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Since my dog is 1-2 years old (Pitti-mix) she is a bit "strong -agressive" when meeting and playing with other dogs. Its a pull contest when another dog approaches to say hello or when I just want to talk with a fellow dog owner. Therefore, I will ask my dog to sit when another dog approaches and correct this immediately when she lunges or pulls toward them. This is what we worked on in basic dog obedience class and it worked in class with other dogs, but i suspect it will be different in real life situations. Is it too much to expect a dog to sit or "down" when a new dog approaches?
 

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I generally make my dogs sit before they get to great another dog or person. It's not too much to ask your dog to sit. Down maybe though is a bad choice for dog greeting, as judging by your dog's actions in that post, which due to a little lack of detail I can only imagine would be a hard thing to inforce. Laying down is a much more submissive posture for dogs, and as such a dog with a lunging problem like that I don't expect your dog to lay down until she's very very well trained in that sort of situation. But a sit is a totally rational thing, all of my dogs have to sit before they can greet another dog or something.
I'm kind of speaking from experience, as my six year old aussie is a puller at new dogs she wants to meet, though it's gotten better it still needs work. What I do is, if she starts to pull towards the other dog or person I turn around and walk away, when she's calm enough to manage walking towards them and keep herself composed I'll ask her to sit, then we can go say hello if the other owner of the dog agrees.
 

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The idea of sitting is more about making the dog pay attention to you instead of the other dog. That sitting politely works well for greeting people, petting, etc. but, doesn't work real well for saying Hi to another dog. It's a submissive/vulnerable position..dogs just don't greet each other by sitting down face to face.

For the actual dog to dog greeting after the owners have said Hello, the dogs should be allowed to assume their natural stance, sniff each other and then either let them play or you move on.
 

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I agree with Tooney. Putting a dog's butt on the ground to greet another dog is the same as putting a bag over our head to greet people. It's one of the important ways they have of gathering information from other dogs. I would work a LOT on focus or watch me in increasingly distracting situations and get it down cold before even approaching other dogs.
 
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