What is going on with Dog owners? I mean this is a very broad statement, most owners do the right thing don’t they? Yes, I label myself as a responsible owner, I walk my dog on lead, pick up after them when out & about, if we are at a off lead dog beach, I still have 100% control of them……………………. Yes, you heard right when your dog is at an off-lead beach you still need to be responsible! if your dog blows you off at the beach & you can’t get him to return 100% of the time, they shouldn’t be off lead! I hear you say “but he’s friendly” “he won’t hurt you” while in the meantime the dogs jumping all over its unexpected victim & the dog on lead is feeling threatened. Besides having no control over your dog what’s to say that he is going to bail by leaving the beach area altogether & heading towards another dog that is on lead or even worse leaving the beach altogether & heading for the road?
Off lead dog beaches are great if you have control over your dog! It’s a great way to let them exercise & really stretch those legs out, swim, fetch & catch up with their other canine buddies. Personally, I don’t like them, why I hear you ask? Well I’m one of those people that seem to attract badly behaved dogs, maybe they know I’m a dog trainer? Many times, I must cut our time at the beach short due to the other dog’s behaviour. Behaviours such as trying to steal my dogs’ toys, being rude by approaching my dogs in a threatening manner, while their owners walk ahead unawares of their dog’s behaviour. In fact, I have had several clients & dogs attacked on the beach, with no remorse of acknowledgement from the attacking dog’s owner. This is what makes me furious, dogs barking & charging whilst the owner ignores the behaviour, come on people this just isn’t on. You don’t have to be a scholar to know when your dog is behaving badly & instead of ignoring the behaviour, rectify it! You are responsible for the dog, not your young kids, apologise & put your dog back on lead, better yet train your dog. This seems to be increasing in our region of the Fraser Coast. Only last month an elderly lady walking her small dog in a on lead area of the beach was approached by an off-lead dog & unfortunately her dog paid the ultimate price & lost its life. This made me extremely angry as it’s just not fair, owners doing the right thing have to pay with their dogs’ life for the reckless & irresponsible behaviours of owners.
Also acknowledge & be respectful of those owners that have their dog on leash, you don’t know what they are going through or what has happened in their dog’s life. It’s also their right to enjoy the area without the threat of another dog encroaching on their dogs’ space. By letting your off-lead dog approach can cause conflict with the dog on lead. If the dog feels threatened it can’t escape due to the lead which in turn can cause threats of aggression towards the approaching dog. Remember all dogs don’t appreciate other dogs getting into their space. Wouldn’t it be a beautiful world if all dogs could get on, unfortunately that just isn’t the case.
So, what can we do to improve these areas for every dog & owner?
Be a responsible dog owner, keep to the rules of the area that you are exercising your dog in. That also means paying attention to your dog!
If you don’t have 100% control in the environment, don’t let the dog off lead! Although it states that it is a off lead area, you still need to have effective control over your dog.
Train your dog, find a trainer or local obedience club & start training your dog. it only takes less than 5 minutes, 3 times a day, besides spending more time with your dog, training helps build the human dog bond, it’s fun & will improve your lifestyles for the better.
Here’s a tip for a short-term solution: buy a long line, that way your dog can still have a limited amount of freedom whilst being under control. A great way to work on your recall training is by taking your dog to a less distracting environment & practicing your recall on a longline with some extra special training treats. Let the line out while remaining to grip the end of the lead, call your dog’s name, when he starts running towards you reel the long line in say “Yes” when he gets to you, & reward him with the tasty treat. Remember that dogs learn by repetition & patterns, have fun training & be consistent. Better yet if you would like to improve your life with your dog contact us on our socials or 0438469348 & see how we can help you.