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Discussion Starter #1
I'd like some of your advice on how to handle people around my pup. For example, I often have it that people will let my pup misbehave because she is cute. She bites them too hard, jumps all over them and yanks their hair, their response being "oh, I don't mind!" and then with a usually high hyper voice baby talking her - making her more hyper. I have often responded to "I don't mind" with "well, I do" but it is extremely uncomfortable!

Another part that makes me uncomfortable is that the people at the dog park feed each other's dogs. My boyfriend and I feed our pup not only because it helps with training, but to keep her diet stable and prevents her from begging when we have visitors. She's doing brilliantly - but when other people come into the picture I am not sure how to control the situation but not be hostile at the same time. I am used to working with my dogs one-on-one because I've always lived on a big farm and this is the first time that other people and their dogs are often involved. Are there any useful tips you guys can give me?

By the way, I am not the type of person to be really overly nice to people, so being extremely polite doesn't work for me! I am also not rude, but I'm not sweet enough to rot people's teeth out. ;)
 

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I think you should correct your dog in those situations regardless of how the people feel it is your dog. If you are attempting to correct her and others are not cooperating then you could try and explain to them that unless they follow your rules you wont allow them to play with your puppy.

As far as the feeding the dog at the dog park can't you tell the people when you see them trying to feed your dog not to? Maybe explain she's on a specific diet and they are messing with that. I don't understand why they would think that is okay behavior because I've read of so many dogs having allergies to certain ingredients they could have a big liability issue on their hands if someones dog gets sick!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I think you should correct your dog in those situations regardless of how the people feel it is your dog. If you are attempting to correct her and others are not cooperating then you could try and explain to them that unless they follow your rules you wont allow them to play with your puppy.

As far as the feeding the dog at the dog park can't you tell the people when you see them trying to feed your dog not to? Maybe explain she's on a specific diet and they are messing with that. I don't understand why they would think that is okay behavior because I've read of so many dogs having allergies to certain ingredients they could have a big liability issue on their hands if someones dog gets sick!

Yeah, I've told them that I'd prefer them NOT to feed my dog due to dietary and disciplinary reasons, but one of the women actually proceeded to secretly feed her that I knew after a while that my dog kept begging around her, and then seeing her "drop" a piece of food on the floor when she thought I wasn't watching and talking to one of the other people at the park. I just do not know what to do! I've explained it, and I am afraid when I get angry (which I will get because I am not a very patient person with these people) they are going to see me as this 'bad' person! I know I shouldn't care, but I find it difficult when they are like the biggest gossip group of our town and can spread their poisonous word throughout. I have never had to deal with such things due to having lived in South Africa on a farm where you didn't have this sort of pressure. Now I live in the Netherlands which is the polar opposite.

When I correct her people feel sorry for her. Even though it's only a voice correction (I usually only give her a slight touch if she really does not pay attention to what I am saying just to distract her and then I reward her when she comes to me) but their 'compassion' with the pup (for no real reason) is really annoying me. Their dogs do whatever they want - including jumping on people and persistent nudging when your hands are in your pockets because they want food. I do not blame the dogs - it's obvious that these owners don't teach their dogs acceptable behavior as a pup and the dogs know no better. But I do not want her to end up like that. I've always have had very playful yet well-behaved dogs, and I won't change that... I want Luna to be healthy both physically and mentally, but these things are putting me in an irritable frame of mind - a frame of mind I do NOT want to train my dogs with, because I like to be calm so that I can handle anything in the right, positive frame of mind.
 

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You could lie and say she has food allergies and she will get quite ill if she is fed the wrong thing. This is actually true of a dog in one of our playgroups -- so treats are forbidden for all dogs, just in case! Obviously you don't have that kind of control in public, but the threat of medical harm might make it seem like you're more serious.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Indeed, I hate lying D: But they do need to take this seriously...
 

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Try something like "Why on earth would you keep feeding my dog when I asked you not to?" When people have to explain their behavior and can't, they often react differently than if you simply tell them not to do something.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ah, yes... right now due to personal circumstance it's so friggin' difficult for me to handle confrontation or starting it... it is actually annoying me. I think I could say that without being too confrontational about it. :)
 

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If you say it in a really hurt, astonished tone of voice it ends up being not very confrontational at all IME.
 

