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Hello all, new user here. Bear with my long story, just would like some advice for what you all would do in my situation.

I go to the dog park every day for a couple of hours with my five month old malamute. About a week ago, there was a husky there that seemed to be playing extremely rough - biting at my dog's neck. She was running away and at first I thought it was just play, but when she was cornered, she rolled on her back and the husky went for the neck, then did the "kill shake" (as our trainer calls it, where a dog rapidly shakes the thing in its mouth left and right).

My puppy yelped for about 3 seconds straight as I ran over to her and pulled the other dog off of her. It seemed abnormal to me that the other dog didn't pull off when my dog yelped, if it was just play. I immediately left the inside of the park and stuck around long enough to see who the husky's owner was. I didn't say anything, but I wanted to know because I was upset that she wasn't watching her dog at all.

Fast forward to yesterday, we were at the dog park again and about ten minutes in, the same dog and owner come in. Immediately, the husky goes at it again and I pull my dog out of the park before anything gets too crazy. We went for a short walk nearby, came back, and she really wanted to go back in. Stupidly, I let her back in and again, the husky wouldn't leave her alone and kept biting at the neck.

This time, the owner was nearby and I tried to separate the dogs. She insisted from afar that it was just play and her dog has never hurt any other dog. I kept telling her that her dog keeps biting at my dog's neck and it did before which made her cry. Since she wasn't watching that day, she said she never saw that and probably didn't believe me. All while this is going on, I'm trying to keep her dog off of mine and I finally yell to her to get her dog under control so we can leave.

I was pretty upset at this point and she had told me "that's how huskies play" and to "ask anyone in the park if her dog has ever hurt any other dog". I have been going there every day for the past four weeks and I'd never seen any dog play that rough, and if things did get too rough then the owners would separate them.

The worst part of all of it is that my dog started to bite back at the other dog, which she has never done, ever. I don't want her to pick up cues from this other dog to think that it's OK to bite other dogs.

So my question is basically, what would you guys do about this? My plan is to basically just leave the park any time I see them, but it's inconvenient because the park is about 25 minutes away. She was very stubborn and didn't want to listen to anything I was saying. Am I being unreasonable? Is this actually an OK way for them to play? Thanks.

(TLDR: other dog is biting at my dog's neck, my dog doesn't like it, other dog's owner doesn't care, what would you do?)
 

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Seems like the other dogs owner Does not know how to watch there dog!

Are you going at the same certain time everyday? If so, you could try going another time during the day.
Is there another park you can go too?

~Erica~
 

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I'm not there so cannot judge:
1. A young pup could freak out from rough play, when it isn't being harmed.
2. An excited dog could get more excited from shrieks.

I've seen a large dog nearly eat a tiny puppy in play... The pup was never in any danger, except for getting slimed by the larger dog... And the pup learned to 'attack' the larger dog... You can find Youtube videos of this type of behavior... this is how they learn to play appropriately... and it is usually good training.

On the other hand, I've seen two similarly sized dogs play roughly, and one dog gets over excited, grabbing the playmate on the check and drawing blood and shrieks. No aggression, just over-excitement.

So, I don't know which situation this instance fits into...

There is a reasonable test: When the husky 'attacks' your pup, and your pup shrieks, remove the husky! Ask the owner to help you wit this... If your pup follows, trying to play with the husky, he probably was not as injured as it sounded....
 

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Kinda hard to judge really from your description if it was too rough or not. Something you have to be there yourself to judge. As Hanksimon said sometimes puppies freak out and over react to rough play. But there are also people at the dog park who do not properly monitor their dogs so it could be either one. My boy plays really rough but has never hurt any dog doing so. When I still went to the dog park I'd watch him closely and if the other dog or owner seemed uncomfortable with Jubel's rough play or vocalness I'd step in. Even though my dog was just playing I won't allow him to bother other dogs.

I think the husky owner should have respected your wishes to remove their dog from yours but can't judge from what your wrote alone if their dog was being too rough or not.
 

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OK, thanks for the responses. To hanksimon, I see you don't really think it's a bad thing for them to work it out themselves, but isn't there more than one way that can end? I think it could end well, it could end with either dog being hurt, or with my dog wanting to initiate biting at other dogs. Only one of those things is an ideal end for me since I don't want them to hurt each other and I don't want my dog to play rough, especially at her young age where she doesn't even know how big and strong she is compared to some of the smaller dogs.

As far as my dog following him afterwards, she didn't want to play with him at all once he started biting. Whenever she gets scared, she runs into a corner and either sits down or rolls over, which is exactly what she did. Then the second time around she tried to bite back, but I was already there to break them up.

Maybe something I didn't communicate very well in my post is that I do believe that this other dog was playing (albeit rough) most of the time, but that one time when he bit down on her neck was the time in question, and that's what I was trying to prevent from happening again.

With that said, I would like to try having them play and the other owner and I working together to keep it safe, but like I said before... I'm a little bit afraid of it not ending well.
 

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I'm not blindly in favor of dogs working it out. Even my own dog, who is 'non-aggressive' and used to socialize other dogs, is capable of being seen as bullying very shy dogs, because he is a Lab. Labs aren't bullies, as such, but many of them always want to play and think that other dogs are that way, also. So even if the owner has no problem, the 'victim' may not be learning, so I'll pull my dog away.

When your dog tries to bite back, if she has a high-pitched snarl and bark, that might be a "back-off!" bite ... or it might be an attempt to play roughly also. There's no way for me to know. If it is play, then I think it is a good think, b/c with exposure to a wide variety of different sized dogs, your dog can learn to play appropriately... Just like with Bite Inhibition, dogs can learn to self-handicap as a form of 'play-inhibition' using the appropriate energy with individual dogs.

When my dog was a 60 lb adolescent, he learned to play with Yorkies, 40 lbs dogs, dogs his size, and 100 lb dogs. He was agile and could roll the 100lb dogs, or he would only slime the Yorkies, taking turns as aggressor and victim. But, the best play therapy was a playmate his size and energy... and they went at each other like wolves for 30 min., continuing on their sides after they were worn out. There'd be a little (painless) bloodshed from mouth-to-mouth contact, but no anger or aggression. And very tired, calm, sleepy dogs for the next day or two. I think that my dog is very calm now, b/c of those play sessions... And, that's why I encourage monitored play sessions with a variety of dogs...

You can choose not to play with this specific dog, but I recommend multiple play sessions with different sized dogs.
 

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I don't think it's a terrible idea to let the dogs play and get used to each other, but if you do I would make sure that both you and the other owner are there to watch the dogs closely. If it does get to rough, you could always pull the Husky off.

On the other hand, it's not ideal, but if you're truly concerned there's always the possibility of finding another dog park.
 
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