Has your dog ever been attacked by another dog? I never thought it would happen to us. We live in a small town in a nice townhome community. We’ve walked the dog a million times around the block.
It was a normal Saturday morning. My husband and I wanted to go shopping, so we decided to take the dog for a walk before we left so she would be nice and tired and sleep at home. We turned right out of our door and headed down the block, passing townhome after townhome. A man was working on his car and we joked and talked with him for a minute before continuing our walk. All of a sudden a dog came running out circling around our dog. Oreo growled and I was thinking “Don’t growl why are you growling?”
Well, I soon found out. Within seconds the dog bit her back, and wouldn’t let go. It was a pitbull terrier. My husband and I were screaming, hitting, punching, and kicking the dog as hard as we could. Our little Oreo was screaming, crying, but couldn’t turn around. The dog had a firm bite on her back/bottom and wouldn’t let go. We tried pulling and Oreo’s skin stretched. I remember thinking, “Oh god I hope this is not it, this can’t be happening, this is a nightmare.” It went on for what felt like forever, but was probably about 4 minutes.
The man working on his car came over and unlatched the dog somehow. I ran all the way home, got the car and we drove to the vet. I will spare posting the pictures. She had to get shaved and had cuts and buises all over her body. She was put on antibiotics and pain pills. She seemed okay with people and dogs, licking the guy whose dog attacked ours. Everything would change after this. I wish the day never happened and we never went for a walk before the mall. To this day we will not walk down that block and we still see the owner walking the dog…usually with a muzzle. That dog may not have been affected, but now our dog is extremely fearful of unfamiliar dogs.
HOW IT CHANGES THINGS
Our dog was a socialite. She went to puppy and advanced training classes. She would love to play with all the dogs. We actually had issues where we couldn’t get her to STOP trying to play with every dog she saw. We did practice with recall (come) in class where she would run down between 2 lines of dogs to me. She almost made it to me, but would turn and play with a dog in the class.
How things changed in 4 minutes.
Now, she freezes when she sees or hears dogs. She will not move and stare. She knows where the dogs live in our neighborhood so will slow down near houses she knows dogs are, then when we get close she will speed up and if we get too close she will growl, bark, lunge, and snap. The goal now is to not get that close that she is so fearful she feels she needs to do that.
Part of the reason I made this blog is to let other people know they are not alone. I thought she might be aggressive at first, she might try to be dominant. People told me you have to be a leader, force her on the ground or get her a prong collar. No no, this would only make her worse. She is a fearful dog. Putting a prong collar on would only make it worse. Every time she sees a dog she we get a pinch-then what? This will only reinforce that dogs are bad. Each time she sees one she will get a pinch. Not very smart.
More on training later.