I was having a nice morning jog with my Siberian Husky, when we were suddenly charged by a large German Shepherd.
His owner was not in sight, but shouts were coming from a nearby house, “Spencer”… “SPEN-cer” … “SPEN-CER” … over and over again. This was ignored by the GSD as he charged my Siberian who tried to bolt.
Since she was on-leash, she couldn’t, so she submitted to the GSD who was actually a handsome, and curious fella. He was interested in smelling her and not much else. After a bit of butt-sniffing, he decided to go home – probably in the hopes of stopping the continuous “SPEN-CER” shouting.
While no dogs were physically hurt in the encounter, I cut my finger pretty badly when my Siberian tried to run away. I was dripping blood onto the sidewalk, so I had to cut my walk short, and go home to treat my hand.
It is dangerous to let dog(s) roam freely on neighborhood streets without a leash.
- We were next to a fairly busy road, and the GSD could have tried to charge across the road and gotten hit.
- My Siberian happens to be a very submissive dog, so it is unclear what would have happened if the GSD invaded the space of a more dominant dog.
- Shouting the dog’s name continuously from inside the house does not help, and may even make things worse.
In general, only let a dog off-leash when he is in an off-leash park and only if you have perfect voice control over him.
While your dog may be friendly, or seem harmless because he is small, you cannot be sure of the temperament of other dogs at the park. To keep your dog safe, keep him within voice distance at all times, and call him back to you when you see other dogs, especially dogs that are on leash.
I have been charged more than a few times in my neighborhood.
Frequently, the owners come out running not too far behind their dogs. Sometimes it is an escaped dog who usually just avoids us. Whatever the case, off-leash neighborhood dogs are a danger to themselves, to pedestrians who may be very afraid of dogs, and to other on-leash dogs. If a fight occurs, there may be blood, tears, heartache, and a big lawsuit on your hands.
Keep your dog safe by keeping him inside the house, making sure your yard is perfectly secure, and walking him on-leash in the neighborhood.
Carry a cell-phone with you during walks, and perhaps even a walking stick, in case of emergencies.