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You must be in control of your dog in public. Dogs don’t have to be on a lead all the time but do have to be on a lead in designated pedestrian zones and on land where livestock is present.
It’s important to check the bye-laws on your local council website to see the areas where dogs must be kept on a lead. Follow my tips below to make walkies a pleasant experience for everyone.
Respect Other Owners
I think it is important to respect other owners and put your dog on the lead if you see another dog and owner approaching. If you don’t know them personally you don’t know how their pet is going to react if your dog approaches.
It will be your fault if anything happens because your dog won’t be under control with being off the lead. It’s surprising how many people don’t do this and say “Oh he’s friendly” while thier dog is freaking your dog out.
I have a dog that is fearful of some but not all dogs larger than him. I always keep him on a lead when our park is busy. He’s sensitive to loud noises such as cars, skateboards, scooters and bikes going past him. So I only ever let him off when nobody is around and it’s quiet.
I’m surprised at the number of people who let their dogs run free and allow them to approach other dogs without checking with other owners if their dog is okay. Some dogs are nervous and need space.
I was walking my dog on the lead in our local park when a great big dog came bounding over, my dog was scared and showed his teeth as a warning and this guy’s dog started to attack him.
I tried to pull his dog away but it was so big I had a real struggle, I had to stand between both dogs. When the owner finally got to us he said he was trying to train the dog and that the dog only wanted to play. He had no control over it and it definitely wasn’t playing!
If the guy had put his dog on the lead in time, everything would have been fine. All it has done is to make my dog more fearful of larger dogs.
Things You Can Do For Fearful Dogs
If your dog is anxious and needs space, there are special leads and harnesses that you can buy. For instance, the products below serve as a warning to other owners to give your dog space.
Dexil NERVOUS (Give Me Space/Maybe Unpredictable) Yellow Warning Dog Colour Coded Padded Personalised 1.2m 4ft Lead Leash To Prevent Accidents or Incidents. Dog Award WinningNERVOUS (Give Me Space) Yellow Colour Coded Non-Pull Front and Back D Ring Padded and Waterproof Vest Dog Harness PREVENTS Accidents By Warning Others Of Your Dog In Advance (S)
In conclusion, keeping your dog on a lead is a must in any public place unless your dog is well trained and comes back when called. As mentioned above there are certain circumstances where you have to keep your dog on a lead. Always err on the side of caution when there are other dogs about, check with other owners first to see if their dogs are okay and will be okay to play with yours off the lead.