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How would you socialize your dogs with other dogs besides their pack without dog parks? And do you feel that socializing outside of their pack and family is important?
 

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Personally, Paris is socialised at dog shows (agility/obedience/rally/confirmation)as well as by being at work with me daily. I don't like dog parks much except when it's otherwise empty as a place I can let Paris run like a looney. lol
 

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Pet stores, home depot, other stores that allow pets are always good places to socialize your dog with people. There are often "unofficial" dog parks or areas that are heavily frequented by dogs in most cities.
I think it is EXTREMELY important to socialize outside the family, especially with poodles as they tend to be "aloof" with strangers. The aloofness can easily become fear or aggression without lots of outside socialization.
 

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Personally, Paris is socialised at dog shows (agility/obedience/rally/confirmation)as well as by being at work with me daily. I don't like dog parks much except when it's otherwise empty as a place I can let Paris run like a looney. lol
I am thinking I might join an obedience club with Harry to get him socialization and learn obedience commands. He knows many of the basics and silly tricks so maybe we can learn some new things. The agility classes here are only 2 times a year and there aren't a lot of dog shows in this area. There is a doggie playdate but it's not during a convenient time for me and my family. We don't exactly live in a dog friendly city. It's more of a tourist city.
 

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How would you socialize your dogs with other dogs besides their pack without dog parks? And do you feel that socializing outside of their pack and family is important?
I take my dogs out a lot... walking, hiking etc. You can actually meet a lot of people on walks, and you’ll soon realize who in your neighborhood have dogs and who don’t/ who’s dogs are good to have your dogs socialize with and who to stay away from.
I know most of the dogs in my neighborhood and set up “play dates” for my dogs with people whose dogs are already well socialized.

I do think it is very important for dogs to meet others outside of their pack. This will teach them how to interact with strange dogs and people.
I often say: dogs are very much like people... they are pack animals .... would you want to stay locked in your room all day long, never meet anyone, eat the same thing everyday? The thing with socializing dogs is the more dogs and people they meet that are strange to them, the better they are socialized IMO. Just like people.

I never go to dog parks. I see it as a place where people take their dogs when they don't feel like dealing with them. Bad combination all the way around.
 

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I plan on doing play dates with my friends dogs that I know are dog friendly. I also know a lot of dog lovers, and I work at Petco, so taking my pup to work on my days off will be what I'm goig to do.

I don't want to do too many public places until my pup is all up to date on shots though, but once your puppy is good to go you can always do pet stores because you're bound to find animal lovers that will be more than happy to meet your dog.
 

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Well, just out in public I guess, but also at dog shows and obdience class. I'm lucky enough to live in a community that has 120 miles of city owned hiking trails, most of which allow dogs off leash. Personally I don't take my Poodles to dog parks because in Boulder they are filled with out of control bad citizens and clueless owners. A bunch of dogs running around and body slamming each other is NOT socialization. It is more Lord of the Flies!
 

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Sadie is socialized simply by going places with me, and she goes just about everywhere with me... family with dogs, pets stores, feed store, horse shows, walks on the greenway, around the neighborhood....
I think her socialization with people is just as important as with other dogs.
 

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It's harder than you think depending on where you live. I am also in a tourist area, and our dog park is massive - almost like going to a state park with the lake and woods. But that's it other then pet supply stores or walks that all ours get. And as of late, I am going to have to work with Suri because when we go to the DP she gets almost out of control, and once she get's in there she can get over zoomie.
 

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I'm lucky in the fact that I can take Flip to work, but I do drag him with me to the pet store, home depot, etc.

I also do the dog park thing, but our dog park (so far) has well mannered dogs.
 

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I don't think we have dog parks here in England!!! I exercise my dogs on the meadows above where we keep the horses. They are off lead unless approached by an unknown dog. I also don't like insane running around, leading to barking and possible biting. I like them to amble along with us and others we meet, have a sniff at a dog's bottom and then go about doing their own thing - usually more sniffing of exciting smells.

We go to agility and to obedience but they are not allowed to socialise there - that's for work and with me. Occasionally we go to an informal agility "chat and work" activity. When we are clearing up at the end, we let all the dogs off lead and they wander around, sometimes tagging along with us, sometimes breaking off for another sniff of a passing dog - all very sociable and low key. Mine are toy poodles and I would never trust their health with out of control dogs or big dogs that I didn't already know.
 

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I think socialization towards humans is way more important that being socialized around other dogs. I think controlled environments are better, puppy classes, obedience, pet stores, etc. I'm not a fan of dog parks and I think there's a good chance efforts to socialize at the dog park can back fire. If your puppy is pounced on or attacked by an out of control dog, it could end up being traumatized. I've heard too many stories about idiots at the dog park and so many people don't understand dog behavior.
 

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I take Eli to what is hardly considered a dog park in my eyes. The main attraction there is the dogs...its pretty much a large dirt area fenced in on a busy road that the city decided to quit watering over a year ago. Yes, I know, what a wonderful city I live in!

Anyhow, I take Eli there about once a week to every two weeks. Since Ive started taking Eli there, he's really became a much more social dog to people and way more playful with other dogs. It really has made a great improvement in him. He seems alot more confident as well.

