Dog Park--mini-rant

boxermom

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
27,084
591
North Carolina
I don't expect any answers but I want to get this off my chest. Our neighborhood has dog parks and the signs clearly state aggressive dogs can't be brought in. I realize you can't always predict your dog's behavior, but in general we never have problems taking Sabo over there.

Today as people were throwing tennis balls and frisbees, some of the dogs went chasing after them like they always do. Sabo and a young black lab mix reached the frisbee at the same time. The lab bit Sabo on his neck, his muzzle and over his eye. No real puncture wounds but skin was removed and he was bleeding. DH was the one there and he and the other dog's owner just parted ways, no exchanging names. As dh was leaving another dog owner told him that the black dog has bitten other dogs. Well, why didn't dh or one of the other people get her name and report it? Our POA is so ineffective--they make rules and never enforce them, but IMO, she needs to keep that dog away from others and keep him on a leash at all times.

Sabo is a big dog but he was so scared:sad:--he is so used to playing there and none of the dogs fight over anything. Maybe we've just been lucky till now. We took him to the vet where they washed the wounds and said to use anitbiotic salve for several days and watch them.

Too late now to track her down but I'll be more alert next time we go to the DP.

Just needed to complain to someone.:rant:
 

Irishgal

I run with scissors
O.G.
Apr 22, 2006
15,381
2,782
Long and Low Farms
Ugh that is so annoying. Your poor Sabo, it is sad when they get bitten, it's like they get their feelings hurt. Keep a close eye on the wounds! Hugs.
 

chessmont

O.G.
Aug 22, 2006
12,111
1,844
CA
I am so sorry this happened to your dog it is not right

It's MO and MO only but I am no fan of dog parks, for this reason and also how do you you know the health and vaccination status of the dogs your dog(s) comes into contact with?

Here's hoping your pup heals up quickly and more importantly has no lasting psychological effects due to the stress of what happened
 
Mar 10, 2007
6,223
2,470
USA
I love and hate dog parks. There is always someone whose dog needs manners, and they refuse to see it. Then they run off and shirk responsibility.

My personal pet peeve is people who bring toddlers or babies in strollers into the dog park. WTF. These are animals, your kid has food and you expect him not to get robbed? You're lucky that's all that happens!!
 

bagnshoofetish

Oh. Gee.
O.G.
Feb 12, 2006
33,573
2,982
earth
That sucks, I'm so sorry. This is why people should not bring food or toys to dog parks. Dogs get possessive over both and you just don't know how aggressive another dog is going to be. arg.
The park I take my doggie to once in a while has a strict policy about NO toys/food. Even so, people still manage to break the rules and yeah, you can't trust all the dog owners at any park, thats why I don't go to them often.
I've found that finding dogs of friends/neighbors to have play dates with works best because the dogs know each other.
I hope your doggie is okay.
 

boxermom

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
27,084
591
North Carolina
Thanks, everyone. Sabo's wounds are minor, but when a chunk is taken out of him I get upset.

You all are right about the negative side of dog parks. And it's usually the humans who need a reminder of the rules and are the biggest problems. I hate when they don't scoop their pet's business, or leave the gate open and never even look to see what their dog is up to.
 

princess_riya

Member
Nov 15, 2011
190
36
Canada
Sorry to hear:sad: We used to take our golden retriever to the DP however due to issues with other aggressive dogs and their owners not watching themand even worse ..sick people putting antifreeze on the ground in puddles, we stopped going.
 

Collie5

Member
Jul 25, 2012
420
2
Northern California
I am so sorry this happened to your dog it is not right

It's MO and MO only but I am no fan of dog parks, for this reason and also how do you you know the health and vaccination status of the dogs your dog(s) comes into contact with?

Here's hoping your pup heals up quickly and more importantly has no lasting psychological effects due to the stress of what happened
DISCLAIMER...I'm going to state MY OPINION, gleaned from my PERSONAL EXPERIENCE, and am in no way trying to offend or insult anyone on their choice to visit dog parks, their breed of choice or their personal dogs, as I know there are exceptions in every breed.

