Dogs In Public?

Tom

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I wanted to ask what people's opinions are on dogs in public. Our own views are skewed by our own experiences. There is no right or wrong answer. Maybe a tortoise forum full of people who love pets isn't the most subjective place to get an answer, but this is what I've got since I really don't do any other type of social media.

I own a lot of dogs, and I like to take them with me just about everywhere I can. I enjoy their company. My job has me traveling all over the world, and my dogs ride in first class next to me after going through airport security lines and what not. "Celebrity" dogs is how we do this. It started with the Target dog back around the turn of the century, and now we do it with all of them because its easier, cheaper, and better in every way than trying to do it cargo anymore. If you've seen the recent trailer for "Aurthur the King", those are my dogs snarling in the alley. We flew from L.A. to Miami, and then from Miami to the Dominican Republic to film that.

Here are the Target dogs flying to do a commercial in NYC:
Target 1st Class copy.JPG

Here are the mals flying to GA to do the Walking Dead:
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IMG_9052 copy.JPG

Here is the typical hotel sleeping arrangement:
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So my view on this subject may be just a little biased. I may tend to see this issue a little differently than the norm. I don't mind well behaved dogs in public. I like seeing people with their dogs in stores, around town, just about anywhere. I really hate the places that are off-limits for dogs.

What is prompting this question is something that happened tonight. I took my wife to dinner and there was another party of four there, and one of the two couples had brought their small, well-behaved dog to the restaurant. The hostess politely explained the law to them, but they clearly didn't like it. I shook my head thinking that everyone knows you can't bring a dog into a restaurant, unless it is a service dog of course, so why did these people even try it? And why did they argue when the hostess told them the dog was not allowed? I had three dogs out in the car that I would have loved to bring in with me, but I knew not to.

But this begged a different question in my mind... As we walked to our table, I was bummed that their dog couldn't be with them. The dog was on a leash, quiet, well-adjusted, and causing no harm to anyone. I can understand not having dogs lick food off the table, or going potty in the restaurant, or being ill-mannered in any way, but why can't we have our dogs eat out with us? They eat with us at home. I have one dog that politely pulls up a chair and sits at the dinner table with us while we eat every night at home. He's perfectly behaved and knows his table manners well.

I know some people don't like dogs. So what? We all have to tolerate each other's idiosyncrasies. I have to tolerate stinky smokers, obnoxious children, grossly obese people, perfume and cologne, loud and obnoxious adults, rude and inconsiderate people, and a whole list of other things that I don't like. Is it really that much of an imposition to other people if there is a silent dog obediently laying or walking by my side?

My general question to anyone who cares to chime in is this: How do you feel about people taking their dogs into public places? I further question: Is our society/country too restrictive on this matter? Should we loosen up some of these laws and rules? Am I totally out of touch with reality because of my profession and the things I do with animals on a daily basis? I see the people bring their dogs into Home Depot, Walmart, Costco, Sam's Club, and other places, so I'm clearly not the only one...
 

wellington

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First it's the health department and OSHA that restrict dogs in places that serves food. Licenses lost if they don't follow those rules We have lots of restaurants in the city that allow dogs in the outdoor patio areas of the restaurant.
I personally would rather be with animals than humans. However, there are too many idiot owners that have no clue about how a dog should act in a public place like a restaurant. Heck, those same people likely, don't know how to make their bratty kids behave. Go to a dog park or dog beach. You'll see a bunch of idiots, with their dogs and kids.
I don't like what you did though. Bringing a dog just for it to be locked in a car. As much as you like having them with you, they'd rather be comfy at home than in a car. If they can't be with you the whole time and must be left in a car, then they should be left at home. I also don't like when people bring them to crowded art fairs, parades, etc, on hot summer days and they are scurrying here and there trying to not get stepped on. Its my concern for the dog though, not the fact that it's there.
I'd bet if they could speak, they'd tell ya they'd rather be home.
 

