In advance: This is a long one. Sorry.
Megatron and I couldn’t win at the dog park today. First, some couple kept talking about how aggressive Megatron was. The thing is, he wasn’t. I’ve seen Megatron be aggressive, and it always involves another dog acting somewhat aggressively towards me and he’s being protective. In this instance, he was being vocal and he was herding/playing. It’s nothing new, he’s a VERY vocal dog. He gets along well with other dogs, he’s well socialized, he’s been around dogs and people for as long as he’s been able to. Also, I ALWAYS keep my eye on him and how he’s behaving while I’m at the dog park and I’m always close enough that I can get to him quickly if something does happen whether it’s caused by him or another dog. So I don’t think I missed something that he did. I think they just didn’t like the noises he was making, but he was playing. Dogs can make noises while they play and have it not be aggression. He didn’t have an aggressive tone and didn’t have any aggressive body language. It just really bothered me. It’s like I took it personally like I was being irresponsible and letting my aggressive dog in the dog park.
Second, Megatron and a dog were wrestling, and I guess this woman didn’t like the way they were playing, maybe him being vocal again, but I didn’t see any aggression between them. Anyways, she leashed her dog up while they were playing to try to get her dog away from Megatron. Then when Megatron kept trying to play with it, (I was already on my way over to hold him while she walked away) she told me I needed to control my dog and keep a closer eye on him. HE WASN”T DOING ANYTHING WRONG! Dogs don’t play like people play. It can look rough, but they weren’t being aggressive and neither of them were yelping like they were being hurt. They looked like two dogs wrestling. LET DOGS PLAY LIKE DOGS. On top of that, don’t leash your dog in the dog park, especially while they are playing with another dog because that might cause a dog to become aggressive. I just apologized to her as she walked away.
Finally, I overhead someone talking about how annoying it was that the owner of the corgi wasn’t keeping it out of the mud because now all the other dogs were going in the mud and getting dirty and the corgi was getting her dog dirty. WTF. This dog park has a few areas that don’t drain so there are always puddles after it rains and it poured all day yesterday. I don’t mind if Megatron gets in the puddles, I don’t like him drinking the water, but I don’t care if he gets dirty. That’s what baths are for. And this dog park has a hose so you can spray your dog off before you leave. IF YOU DON’T WANT YOUR DOG IN THE MUD OR GETTING DIRTY DON’T TAKE IT TO THE DOG PARK AFTER IT RAINS.
And of course no one said anything to the woman who brought a tennis ball to the dog park, which, when she threw it for her dog it got aggressive towards any dog that got near the tennis ball…. UGH! Seriously.
Am I wrong though? Should I have done something differently? I was thinking maybe I could have missed some signs from lady #2’s dog, but if I thought Megatron was being aggressive we would have left right away. We go to the dog park all the time without incident and Megatron didn’t play any differently today. I guess today was not our day.