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Tips on practicing proper dog manners outdoors

After sharing about the things you can do with your dog recently, we want to share some tips on practicing good manners when bringing your dog outdoors, this is prevent misunderstandings and also to minimize accidents that can happen to both you and other people's dogs. We want to keep the country as dog friendly as possible, there are more and more irresponsible owners appearing and this is not healthy for dog lovers like us, we hope everyone can work together to create harmony between dogs and people.

Do note that the tips suggested are based on our knowledge, most of them do not reflect on the laws in Singapore, personally we do not feel that everything has to be forced to make peace, people need to learn and judge things based on their conscience than relying on fines to know what is right and wrong.


Keep untrained dogs on leash at all times
This is very important, to always keep your untrained dog on a leash, dogs that rush to any people or dogs they see are very dangerous, they can get into accidents, fights or even shock passerby. By being trained, the dog has to be very good on recall, the dog should be able to walk beside the owner, it should also be good with basic commands, do not assume that your dog is ready to be off leashed when it's just following you. Even with retractable leashes, it should not be unlocked loosely and allow your dog to run far in front of you, this will be no different from putting it off leash and accidents can still happen!

Muzzle dogs that has aggression
Whether it is a small or large breed dog, if you have one that snaps without warning, please make an effort to put a muzzle on your dog. Unless you have a trainer to guide you, never let your aggressive dog get near to other dogs without a muzzle on, I have seen a lot of cases where owners thinks that their dog is aggressive because someone made it angry, thus blaming on the other party when their dog is the one that caused the injury, this is not a good reason for your dog to snap at others, as responsible owners we should always make the best possible decision for our dog. Muzzles come in many designs and there are a lot of comfortable ones out there so there are no reason why you should not muzzle your dog if it has signs of aggression, a lot of dogs are just fearful of things because they are rarely taken out for walks and socialization, thus muzzles are just a temporary tool to protect you and other people's dogs.

Pick up your dog's poop
This may sounds trivial but it is actually one of the most important thing to take note when bringing your dog outdoors, to pick up your dog's poop! Nobody enjoy walking along a park having to see and smell dog poop, or worst stepping on them, learning to pick up your dog's poop can help to show people that dog owners can also be responsible. Use poop bags and throw them into the bin after picking after your dog, if you run out of poop bags or forget to bring one, either use a tissue paper or ask one from other dog owners nearby, do note that using tissue should not be a permanent solution as it can cause the rubbish bin to smell very badly and attract lots of flies. A lot of people put the blame on dogs when they see dog poop though the fault actually lies on the owners, this is not healthy for everyone in the long run so please put some effort to help keep the country dog friendly! Also, contrary to popular beliefs, dog urine and poop does not help to fertilize plants/grasses, they actually harm them.


Do not feed other people's dog without permission
Most dog owners are very generous to share their food/treats with other dogs, however it is still good to first ask the respective owners before giving any food to other dogs. The reason is pretty straightforward if you think about it, first of all you do not understand the owner nor the dog, it may be possible that the dog is allergic to certain food or the owner simply do not like strangers to give his/her dog without permission, there are many other reasons that owners do not like their dog to be fed and we should always respect their decisions, for example, we do not let Amber eat any unknown food/treats from strangers because we don't want her to skip her meals later on, we also do not know what is in content of the food given and this is a risk to us. Dogs love food and they may not know when to stop, of course if your dog is running to another person begging for food, simply walk over and notify the person or just bring your dog back, there are actually dogs that has food aggression and this can cause unforeseen fights.

Do not interact with other people's dogs without permission
Another safety rule to take note of, never let your dog sniff or play with another dog without first accessing if the other dog is stable, it will also be good to ask the owner if he/she is okay with it, there are many dogs that are aggressive and/or fearful so you need to take note, even if interaction is taking place it's always good to keep your dog on a leash, this way you can quickly pull your dog away if anything unexpected happens. Same thing for you, do not touch/approach other people's dog without first knowing if they are okay with it.

Do not openly reveal your dog in places that do not allow dogs
Yes, we understand that Singapore is not a very dog friendly place but we still want to bring our dogs to "fun places" at times (we ourselves do it from time to time), however it is not necessary to always reveal your dog in places that do not allow dogs in the first place. Places like supermarkets, coffee shops and even shopping malls are some of the popular places that do not allow dogs, most of the time it won't be much of a problem if we keep our dogs in a carrier but some people just want to test further by revealing their dog, or even worst, letting their dog out to free roam in these places, always be considerate and think about others, this although may seem nothing to you can actually surprise those that are afraid or cannot touch dogs.


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