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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I put this here in this section because Grimm's had on-lead doggy reactivity issues.
And, because if I can get any advice on how to handle meetings with others dogs-- I sure need it!


Grimm had just had his 1 hour gallump in a grassy wildflower valley in the naturepark we go to. Still in the park on the path heading towards going home, we saw a man and off-lead midsized dog. I got a weird idea, and decided to take a bizarre chance. I stopped and asked the man if his dog was friendly..said my dog was male.. and may the dogs please play? He said sure. His dog was unneutered and 5 years old.

I had Grimm sit... give focus.. I removed the lead... and said "Free."

He did what I hate-- he ran up to the other dog BARKING, hair all up, bum in the air-- wayyyyy too enthusiastic. More barking, more frantic play bowing. The other dog was shy at first. Grimm and the other dog sniffed, tails wagged a bit stiffly, Grimm WAS tense during the intro, but, before I could begin to call him back, he dropped his front onto the ground, bum in the air, and LEAPED away from the other dog, trying to lure him into play..and kept doing this bum-in-air stance.. he tried nibbling the other dog's ear, then darting away with a big grin. The dog began to play with Grimm. Then, probably in part since the dog is 5, he mounted Grimm .. Grimm is a geeky teenager at just 20 months, and very immature. The other dog kept mounting Grimm, and Grimm kept putting his ears down, grinning gently, then wanting to play. The other dog chased Grimm. Grimm chased him back. The little dog was the boss of Grimm! A good thing, I think. Grimm rolled onto his back, and then they both ran around and streaked all over the park together sniffing, tussling, chasing for fun.

Did I do the right thing? Should I worry? Grimm is pushy, pushy, pushy.. but caves if another dog says that it is the boss of him. (pushy means dominant i guess, but.. he is not so very dominant in reality when he gets called on it-- at least at this age)

Should I introduce a dog to Grimm differently than I did? I won't do this often, at all... I always fear a dogfight, even though Grimm caves when someone puts him in his place, because at the beginnings, he is so overenthusiastic and pushy. How can I help curb his overenthusiastic pushyness at the intros? Will time and experiences help? We will be in a dog class for 10 weeks starting in September. But, I do not think Grimm will get to interact with the dogs there at all. I may ask the trainer if she knows someone in the group or out of it, who can allow Grimm an occasional play date with their dog.

Your input? Advice?
 

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This probably sounds bad, but with my dogs, I mostly go by my gut reaction, so the protocol changes from one dog to the next.

Often when my dogs meet other dogs I keep a lead on initially but drop it. That way there's no tension or mixed signals on the line, but I can restrain the dog again if need be.

Honestly, I think to help is pushiness he will just need to practice meeting dogs. I think a combination of it becoming more of a common thing for him and possibly dogs that will correct him or ignore him for this behavior will help set him straight. A few weeks ago, my Coke was very rude and pushy to my friend's dog, which is rare for Coke. We put Coke in a time out to settle and then she brought out her older, no-nonsense dog. Coke tried the same things with him, but he just stood his ground, barked at Coke once, and walked away. He would completely ignore Coke unless he felt Coke was playing appropriately.
 

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Thanks, Lies. (i looove Coke stories!! I swear, he looks part LH GSD!) So, I guess more experiences will help with his pushiness? Okay.. that's important for me to know. Now I definitely WILL ask the trainer in September at our group class we will be going to, if she can set up a play date or two on a regular basis for us.

Thank you for sharing your experience and advice!
 

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Another suggestion - get Grimm good and tired right before he meets the other dog. That may curb some of his enthusiasm.
 

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Boy Lauri, when you're right, you're right. I really tired His Royal Heiny out today.. then he was able to do a down-stay, off-lead, about 10 feet from a waggy guide dog! Okay, so they didn't get to interact.... but, I can see what you mean. I wish it were always possible to have him tongue-hangin' out tired at the moment we happen upon another dog. But it does take some edge off, I think!
 
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