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I would honestly just lie...if its people you've seen before (park regulars), tell them the vet "just FINALLY figured it out after so many visits!" It turns out she's HIGHLY allergic to a lot of COMMON things, and her symptoms are ABNORMAL and you're concerned because the vet said she could easily be in danger from finding some food and you're really scared that you're going to miss it when she finds something and she'll get VERY sick.

I'm not even kidding...maybe I'm a bad person, but I feel like most dog owners are sufficently scared of jeopardizing someone elses dog in public, enough that they would stop feeding her.
 

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Or you could put a bright orange flouro jacket on her with a muzzle and tell people she gets viscious when strangers get in her space. :)
On a serious note though, you can very quickly train a dog to only take food from you, or only when given the OK to eat. Properly trained a dog can ignore a T Bone steak sitting on its nose.

This is something that I tell people with fat dogs because the tubbyness is often caused by other people (read neighbours) throwing the dog scraps.
 

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Shoot id tell them off... But then again im from Texas lol :/. No one feeds my dogs or treats my dogs in a way I do not want them to be treated, in fact that's whyninleft my last job ;) because of my bitchy boss & her bratty rude kids (some of you might remember my posts about them) so I got the hell out of there. I wanted to tell her the real reason why I was leaving but OH said not to that it would make things worse (it was all ready enough like a divorce as it was).

I would ask nicely, if they didn't listen then tell them off. Manage your pup if you have to, practice "dropping" things near her or in front of her & silently preventing her from getting it, when she stops trying &/or looks at you then praise & treat, that's what indie with Izze to combat this & it worked like a charm :).

Good luck, ppl of mainstream society can be so frustrating sometimes :/
 

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Indeed, I hate lying D: But they do need to take this seriously...
If it gives you any peace, consider the following; "an allergen is an antigen capable of stimulating a hypersensitivity." Literally speaking, it does not have to have already caused the reaction, it only has to have the capability of causing a reaction. So saying your dog has an allergy isn't really a lie at all, and you can't control how she chooses to percieve it.

This woman's behavior could be classified as disrespecting a personal boundary, how would your pupper handle that? she'd give that old witch a good nip! Seriously, she's absolutely in the wrong. Luna is your dog, you have legal ownership, and you pay to care for her. If she wants to make a dog rotten, then she needs to get her own dog. In all seriousness, it doesn't seem very plausible that these people truly agree with her or sympathize with her, they're just playing a social game. Step back, and look at what she does to you. Do you think they want to be run all over by her bullying too? No. So they tell her what she wants to hear, just so she'll stay out of their way.

From here on out, there are potential allergens everywhere! And from what I hear, there is a double concentration of allergens in a 6 foot radius of this woman. ;)
 

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Ah, yes... right now due to personal circumstance it's so friggin' difficult for me to handle confrontation or starting it... it is actually annoying me. I think I could say that without being too confrontational about it. :)
this is super hard for me too, I can get real snarky really fast. Before I know it, I've gone and burned a bridge. :( Trying to find the perfect solution makes me anxious, and boundary violators can smell anxiety like it's smoke from a fire. (that could be the smoke rolling out of my ears...)

Sass' approach is a good one, this is a "white lie," because it hurts no one and it's good for you to get out of dealing with unnecessary frustration. Should the lie come out, well, the old bag backed you into a corner... no one will blame you for defending yourself in a civilised manner.
 

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I don't mind if people give Caeda treats IF they ask first. That has happened several times and I always thank them for asking. I'm quite surprised that at the dog park someone would give treats to your dog without asking first, that is so rude! I would go with the white lie, just to let everybody save face. If they continued I'd just ask them if they wanted you to give their dog some chocolate for treats.

As for the behaviour stuff, with strangers I'd try to restrain your dog, if they say "oh its ok", just say "its not ok with me". If they continue letting the pup jump, there isn't much you can really do. With people you know, I'd explain ahead of time what is ok for the dog to do and what isn't. This might end up with the odd person who stops the jumping in ways you don't necessarily like, but in most cases its better than allowing the jumping. If it doesn't actually hurt your dog, in the long run I guess it isn't so bad.
 

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No need to lie. Just say, she is in training, please do not "---" the dog. (Feed, pet, let her jump, etc.) You have no need to explain anything, so if they persist, remove your dog from the situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Or you could put a bright orange flouro jacket on her with a muzzle and tell people she gets viscious when strangers get in her space. :)
On a serious note though, you can very quickly train a dog to only take food from you, or only when given the OK to eat. Properly trained a dog can ignore a T Bone steak sitting on its nose.

