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I have a very well adjusted, very happy 8-10 month old GSD mix. He is a crazy puppy, but he is pretty submissive around other dogs and other people. He loves both, he wants nothing more than to greet every living breathing thing in the room. :)
We have no family or friends with dogs or at least appropriately sized dogs that would play with our Spencer, so we bring him to a dog park at least twice a week. He has a blast meeting new dogs and people, we have a blast, and he really tuckers himself out, which is an added bonus. ;)
Only, the dog park we tend to go to is about 45 minutes away depending on traffic. The park has always had well socialized dogs and overall had a feel-good vibe about it, but we wanted to find someplace closer as well. Turns out we did, it's 15 minutes away, so we went to check it out.
The place is empty. Okay, that's alright, we'll play fetch with him for a while. Spencer totally digs it, chases his ball, barks at a tree or something, and has a grand old time. A couple more dogs show up (one also being a GSD) and they're all running around and having a grand old time together. Eventually we decide it's time to wrap up and go home, because it's cold and Spencer seemed kind of tired.
We go to put his leash on, but the other GSD still wants to play. So I'm wrestling around this dog I don't know trying to put my own dog's leash on, and while I'm leading Spencer away, this dog is still attached to his neck and back and pushing around until my poor dog is almost immobile between me and this other dog. And what is his owner doing while this goes on? Nothing. Nothing at all!
I finally pulled Spencer away and went over to grab his water dish, and this same dog runs over, tries to lap the rest of the water out of his bowl and snaps at Spencer when he tries to take a sip! I turned around to ask this woman, "Where's your dog's bowl?" and she replies that she didn't bring one. WHAT? I know dogs will drink out of everyone else's bowl, but if YOUR dog is going to prevent MY dog from drinking, at least have AN EXTRA BOWL so my poor dog can at least get a drink SOMEWHERE. And still she's doing nothing about her dog guarding the bowl that I brought. I finally got it away from him, but sheesh.
AND THAT'S NOT ALL. Finally we're nearing the gate and I'm done picking up the toys I've brought, a new dog comes in from another gate (a pointer, I think), howling as his owner fumbles the gate open. The moment that leash is off that dog bolts over to my dog and starts snarling and attacking him! My dog is flipped over onto his back with this wild creature on top of him with its teeth in his neck! And its owner is just STANDING THERE until I looked up to him and told him to ****ING HELP ME while I'm trying to pull my dog out from under this monster. Finally they're separated, I checked my dog for any injuries (thankfully none), I swore at the man and left. No apologies, nothing at all. I was so mad, I'm still mad, I'm almost shaking as I type this.
I hope it wasn't traumatic for Spencer, he seems fine now. He didn't even seem shaken up to be honest, but still. I doubt I'm ever going to go to that park again.
 

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wow that seriously was not a good day! i'm sorry you guys had to experience the dog park buttheads. One thing i learned about the dog park back home was no matter how nice it was, if there were only a few dogs in there, it was time to leave unless the dogs were doing their own thing. I hope Spencer is fine at the dog park the next time you go. Maybe if you go at a different time of day the experience may be better at the closer dog park? sorry you had to deal with the idiots.
 

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That sucks! At the dog park by my house, most everything is already supplied aside from toys, so water bowl stealing isn't an issue. There's also a huge lake, so most dogs don't even bother with water bowls, but as for the dog that attacked yours, I would have kicked him in the head. If I think my dog is in danger, whether it's Ozzy or Sania, I'm doing what I can to prevent it. The other owner should not have taken that dog there. I would have socked the owner next. Jerk.
 

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He is a crazy puppy, but he is pretty submissive around other dogs and other people. He loves both, he wants nothing more than to greet every living breathing thing in the room. :)
If you want for your puppy to remain this way with every dog and person he meets, I very seriously suggest you no longer take him to this particular dog park, at least not when there are other dogs at the park. If he keeps getting attacked by other dogs at the park, he will not stay the friendly puppy he is now when it comes to being around other dogs. At some point, he will either start being uncomfortable with other dogs or get badly hurt, or both.

I know dogs will drink out of everyone else's bowl, but if YOUR dog is going to prevent MY dog from drinking, at least have AN EXTRA BOWL so my poor dog can at least get a drink SOMEWHERE.
I wish people would not bring bowls for dogs to "share" to the park at all. If your dog needs a drink, have a bowl in your car so he can refill when you are leaving, or have a bowl that you hold for him while he gets a drink. The idea of a bunch of strange dogs whose health and vaccination status you know nothing about drinking out of the same bowl makes me very, very uncomfortable.

And don't get me started on bringing toys to the dog park. It's great if you are the only dog and owner there, or if the park is big enough where you can have an area to yourself to play, but any time you have a bunch of dogs in one space and you add toys, you can see all kinds of issues ... posessiveness, aggression over toys, etc. It's just a really bad idea.

(Actually, that's how my Abby was attacked at the dog park. Someone brought a toy aggressive dog to the park and let it play with a ball. Abby just trotted past the dog, didn't even pay it any attention, and the dog just laid right into her. The owner went, "Yeah .... she can be kind of possessive of her toys." Ya think?)
 

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I wish people would not bring bowls for dogs to "share" to the park at all. If your dog needs a drink, have a bowl in your car so he can refill when you are leaving, or have a bowl that you hold for him while he gets a drink. The idea of a bunch of strange dogs whose health and vaccination status you know nothing about drinking out of the same bowl makes me very, very uncomfortable.
I'm glad someone brought this up :)
I get so mad and cranky when I go to the park and my dogs start drinking out of all the different bowls... they usually come home with the runs. It's usually the well-intentioned, responsible (but uninformed) owners who bring the bowls and water for their dogs and think nothing of it... then the "other" dogs get into it, then my dogs... then they get sick. (I know my dogs should be trained not to drink out of other dogs' bowls then, but good luck training them not to drink water when it's 30C and they're dying of thirst)
Our park has rules posted on the gates that state no food or water, toys or treats allowed in the park (I don't think the sign is very visible though) but a lot of the time, that's what start fights. However, people with aggressive dogs shouldn't bring them to the park either where they could be in a situation that's not good for either dog.
 

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I agree with the point regarding the water bowl. I wouldn't want a strange dog slobbering all over my dog's toys either.
 

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i have one of those water dispensors you can attach to a plastic water bottle like a travel size water dish you would have at home. and i discourage my dogs from drinking from other bowls whose dogs i know nothing about.
 
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