Chefdenoel10

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I may be the only one but I agree with all of what you said.
I would LOVE to see animals “walk among us “ so to say.
My sister got approached when we brought her pet rabbit IN A CARRIER BAG into a store once and we were asked to please remove the dog at once! When i replied back it was a lion head quiet tempered rabbit the lady just stood stunned 😳.
We left without incident but never to return.
You’re quite right that we have to deal with all other issues of rudeness in people form on a daily basis but I think it has to do with what always ends up happening.
If one does it …
All the rest feel they can too.
You’ll see inconsiderate people with all kinds of pets just running a muck.
Remember that lady who brought
A PECOCK on a plane as a service animal!?!? WTH???…..
Now in my neck of the woods when pot was made legal for MEDICAL PURPOSES; there isn’t a person around that doesn’t sneak it into there apartments and two family houses. It’s like the 60s here!!!
I have nothing against pot at all but I shouldn’t have to get high because they are smoking inside the house!!! They are more than welcome to do it as long as it’s OUTSIDE!
See what I mean??
There’s always THOSE people who ruin it for everyone.
Animals are AWSOME and SOME should be considered welcome as long as they behave themselves.
 

KarenSoCal

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I'd bet if they could speak, they'd tell ya they'd rather be home.

Oh my! To get out of my house without having 4 dogs jump in the car ahead of me is a daily contest! They want to go, go, go!

There is NO WAY that my dogs would rather be home. They hate staying at home, and many times I have felt so guilty about leaving them again and again. During the summer here we can never take our dogs anywhere and they start to get cabin fever. Seeing those faces as I say "stay and watch the house" is horrible.
 

wellington

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Oh my! To get out of my house without having 4 dogs jump in the car ahead of me is a daily contest! They want to go, go, go!

There is NO WAY that my dogs would rather be home. They hate staying at home, and many times I have felt so guilty about leaving them again and again. During the summer here we can never take our dogs anywhere and they start to get cabin fever. Seeing those faces as I say "stay and watch the house" is horrible.
I'm talking about when they are left in a car, tied to a pole, almost being stepped on at the art shows, etc. That's when they would not want to be there. Do they want to be with you, sure, except when they get left as I mentioned, that's when they would say no thanks. Just take a look at those dogs sometimes when in those situations. It's sad, very sad. Usually a scared face, wondering where their owner is. I seen it too many times and it's very sad.
If one is taking them just to leave in a car or be tied to a pole, leave them home.
 

Tom

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I'm talking about when they are left in a car, tied to a pole, almost being stepped on at the art shows, etc. That's when they would not want to be there. Do they want to be with you, sure, except when they get left as I mentioned, that's when they would say no thanks. Just take a look at those dogs sometimes when in those situations. It's sad, very sad. Usually a scared face, wondering where their owner is. I seen it too many times and it's very sad.
If one is taking them just to leave in a car or be tied to a pole, leave them home.
I don't know what you base that on, but my dogs practically live in cars, because I practically live in the car. Just like Karen, I have to specifically tell them NOT to get in the car if I don't want them coming with me, otherwise they dive in all on their own. In the car, with only a few exceptions, they are crated, and I have digital thermometers front and back, and a bluetooth/wifi one velcroed to the back of a crate that I can monitor from my phone. I have a diesel van that can idle all day for AC or heat in hot or cold weather too, but most days are pretty mild here. These laws banning dogs left in cars are making it very difficult for people in my business. Dogs should not be left in cars stupidly, but there is nothing wrong with it when done sensibly. I've done it for decades. I was doing it in Chicago when I met you.

I would never leave a dog tied to a pole or unattended in any way, and as far as walking in crowds, little dogs are carried one way or another, and my bigger dogs have always seemed to manage without incident. This is Maggie, one of my Shih Tzus, with my wife in the "Maggie Bag":
IMG_5693.jpg
If you go to the front door and set the bag down, she hops right in with no encouragement. I don't think she wants to stay home. We go to the horse barn every night and Maggie and one of our poodles be to come along. They stay in the car while we tend to the horses. They don't have to come. They want to come. We give them the choice every night. Maggie's sister Lucy chooses to stay home sometimes. 5 pound Otis rides in his doggie satchel:
IMG_0584.jpg

Have you had a dog stepped on? In all my years on crowded film sets, in airport security lines, and anywhere I can take me dogs that someone isn't telling me I can't, I have never had an issue with this. I like to think that I pay attention, but I do on occasion look at my phone or get distracted one way or another.
 

