Monday, October 24, 2011

Dog Friendly Events

This past weekend, we were at a local dog event, a fundraising walk. As people walked on by our booth, it was fascinating to see just how care free, and reckless dog parents are with their dogs.

Not paying any attention to their own dogs, people walked by with their dogs lunging and barking at other dogs, tangling leashes with others, and amongst all the chaos a couple dog fights. So many dog parents had their dogs on pinch collars, otherwise also known as prong collars, in an attempt to better control their dogs. However, when the dog ignored the pinch, as he/she pulled at the end of the leash, the parents acted as the sled behind them.

I had our newly rescued GSD there... who might I add, received hundreds of compliments on how great he was and how well mannered he was. People allowed their dogs to come and visit him as he layed peacefully on his blanket, minding his own business. It was a perfectly acceptable thing to do... I guess!

I corrected our dog, by using a verbal word marker "no" and then lured him back onto this bed for him to lay back down. A lady standing at our booth noticed me do that, and she came over and gently whispered to me "I saw you correct your dog... he was not doing anything." Then she turned to the dog and patted him saying, "oh honey, aren't you so sweet, I'm sorry..."

What a fascinating world of dogs and dog owners this is. Where by a barking, lunging, pulling, out of control dog is more acceptable and people will just walk on by minding their own business, however try correcting your dog in public, and you will draw an audience you did not even know was watching. I guess no different than a child huh...

Just moments later, someone walked by the booth two booths next to us, and their dog squatted to poop (I did not see this in action, but only witnessed the aftermath of it all)... as the person walked, so did the dog, leaving behind him a trail of 6-7 spots.
Not one person stopped him/her, or made him/her clean up... as a matter of fact, the only reason I noticed that is by noticing people's facial expressions as they walked by turning their heads as though something had happened.

Then, again, just a few moments after that... a lady, with a pink kids stroller walks passed our booth, and surrounded by her were at least 10-15 people... taking photos of what appeared to be so cool or cute.... of course, my interest was sparked too. We stood up to look, and it was her beagle, sitting on it's but, literally... front paws up and out like arms, and rear legs sticking out like a kids legs... dressed in a yellow had, mittens, clothes and then wrapped in a blanket. Every person she met, she asked them to share their photos on Facebook and make her dog the most popular dog on Facebook.... meanwhile, the dog sat their on his bum, riding in the stroller.

It was fascinating, that people found that to be adorable, and very cute. Despite the dog's evident attempt to reposition himself/herself out of being uncomfortable, everyone looked beyond that and did not question his comfort once.

As a society that practices responsible dog ownership, these are the times we really ought to bring out the best in our dogs, and assure our non-dog loving community, our dogs are well mannered, well socialized, socially apt, reliable, and trustworthy dogs... It is this that will enable us to do more with our dogs and have them be part of our society and family.

Dog Responsibly! It's only the dogs that suffer as a result of our negligence... not us!

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