Dog Owners, Please Do This

Posted: August 15, 2013 in Pets
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Callie eager for our walk

From the very day we got our Border Collie/Lab mix Callie a little over three years ago at the age of two months, we socialized her.  I took her on walks and intentionally headed toward places where other people and dogs would be found.  She has a sweet disposition, anyway, but it was still important to give her as many opportunities as possible to be around other dogs and people so that she would be easy to get along with.  As a lifetime dog owner and lover, it bothers me when people allow their dogs to be unsocialized, always barking at other people and unfriendly toward other dogs.

With tonight being an unseasonably cool August night here in Louisville, Kentucky, there were far more people and dogs at the nearby park than normal.  Everyone had the same idea of taking advantage of the weather.  Unfortunately, Callie and I ran into more than our share of very unsocialized dogs along the way.  In one case, the owner had to pick up and hold her little yappy mutt as we walked past.  Another one allowed Callie to get close enough to sniff noses but then snapped at her in an instant.  The other owner and I both pulled the leashes quickly to separate them.  Such incidents always take Callie by surprise because she assumes other dogs are friends until they prove otherwise.  A few other owners made sure their dogs weren’t allowed to get close to Callie as we passed each other.

Unfortunately, having one episode after another like the above made the walk far less enjoyable than our normal 2.5-mile evening stroll.  Sadly, it is all very preventable if the owners do their job.

While dogs certainly have their own dispositions and personalities, I believe any can be trained if they are in the hands of good dog owners.  And, yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks, even if the “trick” is getting along with others.

Dog owners, please socialize your dogs.  The world will be a happier place for you, your dog, and others you meet along the way.

p.s. –  If you need some sound advice for dog training, I highly recommend the resources – some free, some available for purchase – from Eric Letendre at

  1. Shaina Singh says:

    Good post! Validates my thoughts as well. thank you for the nice read.

  2. Gary Hughes says:

    Thank you for socializing your dog. I feel exactly the same way!!!

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