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  • Writer's pictureDebbie Tayler

Encountering a "new to you" dog while you are out with your dog

You may encounter a "new to you" offleash dog at some point when you are out with your dog. I want to help you evaluate whether the dog is a potential threat.

If the dog displays a direct eye-to-eye stare, ears definitely forward (combined with bared teeth and a wrinkled nose), piloerection (hackles raised), and a tail horizontally straight out, pointing away from the body, you are probably in trouble. The dog is showing signs of aggression. However, most dogs really do just want to say hi and find out who your dog is, they are not out to start a fight.

The first rule is always to stay calm and assertive. Stand still so the dog does not see you as a threat. Do not start yelling and screaming because that will escalate the situation. Keep your leash loose so you don't send bad energy to your dog. Face the oncoming dog, but don't make eye contact. Claim your space and wait for the dog to leave.

I've attached a link that discusses how to stop a dog fight.

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