Socializing Dogs while living in the Desert

Living out in the desert one of our issues is trying to socialize the dogs. To do this we take them to parks and the occasional dog park. Dreugan loves dog parks that have the agility stuff..

When we go to a dog park we usually go in when it’s empty. Dreugan has a lot of anxiety towards other dogs as he has been attacked multiple times by other dogs (Not in a dog park, but while walking him on a leash).

We took Dreugan and Amigo to a dog park in a town near us, it had been empty when we got there, so we took the opportunity. Just as we let the boys off leash a man comes with 4 Boston terriers, as he’s walking to the gate his dog barks and charges the fence at Dreugan which sets him off. Right away we go to put the leash back on Dreugan, the guy with the Boston’s doesn’t slow down at all to give us time to leash Dreugan. But we luckily got him leashed up and started to walk to the opposite side of the park (This is a pretty good size park). While walking I told Brent this could be good for Dreugan (Thinking the guy would take his dogs the opposite direction) as the Boston’s would play, and Dreugan would realize they wouldn’t hurt him.

But no the guys walk through the gates and let them go, never saying anything to them. The dogs beeline it straight to us. 2 of them pouncing poor Amigo and bigger one coming for Dreugan. I was pulling Dreugan back as I envisioned a dead Boston. Remind you Dreugan is over 100 lbs… But Dreugan didn’t do anything he kept backing up. Brent and I stepped between our dogs and the Boston’s, at which time they head back to their humane (their humane never called them back). We try moving further away as the only way out is where the Boston’s and guy is standing. But the Boston’s were only gone a few seconds before heading right back at us.. Again the one went right for Dreugan and the other 2 after Amigo. This time though Dreugan wasn’t taking it as the one trying to bite me, but I was able to keep Dreugan under control long enough for Brent to pull the Boston away and yell at the guy to get his dogs before they got hurt. At which the Boston owner replied “this is a dog park”… He had called them back at that point and we had hoped he would move away from the gate so we could leave, but nope..The Boston’s made one more attempt to come towards us.. But this time Brent told the guy if he didn’t get them under control, and they came back again they will get hurt.. At that point the guy leashed them up and left all the while saying we had no right having an aggressive dog in the park.

If he would have given us a chance we would have left, ours were leashed, we gave him plenty of space. But I do have to say I was impressed with Dreugan, he could have hurt the Boston, but didn’t even try or threaten until the Boston tried to bite me, that’s when he snarled.

It really upset me, I was hoping for a learning experience for Dreugan, even though he handled it okay, I feel it did not help his anxiety.

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