KarenSoCal

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My general question to anyone who cares to chime in is this: How do you feel about people taking their dogs into public places? I further question: Is our society/country too restrictive on this matter? Should we loosen up some of these laws and rules? Am I totally out of touch with reality because of my profession and the things I do with animals on a daily basis? I see the people bring their dogs into Home Depot, Walmart, Costco, Sam's Club, and other places, so I'm clearly not the only one...
I absolutely agree with you. Companion animals, like dogs, are meant to be companions, not locked away at home.

I do agree though that some owners are so obnoxious that THEY shouldn't be allowed in public places. And for the most part, we have to put up with them. I don't like screaming, food throwing children who need a good swat on the rear to be in a restaurant where I'm trying to eat and maybe even hear a friend's conversation. I say...leave the kid in the car! My dog behaves better than that!

I believe a large part of our problem taking dogs is the sue-happy mindset in this country. If anything happens out of the ordinary, someone is there who will try to take advantage and sue anyone even slightly involved. Let a dog nip someone...the dog owner, the restaurant owner, if a franchise the parent company...will all be sued for millions for an injury that may have required a bandaid.

I like the way Italy has addressed this problem. Now, I visited Italy a very long time ago, over 50 years, so I don't know if there have been changes made. But this is how it was when I was there.

Leashed dogs were allowed everywhere. Public transportation, restaurants, stores, official buildings...everywhere. No dogs were allowed on any furniture or seats...all 4 feet on the ground or floor at all times. Of course the owner was required to pick up after the dog. If walking on a sidewalk, the dog would go to the curb to relieve itself.

There was never a dogfight or bite. There seemed to be two reasons for this...1: the dogs were trained in public starting very young. I would see someone carrying a small puppy and put it on the floor of a train or bus to show it how to behave there. The pups never knew any other way to behave.

Reason # 2, and this is what made all of this possible...every dog started wearing a wire cage muzzle as a puppy, every time it was in public. This is not in any way mean or cruel! When wearing one, a dog can eat a treat, drink water, pant, and even partially yawn. It does not restrict him, except he cannot bite. The dogs were comfortable, happy to be with their people, and no one worried about a bite or fight. This, I believe, is what the USA should do. Dogs are not a health threat in a restaurant...they lay under the table quietly hoping someone drops something tasty. It's like saying our shoes are a health threat...do we have to go barefoot to eat? I think that after the initial period of adaptation and a generation of puppies raised this way, everyone would be happy.

If anyone doesn't know what one looks like...

New-2011-wire-labrador-dog-muzzle_LRG-1707902974.JPG

And here's one on a little dog...

il_1588xN.2589254058_pq22-1700616719.jpg
 

Tom

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I absolutely agree with you. Companion animals, like dogs, are meant to be companions, not locked away at home.

I do agree though that some owners are so obnoxious that THEY shouldn't be allowed in public places. And for the most part, we have to put up with them. I don't like screaming, food throwing children who need a good swat on the rear to be in a restaurant where I'm trying to eat and maybe even hear a friend's conversation. I say...leave the kid in the car! My dog behaves better than that!

I believe a large part of our problem taking dogs is the sue-happy mindset in this country. If anything happens out of the ordinary, someone is there who will try to take advantage and sue anyone even slightly involved. Let a dog nip someone...the dog owner, the restaurant owner, if a franchise the parent company...will all be sued for millions for an injury that may have required a bandaid.

I like the way Italy has addressed this problem. Now, I visited Italy a very long time ago, over 50 years, so I don't know if there have been changes made. But this is how it was when I was there.

Leashed dogs were allowed everywhere. Public transportation, restaurants, stores, official buildings...everywhere. No dogs were allowed on any furniture or seats...all 4 feet on the ground or floor at all times. Of course the owner was required to pick up after the dog. If walking on a sidewalk, the dog would go to the curb to relieve itself.

There was never a dogfight or bite. There seemed to be two reasons for this...1: the dogs were trained in public starting very young. I would see someone carrying a small puppy and put it on the floor of a train or bus to show it how to behave there. The pups never knew any other way to behave.