I agree 100% with the above post by Chessmont. I'm so sorry about the dog attack, but I can't say I'm suprised. I too am NOT a fan of dog parks. I work in a veterinary clinic, and see MANY cases of both attacks, and diseases contracted from dog parks. Personally, I believe them to be a dangerous place for dogs due to the high possibility of fights and diseases. Not everyone vaccinates their dogs, and a dog can be carrying a disease that has not yet shown symptoms, but is contagious.
I'm also going to say, and this will not be well received I'm sure, but the breed of dog doing the attacking here was definitely not a suprise to me either. I have shown dogs for 23 years (and I'm a RESPONSIBLE breeder for 13 years) so I've had a LOT of experience with many breeds, over a long time, plus 5 years working in a veterinary clinic. I will say FROM MY EXPERIENCE, the most aggressive breeds I have encountered on a regular basis are Labs and Golden retreivers. Being involved in showing and being around so many breeds for so long I'm certainly comfortable around dogs, with the exception of these two breeds. They make me VERY uncomfortable and very wary. At dog shows I steer my dogs and myself clear of any encounters with these breeds, as they almost always try to go after my dogs and other's dogs. At work in the clinic, I have been bitten and aggressively threatened so many times by both these breeds, as have my co-workers. They are hyper and very difficult to handle and treat, and all of my co-workers in both the last clinic I worked at, and the current clinic will agree 100%. We have quite a few instances of these breeds trying to attack other client's dogs in the waiting area. A lot of our clients who own them have to leave their dogs in their vehicle until they are called for their exam, and then leave through the back door so they don't have to walk through the waiting area and have their dogs possible attack another client or their pet. I had to help an older lady take her two VERY aggressive Labs out to her car the other day through the back door. She was terrified they would kill another client's pet if she took them out the front door. I was white knuckled and very uncomfortable having to even be near these two dogs, let alone handle them. The chocolate colored one snarled and lunged trying to attack one of the vet techs for a routine vaccination, to which the tech replied to me, "This is typical of what we see with this breed" and shook her head. Again, I'm so sorry for the dog who got attacked. I know people think their dogs need to get out (true) and need exercise (also true) but I believe a good walk or a run in an enclosed yard is the safest way. again, JMO
 
Last edited:

boxermom

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
27,084
591
North Carolina
DISCLAIMER...I'm going to state MY OPINION, gleaned from my PERSONAL EXPERIENCE, and am in no way trying to offend or insult anyone on their choice to visit dog parks, their breed of choice or their personal dogs, as I know there are exceptions in every breed.