Although Eli really enjoys the dog park and Ive noticed such a difference in how social he is, Im often worried if this will be the last time I'll enjoy my Poodle. Id like to think most dog owners that have aggressive dogs dont bring there dogs to a dog park but just a few weeks ago, a park regular (lab pup) was killed from being attacked by a pit bull that was brought to be "socialized" for the first time. Thats one of my main concerns with dog parks now.

So Id like to recommend finding a dog park as that has really socialized Eli even more then he was already, there are also concerns to consider when doing so.
 

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Socialization is very important. It make a better happier and well rounded dog

BUT


Dog parks aren't the place to take a dog that is not already socialized. That is not what they are for. They are for already well socialized dogs to gather and play.

Unfortunately too many people take their ill mannered unsocialized dogs to the park and that is when accidents happen.

Best way to socialize an unsocialized dog or new puppy is in small controlled play groups. You can take puppy socialization classes. Sign up for a few days a week of doggy daycare. Set up playdates with friends and family that have dogs.

We rarely use a dog park (and only for Sasha), no matter how well socialized a dog we have is. Its too risky. Around here there are a lot of owners that bring their dogs and dont watch them or their dogs aren't well mannered or socialized.

Zachary was attacked as a 4 month old in the 20lb and under fence where someone let their 50lbs + dog into the park and he tore up 3 dogs, and the owner was drunk and encouraged the behavior. Zack was lucky to escape with just a few scratches, he was off playing in a corner and he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. My husband ran and grabbed Zack up faster than anything, Zack was lucky and so was my husband.

Now I won't use a dog park unless its empty or there are only 1 or 2 dogs and I have to observe for a bit before we go in.


We stick to small playgroups and playdates with other dogs and owners we know.

The dog park is just way too dangerous and my dogs are way too important to me to take that kind of risk again.
 

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Cooper and Greta go to work with me where they are around other people. Once a week I drop them off at doggie day play where they are around other dogs. I usually get my errands run and shopping done that day. Cooper has been going since he was about six months old. Greta has been twice for about 3 hours each time. In fact, they are going tomorrow. I feel that it is very important for our life style, for them to be dog/people friendly.
I live in the country and have very few neighbors. I am lucky enough that my next door neighbor has two dogs that Cooper can play with. The weather was finally decent enough(it has been freezing or just to wet) to get out and Greta met them for the first time last Saturday. They all had a blast playing and chasing one another. For the last 4 days we have been able to go walking down the field roads and in the woods exploring. About 15 miles from me there is a town that is a dog friendly town. I love to take Cooper down there to run and play cause there is always someone else there with their dogs. This past summer during the fourth of July festival, we met several standard spoos and their owners.
I take them to the pet stores and Lowes (large home and building supply store). Both my 15 year old son and 20 year old play baseball, so during baseball season we all travel to their games. But where ever I go, Cooper always draws attention. Has anybody else notice this when they are out with their spoos? A lady the other day said she didn't know that poodles came in that size!
 

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Teddy's dog park is midtown Manhattan. Today he met 3 new dogs and their owners and a bunch of people who didn't have dogs with them. I hate to tell you all this, but the one dog who didn't give him a very warm reception was a mini poodle.

Honestly, Teddy has never met a stranger, human, feline or canine, and I love that about him. I hope he never outgrows it.
 

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I think socialization towards humans is way more important that being socialized around other dogs. I think controlled environments are better, puppy classes, obedience, pet stores, etc. I'm not a fan of dog parks and I think there's a good chance efforts to socialize at the dog park can back fire. If your puppy is pounced on or attacked by an out of control dog, it could end up being traumatized. I've heard too many stories about idiots at the dog park and so many people don't understand dog behavior.

Thats exactly why we don't do dog parks. Zachary has never been the same and we have had to put in a lot of work just to get him to trust other dogs since the incident...but at the time we didn't know anyone with dogs and it was suggested that a dog park would be a good place to socialize, well not it was simply a good way for my dog to get hurt and develop trust issues with other dogs.
 

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Thats exactly why we don't do dog parks. Zachary has never been the same and we have had to put in a lot of work just to get him to trust other dogs since the incident...but at the time we didn't know anyone with dogs and it was suggested that a dog park would be a good place to socialize, well not it was simply a good way for my dog to get hurt and develop trust issues with other dogs.
Meet and Greet should always be in control by the owners with the dogs leashed. I have never taken Cooper to a dog park because I am not comfortable with the off leash freedom around dogs that we don't know. I would of never thought about it being dangerous either, until it was brought up when I was taking Cooper to puppy classes.
 

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I love going to the park with my guys, but it's not really a dog park as there are not gates. It's an off leash doggy paradise, a piece of government land that used to be a fort. The views are spectacular and there is a beach access, although I prefer going elsewhere for the beach walks. We are lucky in S.F. to have an official off leash beach where dogs can play.
 

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I love going to the park with my guys, but it's not really a dog park as there are not gates. It's an off leash doggy paradise, a piece of government land that used to be a fort. The views are spectacular and there is a beach access, although I prefer going elsewhere for the beach walks. We are lucky in S.F. to have an official off leash beach where dogs can play.
I took Eli to Fort Funston and he had a great time. I agree that it's much different then a gated dog park. The main attraction there isnt the dogs but the beach scenery and all thats around. I feel better about places like that then an actual dog park. Its too bad that fort funston is a 1hr 45min drive for me otherwise Id be there often!
 
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