Reason # 2, and this is what made all of this possible...every dog started wearing a wire cage muzzle as a puppy, every time it was in public. This is not in any way mean or cruel! When wearing one, a dog can eat a treat, drink water, pant, and even partially yawn. It does not restrict him, except he cannot bite. The dogs were comfortable, happy to be with their people, and no one worried about a bite or fight. This, I believe, is what the USA should do. Dogs are not a health threat in a restaurant...they lay under the table quietly hoping someone drops something tasty. It's like saying our shoes are a health threat...do we have to go barefoot to eat? I think that after the initial period of adaptation and a generation of puppies raised this way, everyone would be happy.

If anyone doesn't know what one looks like...

View attachment 368363

And here's one on a little dog...

View attachment 368364
That's an interesting idea. Trade wearing a muzzle for my dog being allowed to go everywhere with me. I've done muzzle work with protection dogs, and muzzled quite a few dogs for toe nails and vet procedures, but I've never just had a dog walking around wearing one all day.

There is a ferry service over here called Catalina Express that takes people back and forth 22 miles across the ocean to and from Catalina Island. They allow dogs, but the dogs have to be in a carrier or wear a muzzle while on the boat. I've seen this many times. Dogs who do it regularly seem pretty used to it and unbothered by it.
 

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That's an interesting idea. Trade wearing a muzzle for my dog being allowed to go everywhere with me. I've done muzzle work with protection dogs, and muzzled quite a few dogs for toe nails and vet procedures, but I've never just had a dog walking around wearing one all day.

There is a ferry service over here called Catalina Express that takes people back and forth 22 miles across the ocean to and from Catalina Island. They allow dogs, but the dogs have to be in a carrier or wear a muzzle while on the boat. I've seen this many times. Dogs who do it regularly seem pretty used to it and unbothered by it.
What you both are missing, is that most people with dogs as a pet and no other experience except having them as a pet are clueless, specially the younger generations. The idea that oh well, you got bit by my dog, just put a bandaid on it is wrong and a dog that should not be in public until better trained or muzzled. That's ignorant that it's okay that a dog bites someone. That's most dog pet owners attitude and why their dogs should be left at home!
The laws that dogs can't be left in cars is a great leap forward for dogs. Way too many have died or almost died being left in cars. I can just about guarantee you, no one agreeing with you takes the steps you do to be sure your dogs are safe in the car and likely don't have to be in the car as much as yours. Remember, your dogs are well trained and is part of your job.
You may not leave your dog unattended tied to a pole, but people do it all the time. Not every dog has the fear on their face but most do. They look scared to death, staring at the last place they seen their owners.
As for dogs at festivals/art shows, seen it every time I have gone, which was usually a couple times a summer, not so much any more. Yes, small dogs and larger dogs. Once in a while a small dog might be carried. Again though, your dogs are trained and used to having to be in crowds and around a lot of different things, most other dogs are not.
As for a muzzle law, ridiculous! I will never put a muzzle on my dogs in order for it to go in public with me. Training needs to be done not a muzzle and if you can't do that then leave it home! Please don't explain how a muzzle is used or safe or not restrictive. I know all about them and dogs. Most of my life jobs have been with dogs/animals, besides raising, training (confirmation and obedience) and showing my own.
 

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When I lived in Germany we would take our German shepherd everywhere, which was allowed. He would go to the festivals, grocery, out to restaurants...he was a very good boy. The only thing that bothers me about people bringing their dogs is when they allow the dogs to come up to you or your pet WITHOUT asking. My daughter likes dogs but hate when they jump on her. If you can't control your dog and respect others boundaries, leave the dog at home.
 

wellington

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When I lived in Germany we would take our German shepherd everywhere, which was allowed. He would go to the festivals, grocery, out to restaurants...he was a very good boy. The only thing that bothers me about people bringing their dogs is when they allow the dogs to come up to you or your pet WITHOUT asking. My daughter likes dogs but hate when they jump on her. If you can't control your dog and respect others boundaries, leave the dog at home.
That's the problem with most owners. They have a dog. That's it, they have no clue how the dog should act. Ones dog should not get in anyone's space to even be able to bite someone, but so many think their dog is the gift of the world and everyone needs to see it up close and personal.
I have witnessed too many times the people who's dogs should be left at home. The kids too!
 