I agree 100% with the above post by Chessmont. I'm so sorry about the dog attack, but I can't say I'm suprised. I too am NOT a fan of dog parks. I work in a veterinary clinic, and see MANY cases of both attacks, and diseases contracted from dog parks. Personally, I believe them to be a dangerous place for dogs due to the high possibility of fights and diseases. Not everyone vaccinates their dogs, and a dog can be carrying a disease that has not yet shown symptoms, but is contagious.
I'm also going to say, and this will not be well received I'm sure, but the breed of dog doing the attacking here was definitely not a suprise to me either. I have shown dogs for 23 years (and I'm a RESPONSIBLE breeder for 13 years) so I've had a LOT of experience with many breeds, over a long time, plus 5 years working in a veterinary clinic. I will say FROM MY EXPERIENCE, the most aggressive breeds I have encountered on a regular basis are Labs and Golden retreivers. Being involved in showing and being around so many breeds for so long I'm certainly comfortable around dogs, with the exception of these two breeds. They make me VERY uncomfortable and very wary. At dog shows I steer my dogs and myself clear of any encounters with these breeds, as they almost always try to go after my dogs and other's dogs. At work in the clinic, I have been bitten and aggressively threatened so many times by both these breeds, as have my co-workers. They are hyper and very difficult to handle and treat, and all of my co-workers in both the last clinic I worked at, and the current clinic will agree 100%. We have quite a few instances of these breeds trying to attack other client's dogs in the waiting area. A lot of our clients who own them have to leave their dogs in their vehicle until they are called for their exam, and then leave through the back door so they don't have to walk through the waiting area and have their dogs possible attack another client or their pet. I had to help an older lady take her two VERY aggressive Labs out to her car the other day through the back door. She was terrified they would kill another client's pet if she took them out the front door. I was white knuckled and very uncomfortable having to even be near these two dogs, let alone handle them. The chocolate colored one snarled and lunged trying to attack one of the vet techs for a routine vaccination, to which the tech replied to me, "This is typical of what we see with this breed" and shook her head. Again, I'm so sorry for the dog who got attacked. I know people think their dogs need to get out (true) and need exercise (also true) but I believe a good walk or a run in an enclosed yard is the safest way. again, JMO
Thank you for sharing your professional and personal experience, Collie. Dh and I are guilty of feeling complacent because it's a *neighborhood* dog park. As you and others reminded me, it's no guarantee of responsible dog owners. Also I sometimes wonder if very popular breeds (labs, goldens, etc) may suffer from bad breeders. I don't know the answer to that one.

I've decided when we go for exercise (our road is very narrow with no shoulder) I'll drive farther to an area where we can walk on leash. Sabo can still play with the Springer Spaniel next door--they play well together.
 

dorcast

O.G.
Jan 1, 2006
1,650
473
I'm so sorry that happened. I hate the thought of your Boxer baby scared! Poor Sabo.

I also have a love/hate opinion of dog parks. I'm in the city, so there's really no where else to let the dogs off leash. Our dog parks are probably smaller than many of your back yards.

When Olive was a puppy, we used to go every morning (I'm right across the street) and there was a nice group of regulars. As she got older, she became a potential trouble maker, he can be aggressive to other females. We immediately stopped going, it was just too stressful for me, and unfair to the others in there to take any risks. There is a small section of my dog park for small dogs, and when it's empty, I take her in there, sometimes one of her dog pals will join. It's great when there's a regular group you know and trust, but there are so many irresponsible and lazy owners!
 

gazoo

O.G.
Aug 26, 2006
8,601
2,079
US
Poor Sabo. :nogood:

I hope he isn't too traumatized. People can be so lax about such things. I've seen many attacks/bites at dog parks between dogs and the owner of the aggressive dog is always so lackadaisical about it, laughing it off. I've yet to see any enforcement of rules in any town I've lived in.

Hugs to Sabo and you OP.
 

Collie5

Member
Jul 25, 2012
420
2
Northern California
Thank you for sharing your professional and personal experience, Collie. Dh and I are guilty of feeling complacent because it's a *neighborhood* dog park. As you and others reminded me, it's no guarantee of responsible dog owners. Also I sometimes wonder if very popular breeds (labs, goldens, etc) may suffer from bad breeders. I don't know the answer to that one.