This is something that I tell people with fat dogs because the tubbyness is often caused by other people (read neighbours) throwing the dog scraps.
I hadn't even thought about that! Sounds like something we can definitely work on... and yes, the flouro jacket muzzle image on our fluffy little Luna sounds entertaining :D
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I would honestly just lie...if its people you've seen before (park regulars), tell them the vet "just FINALLY figured it out after so many visits!" It turns out she's HIGHLY allergic to a lot of COMMON things, and her symptoms are ABNORMAL and you're concerned because the vet said she could easily be in danger from finding some food and you're really scared that you're going to miss it when she finds something and she'll get VERY sick.

I'm not even kidding...maybe I'm a bad person, but I feel like most dog owners are sufficently scared of jeopardizing someone elses dog in public, enough that they would stop feeding her.
Thank you for that advice :) have you ever had a dog that truly is allergic to anything? How do they react? I could google that, but I like to hear the personal experiences with ailments as I find pretty useful advice can come from it. Thanks anyway!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Shoot id tell them off... But then again im from Texas lol :/. No one feeds my dogs or treats my dogs in a way I do not want them to be treated, in fact that's whyninleft my last job ;) because of my bitchy boss & her bratty rude kids (some of you might remember my posts about them) so I got the hell out of there. I wanted to tell her the real reason why I was leaving but OH said not to that it would make things worse (it was all ready enough like a divorce as it was).

I would ask nicely, if they didn't listen then tell them off. Manage your pup if you have to, practice "dropping" things near her or in front of her & silently preventing her from getting it, when she stops trying &/or looks at you then praise & treat, that's what indie with Izze to combat this & it worked like a charm :).

Good luck, ppl of mainstream society can be so frustrating sometimes :/
Managing really does sound like the best path of action. I had no trouble with the dogs on the farm as it was usually just myself and the dogs, so this is a new challenge. Perhaps I should just see it as a totally new learning experience :p Thanks for the advice.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
If it gives you any peace, consider the following; "an allergen is an antigen capable of stimulating a hypersensitivity." Literally speaking, it does not have to have already caused the reaction, it only has to have the capability of causing a reaction. So saying your dog has an allergy isn't really a lie at all, and you can't control how she chooses to percieve it.

This woman's behavior could be classified as disrespecting a personal boundary, how would your pupper handle that? she'd give that old witch a good nip! Seriously, she's absolutely in the wrong. Luna is your dog, you have legal ownership, and you pay to care for her. If she wants to make a dog rotten, then she needs to get her own dog. In all seriousness, it doesn't seem very plausible that these people truly agree with her or sympathize with her, they're just playing a social game. Step back, and look at what she does to you. Do you think they want to be run all over by her bullying too? No. So they tell her what she wants to hear, just so she'll stay out of their way.

From here on out, there are potential allergens everywhere! And from what I hear, there is a double concentration of allergens in a 6 foot radius of this woman. ;)
Indeed this woman is a special case when it comes to respect! she is also way older than me and therefore also assumes that the cute 'older lady feeding the dog' thing flies well with everyone. I mean, my dog really doesn't *need* any extra food so I'd rather prevent it from happening as I only see downsides to it and no real contribution to our training and fun time as she seems chuffed enough to work for her treats! So as far as I am concerned I think you are right... I see logics in that. Thank you for the post!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I don't mind if people give Caeda treats IF they ask first. That has happened several times and I always thank them for asking. I'm quite surprised that at the dog park someone would give treats to your dog without asking first, that is so rude! I would go with the white lie, just to let everybody save face. If they continued I'd just ask them if they wanted you to give their dog some chocolate for treats.

As for the behaviour stuff, with strangers I'd try to restrain your dog, if they say "oh its ok", just say "its not ok with me". If they continue letting the pup jump, there isn't much you can really do. With people you know, I'd explain ahead of time what is ok for the dog to do and what isn't. This might end up with the odd person who stops the jumping in ways you don't necessarily like, but in most cases its better than allowing the jumping. If it doesn't actually hurt your dog, in the long run I guess it isn't so bad.
I know what you're saying - if people ask me if they can feed my dog I would still say no, but I'd definitely appreciate their respectful behavior! I usually don't feed other people's dogs and on rare occasion that it happens I'll always ask first... I responded the other day with "it's not okay with me" with five different people on the street! Who then proceeded to tell me "but she's only a puppy and she is cute!" yes well... I've started putting my foot down. Thank you! :)
 
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