If you see a dog on leash at a park leave it alone
If you see a dog at a park on leash please leave it alone. This is especially true if it is at an off-leash park. Also, make sure your dog is kept well away.
The dog in question has not been let off the leash for a good reason. It may be people or dog aggressive. It may be undergoing special training or it may be sick or injured. Please respect the owner’s wishes. Even though they have not said anything by keeping their dog on a leash they are telling you to keep your dog and yourself away.
Many people make the silly assumption that because their dog is friendly then it is okay for it to rush up to other dogs. Please don’t be one of these owners. Some dog does not know how to read another dog’s body language very well. This is usually due to not having enough contact with their mother or having been raised by a dog that was too young and who lacked those skilled herself.
If a dog is unable to understand that your dog is being friendly it may become aggressive. This is a natural defence mechanism for dogs – it is better to attack than be attacked!
Look at the other dog. Is it painting? Are its eyes darting around? Are its ears back? These are all signs that it is stressed and anxious. If you see these signs in any dog move away and keep your dog and also children well clear. It is also worth remembering that the other dog needs exercise and training. Its owner is doing the right thing by bringing it outside. You need to respect that and do the right thing too and leave it alone. Many dogs just need space so let’s give it some.