I've decided when we go for exercise (our road is very narrow with no shoulder) I'll drive farther to an area where we can walk on leash. Sabo can still play with the Springer Spaniel next door--they play well together.
You are most welcome boxermom. :smile:
I was very hesitant because I felt I would be ripped apart for what I was going to say, hence my personal "Disclaimer". You are correct in that once a breed becomes too popular the trouble begins. My breed suffered big time from over popularity back in the 60's and 70's. Luckily, my breed is now way down to around # 34 on the list. I hope they stay there!
The health and temperament, which in many cases are hereditary suffer greatly when a breed gets too high on the popularity list. What happens is everybody for one reason or another just has to have one, so greedy people who know nothing about breeding, genetics etc go out and buy a male and female of those breeds and start "breeding" dogs to supposedly make money. BAD IDEA! (the old saying with responsible breeders is, "If you are making money by breeding dogs, you are doing it WRONG!")
They do not know anything they need to know, such as breed specific congenital/hereditary health conditions, temperament, and they do not research or even know how to go about researching the dogs in the pedigrees for physical and health defects. These backyard breeders and puppy mills churn out unhealthy, ill bred puppies and so many of the general public, who is uneducated about responsible breeding/breeders, breeds of dogs, and do not do their research into which breed would be MOST SUITABLE to them go out and purchase them. (usually from a newspaper ad or pet store-EEEKKKK!!)
Then the problem is thousands of these poorly bred dogs are out in the public. Labs and Goldens are the two most unhealthy breeds of dogs there are, with a propensity for more hereditary health problems than any other breed. (every vet I've worked with say these are the two breeds that mostly keep their business going) Responsible breeders try their best to research pedigrees for health and temperament problems before doing a breeding to try to minimize the chances of producing puppies with these problems. Backyard breeders etc know nothing about this and don't care.
I have never understood people going out and getting a certain breed just because it is popular, because a celebrity has one, because they "heard" it was a good breed etc. They don't RESEARCH all the breeds first to see which breed or breeds would most suit their lifestyle, personality, wants/needs in a pet. This causes so many problems and leads to many dogs ending up in shelters or rescues due to them being unsuitable for the original owners. And the RESPONSIBLE breeders are NOT the ones whose dogs or cats for that matter, are filling the shelters and rescue. I personally have a multi-page contract that gives a health guarantee, has mandatory spay/neuter requirement and requires the person buying the puppy to return the dog to ME, if at ANY time during the dog's life they can not keep the dog, for ANY reason, no questions asked. It is NOT to be given away, sold, or turned into a shelter/rescue. Any good reputable breeder should do that.
With over 150 different breeds to choose from, there is a breed for everyone if they only took the time to find THEIR right breed. Of course, mixed breeds are another story, since you never know what to expect with health or temperament. I have nothing against mixed breeds or people who prefer them. They all need loving homes too. My personal preference is for purebred because I want to know what to expect, and what I'm getting as far as health, temperament, appearance, size etc. I don't want suprises, I want predictibility.
That's why I don't believe in shaming people for wanting a purebred dog. The only thing that is imperative in that case is to go to a RESPONSIBLE, REPUTABLE breeder for that purebred. Some people are fine with a mixed breed, others like me have or need more specific needs, wants etc. I found the breed that has the things that suit me and that I desire in a dog. They are not right for some people but they are right for me. There are many breeds I like very much, but they would not suit me to own them.
Geez, I am rambling on and on, and need to stop. This is an issue that is VERY important to me, and I tend to get on my soapbox once I get started! Again, no intent to insult anyone, as this is all my own personal and professional experience. Please excuse me for going on...
 
Last edited:

buzzytoes

Dog Chauffeur
O.G.
Jun 7, 2008
15,807
800
43
6600 Feet Above Sea Level
Poor Sabo! I have a love/hate relationship with our park as well. Most of the time I love it, and I have learned to leave early if I see someone is not paying attention to their troublemaker. It's great for my dogs when everything is going well, but not everyone is on the same page as a pet owner and that can make it suck for everyone. I live in a rural area so I definitely have other options for exercise but I like the socialization aspect of the park for my dogs.
 

BookerMoose

Arrrooooo!
O.G.
Oct 21, 2007
4,107
163
Vancouver, BC
Sorry to hear about Sabo - hopefully both the physical and mental scars will be quick to heal.

We have basically stopped going to dog parks. There are a number of reasons, but the main one is the fact that we cannot be 100% sure that the dogs there are not aggressive and will not hurt ours. Moose had a chunk permanently taken out of his ear once by another dog at the dog park - and of course the owner of the other dog completely denied responsibility. It takes all of the enjoyment away from being at the dog park when you have to be constantly on high alert to ensure that none of the dogs is getting into a negative situation with any of the others - so now we just go for walks instead and pretty much avoid the dog parks entirely.