Yvonne G

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Way back in the dark ages you got a dog because that what you do. But the dog was either relegated to the backyard or allowed to run free in the neighborhood. There are still a lot of people like that. I'm thinking that a good percentage of the 'found' dogs you read about on Nextdoor are just dogs allowed to roam the neighborhood, and not lost dogs at all.

Then at the other end of the spectrum are the ones who coddle the dog and talk baby talk to it and think their little doggie can do no wrong.

I think it's a good idea to keep dogs out of restaurants. Not because of the dog, but because quite a few dog owners (and parents) don't keep the dog (and kid) under control.
 

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I also hate retractable leashes. It seems that the people who use them let the dog go and do whatever the dog wants to do. Less responsibility for the owner.
 

TammyJ

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This is a nice discussion. I hope none of us here ends up being muzzled for bad behaviour in a public place. Tom, you have a wonderful, interesting job and you have your ways to make it work, and your dogs are obviously well cared and happy and know they are safe. Some others, not so much! Some people bunch all dogs into one category: dangerous, dirty and undeserving of respect. I say, steer well clear of those people. Here in Jamaica, signs are posted in all shopping malls and other public places: Absolutely no pets. Period. They all get bunched into one permanent BAD.
 

wellington

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Way back in the dark ages you got a dog because that what you do. But the dog was either relegated to the backyard or allowed to run free in the neighborhood. There are still a lot of people like that. I'm thinking that a good percentage of the 'found' dogs you read about on Nextdoor are just dogs allowed to roam the neighborhood, and not lost dogs at all.

Then at the other end of the spectrum are the ones who coddle the dog and talk baby talk to it and think their little doggie can do no wrong.

I think it's a good idea to keep dogs out of restaurants. Not because of the dog, but because quite a few dog owners (and parents) don't keep the dog (and kid) under control.
So very true, both in the dark ages and now.
I'd say more dogs are trained now days compared to years ago. But, still not to the extent they should be to be in restaurants etc
Then if you compare the city dogs to country living dogs, the dark ages still shows up here and there with the country dogs, sadly.
 

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As for the muzzle law. What if it's the muzzle or no walking my dog? What about the people who own XL Bullies or other "banned" dogs?
 

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I'm glad that we can have a discussion like this without any flaming...cuz I'm the one...I dislike dogs...my main thing is I know it's not the dog...it's how their keeper treats them...my problem...I live in a manufactured housing development containing 240 houses, most costing close to $200k. The habit is to walk their dogs who then poop or pee in my yard several times daily...a part of my garden is along the street so I have dog poop smears and urine on my decorations, or my rocks, with plant starts dying from dog waste. The "rules" here are that you cannot allow your dog to urinate or sniff and poop in any private property, but most don't follow the rules. So I either have to buy garden gloves or weed barehanded getting unseen dog waste on my hands. I have 2 dogs in the crouch position with a big NO on it...I still get dog waste...I have no trespassing signs that get peed on. I clean 2 or 3 poop piles every freakin day...I have asked the dog walkers not to use my yard for a dog toilet but dog people seem to think everyone should love their undisciplined ugly damn dog because they do. I absolutely hate dogs in the grocery store, or restaurants or concerts or not contained in public, most on the end of a leash while the owners look at cans on a shelf...at the Saturday market the dogs get unruly in the crowds. It's important to remember NOT EVERYONE LIKES DOGS. I do not want any strange dogs to walk up to me. I get nervous when the owner allows this and does not see that I am getting anxious and backing away. This should NEVER happen to me. Control your dogs, having them in the 'heel' position in public. Frankly, I hate dogs in public...and don't believe cats should be allowed to roam outside.
And I want to say that Malinois dogs are extremely high strung and not for the novice keeper, but Tom's Malinois' are calm and quiet and very well trained...
 

wellington

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As for the muzzle law. What if it's the muzzle or no walking my dog? What about the people who own XL Bullies or other "banned" dogs?
It that case, which I hope never happens, muzzle the dog and walk them.
But for it to be a law, that all dogs need to be muzzled if in public is as ignorant as grouping all dogs are well trained and should be allowed in any public place. Or that all "Bully" breeds are vicious. That's all from people that are unknowledgeable about dogs/breeds.
 
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