(Closed) Dog Park Behavior…

posted 4 years ago in Pets
Post # 2
5475 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

She was showing submission.  Maybe since the bigger dog caught up to her so quickly, it startled her and she reacted by submitting?

Post # 3
9082 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

It’s a sign of submission.

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Post # 4
817 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2013 - Mansion House at the MD Zoo

MrsD41503:  It sounds like she’s a submissive dog to begin with and, since she’s a puppy, she doesn’t totally understand how to play. She was probably like, well I wanted you to chase me, not catch me. She may grow out of some of that. She might actually be helped by being at the dog park with several other dogs so she can practice playing–I know that sounds weird but they really do have to learn how to act around other dogs. She may also pick up on when you are stressed or worried and think that something is wrong–if you can sit next to her and pet her and the other dogs at the same time and talk softly she may get the message that everything is ok and other dogs are friends. You could also look into puppy play classes for some more supervised socialization–our local Petco does them for free every weekend, supervised by their trainer. Again, just to help her learn how to play and what is normal and how to ‘talk’ to other dogs about what she likes and doesn’t like.

Also does your dog park have a separate area for small dogs? Some parks have a fenced off area for small dogs, puppies, and older dogs that don’t really run around and play so physically. (Small dogs can also be in the big dog area if they want, it’s mostly just to keep an area that’s calmer for dogs that are more timid.) If you started out there she might get some practice with being around other dogs and feel more confident when she goes to the big dog area.

I really want to commend you for continuing to try with her. Sometimes owners at dog parks can be a little, for lack of a better word, crazy. We actually stopped going to our local dog park after a guy screamed at us and told us to take our dog out because she was barking. She was standing near other dogs who she had been playing with, barking and bowing and slapping the ground to try to get them to chase her again. It’s perfectly normal behavior, not aggressive at all. He was such an ass that we haven’t been back since–now we do school and play with our friends’ dogs. I don’t say this to scare you, just to commend you for not freaking out. People get a little ridiculous, especially with pits.

Also you violated the cardinal WB pet thread rule–no pictures!! Sadface. Here’s my baby who caused all the controversy with her barking. AS you can see, she’s a holy terror. 🙂

Post # 5
213 posts
Helper bee

MrsD41503:  I agree with the other two posters, it is a sign of submission. Dog parks can be intimidating. It sounds like your dog wants to play, but once the play starts, especially with the big dogs, it gets to be too much.

You may want to build up her confidence. Is there a little dog section as well as the section you have been playing in? If not, you will just have to be slesctive of when you go in and what dogs she plays with.

Post # 6
5221 posts
Bee Keeper

Submission. My dogs do this ( for reference, I have a 4 yo boxer/terrier mix and a 10 month old pit mix), and it is the older boxer mix that usually gets the puppy to lay flat on his back. The puppy will start “yelping”, which at first made me think my older dog was hurting him… but come to find out, that was just his way of communicating with the other dog. Now the little punk play yelps all the time. Some dogs are just vocal! 

Post # 7
5978 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2014


I 2nd what soontobeMrsBoo: said about some dog owners being crazy. Or irresponsible. When I lived in FL I learned not to go to the dog park at a certain time because this guy would bring his unsocialized large scary dog to the park.

I don’t know if they play fine and then suddenly don’t like each other. What do you mean? Maybe they just tire of one dog and go look for another. Or do you mean fight? I have 4 dogs and the 2 little ones play together all.the.time. But every now and again one of them will throw the other one a warning growl or yip because maybe that one was playing too hard. They don’t fight, the other one just eases up a bit. They know how to communicate!

A socialized dog is GREAT to live with!! One of mine for sure isn’t and I haven’t brought the newest to a park yet.



Post # 8
5978 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

soontobeMrsBoo:  PS- I can’t believe someone would get mad at your sweet looking dog! Dogs bark! I have a beagle and she would howl-y bark when she got really excited during play time.


These are all pretty bad pix, but you get the idea!

Post # 9
1895 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Laying down like that is a sign of submission. But I agree with PP, that I think she got startled at how quick the other dog got to her…. My one pup will squeal and yelp when she’s excited(even tho she’s laying down in the submission way). It sounds like someone is torturing her when she does that.

Post # 10
30 posts
  • Wedding: August 2015

Yes, submission. We brought our dog (pit mix) to the dog park a couple of times, but stopped because dogs have personalities just like people, and not all mix. You really never know the temperaments of the dogs at the park, their level of socialization, or history of agression. We started to get comments about our dog because of his breed. In the end, if a smaller dog starts something and my dog reacts, he will be the one blamed. He has scars on the tips of both ears from being nipped by a pug, and had his poor toe stuck between boards on a patio trying to retreat from an agressive tiny poodle. Needless to say, we don’t bring him to dog parks anymore and he has a couple of best doggie friends that he gets to play with often 🙂 Not to mention he gets along just fine with my rabbit! And I can’t resist sharing a picture of my precious guys.

Post # 11
307 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

We have a 65-pound Rottweilier mix who loves to play with our neighbors’ Shih Tzu and teeny Yorkie. The Yorkie almost always rolls over when our dog gets close to him and sometimes yelps like he’s hurt. But if our dog walks away the Yorkie will bark at him until he comes back to play. It worried me at first, thinking my dog was hurting him, but it’s just how they play together and we think it’s funny now. 

Post # 12
8394 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

One of my dogs does the same thing. He loves to chase, but doesn’t like to be chased back. He’s not a super confident dog and he will roll over and yelp if the other dog “catches” him (unless it’s a dog he knows super well). I’d just keep working with her.

Our issue is usually crappy owners that won’t call their dog off of ours once he rolls over. Then he REALLY starts to get scared when this big huge dog won’t let him off the ground. And I do so love pulling random rots/st. bernards/danes off of my corgi. sigh.

Post # 13
513 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014 - Stevens Estate

My little dog does the same thing around other big dogs..lays down on his back with the ears back. He might become more comfortable at the park the more he gets used to going and becomes more familiar with the surroundings there.

I wish I could bring my pups to a dog park, but my big dog just dosnt get along with strange dogs. I just dont trust her around other dogs and shes 90lbs…to much dog to take a chance that she wont do anything naughty lol. But good luck with your new pup!

Here is my obligatory pic

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by  DaniDev143.

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