Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Dog Park Drama

I'm not sure I can convey the dog park stories appropriately without audio. Apparently, my "Chance voice" is very descriptive. But I'm sure you can imagine it, right?

On Thursday, Chance and I met Mark at his work before softball. But, Mark didn't have his softball gear with him. So he had to go back to the house. Chance and I decided to go ahead and go to the dog park without him. We got there and things were lovely. Chance did the usual, "Hi! People!" routine, and barely paid attention to the dogs. He also found a sucker in the form of a nine-year-old girl who didn't mind that he was slobbery, and so she kept petting him.

We had been there for about 20 to 30 minutes. I was talking with some of the other "moms" and "dads" (one doggie had two daddies). And I was laughing in my head because the doggie of the two daddies was always getting in trouble. He didn't seem to be doing anything wrong, but one of the daddies would yell, "Auto! no!" and auto would stop doing, well, nothing. It was kind of humorous. (he was a high strung dog).

And then all hell broke loose.

A woman and her son (who I had talked to before on another trip to the dog park) were coming in the gate with their little chihuahua mix (bigger than a chihuahua, but still small....maybe with a small rat terrier mixed in). Two big dogs came barreling through the gate and started attacking the little dog. We heard the yelps and we all turned around and I saw the little dog being flung around like it was a toy. The owner of the two dogs came in and tried to stop them, and another woman grabbed the dog that was holding the chihuahua and pulled its jaws apart to get the little dog out. The little dog ended up biting the woman on the face in all the chaos.

The owner had fallen to the ground and was sobbing and screaming. Her son had kicked off his sandals and ran as fast as he could away from the gates and over to the activity area, where he sobbed. And as things settled down (sort of), the other dogs (including Chance) came over to see what all the fuss was about.

I dragged Chance away from the gate and he continued to do his Chance thing (though, he stayed a little closer to me) and I went over to the little boy (he's about 8 or 9 I'd say). His mom and the lady that had grabbed the little dog were outside the park on a picnic table making sure the dog was okay. And they tried reassuring him that it was okay to come over there, but he wasn't budging. I went and talked to him and walked him out of the park (keeping the dogs away from him).

After that, the adrenaline (in the humans and the dogs) was a little high. And almost everyone left (except the guy with the attack dogs!) We were all talking in the parking lot and I let Auto have a drink of Chance's water. (friends!) The little dog will be okay. She wasn't hurt, she was just startled.


Nicole P. said...

Oh my gosh, so scary!!

Aimee said...

Seriously! I thought that little dog was a goner. It was NOT FUN.

Are we on COPS again? said...

How traumatizing! I'm glad that the little dog came out okay. Close call.

Aimee said...

Can you just imagine Chance's, "hey! what are you guys doing?" voice? That was exactly him.

And I'm telling everyone, "you saw him come in here after the fact right? My dog was sooo not involved" lol

Carrie said...

Thanks Aimee. You put tears in my eyes. I never ever want to go to a dog park now. Mean ass dogs. I'm just glad that Chance wasn't any part of it.

Let me be my other personality now.

Dude! The little dog got his ass beat. Little dog needs to start lifting if he wants to go play in the jungle.

Aimee said...

To be totally fair,
1) the mean dogs shouldn't have been at the park - the owner had them with choke collars and were worried about them - I could tell - even before anything happened

but also

2) the owner of little dog should have gotten off her damn cell phone and paid more attention - and also, little dog has a serious attitude and thinks it is a big dog. She should be aware of that.

Carrie said...

Let's have a doggy class. Chance can be the assistant. Little doggy gots big dog attitude. lol

alyndabear said...

I have little dogs, and I wouldn't take them to the dog park. Yep. Rusty thinks he's a Great Dane. And Max is so lazy, he refuses to walk on a leash anymore. Just kind of sits down and wags his tail. Bloody chihuahuas.

When J & I get back, we're getting big dogs. I can't wait!

L Sass said...

Oh my god, Chance is so cute. I need a dog.

The dog park near us separates the small and big dogs, so the little ones don't get beat up on!

Angela said...

Sheesh, can't we all just get along?

Marianne said...

I heart Chance's head! That look just says "Woe." What kind of dog is he? You might have said before, I dunno.

Lindsey said...

One time a pit bull bit Bugs. Luckily he didn't break the skin, but the point is, some dogs just shouldn't be allowed in the park.

I love that pic of Chance, but he looks so sad. :-(

Julie said...

Those dogs need a time out.

Something similar happened at our dog park and Bailey just sat near me and licked the wind.... seriously.


Aimee said...

Chance is a boxer mix...everyone asks if he's Rodesian Ridgeback, so he must look like one. LOL

He used to ALWAYS look sad. That pic was after a bath. LOL He either looks sad or guilty. It's just his natural face. (unless he's panting - then he looks MEAN)

Julie - I think Bailey and Chance would get along great. The totally oblivious mama's kids. LOL

Jenny said...

So awful! One of my best friends and her dog got attacked by another dog. The dog barely survived and my friend still has the scars.

B. Good said...

Awww, poor thing! The HORROR! Just reading that made my heart hurt. I'm glad the little dog was ok. But did the owner of the attack dogs have anything to say for himself???


Glad Chance wasn't involved! I can see he's far too sweet for that. right? Right??


Sugee Andersyn said...

LMAO! ->He didn't seem to be doing anything wrong, but one of the daddies would yell, "Auto! no!" and auto would stop doing, well, nothing. It was kind of humorous.

See? Dog park posts are awesome :)

DfromDC said...

I stumbled onto this blog because a similar event happened at my dog park today and I was looking for help and advice. My dog is a 1 year old boxer and or pit mix that we got from a rescue when he was 3 months old, medium size about 45 pounds. This was only our second time at the dog park but after watching him play for over 45 min with no issues, I was relaxed and feeling great about him learning appropriate dog etiquette from other dogs. Then a tiny dog came in, miniature schnauzer maybe. My son, daughter and I have seen his rough play upset small dogs, so we were watching closely as he sniffed the dog, and all seemed fine. Then a group of larger dogs started moving around to check out the new comer, there was a bunch of jostling and pushing around the small dog and before I knew it, my dog had the small dog by the scruff of the neck. I was panic stricken as was the Schnauzer's owner. As I ran screaming toward my dog, the other dog's owner tried to pull my dog off. Though she ended up on the ground she had her dog in her arms by the time I reached my dog. My dog was just standing there as if he did not realize he had done a bad thing. I was horrified. I quickly leashed him and he stood quietly while I checked to make sure the small dog was okay. No broken skin, no other sign of injury. Whew! I apologized over and over again. The other owner was understanding under the circumstance and said her dog was an instigator, but it didn't make me feel any better seeing my dog grab this dog by the nape of the neck. I then quickly exited the park, vowing to never go back. Once I got over the trauma I thought I should do some research to see if my dog is hopeless or can be managed. In other words, bad dog or bad owner. I recently read about not letting your do lead during a walk, to reinforce your dominance it the pack,important for willful breeds. Using a gentle leader and this philosophy our walks, dominated by lunging after squirrels have dramatically improved. I'm wondering if there are other things I can do to ensure my dog will never do again what he did today. I was also wondering if the fact that he did not break the skin means that he was not actually trying to hurt the dog or was it just a lucky break. Love to hear from any animal behaviorist out there.