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no enclosed dog parks
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    In my previous life every single dog run was enclosed (new york). There were lots of choices. The only time I ever had him off leash was very cautiously in a prospect park morning dog meet, which on nice mornings looked like dog heaven as drawn by a cartoonist (minus the huge golden bones sticking out of the ground), and up-state NY on trails, where he seemed to naturally want to stick alongside me.

    Ok now fast forward to another part of the world, and another time, we've this pup coming. I'm a bit apprehensive because there isn't a probably not a single enclosed dog park in this city. There are two off-leash meeting spots within walking distance, they are both overlook the ocean and are the kind of unfenced oval passed by a quiet road sort of thing. Within driving distance there are a load more of these sorts of options. There is also a coastal track and suburban street maze of walking options. All that is good.


    I used to really enjoy watching my dog play with others. They can't do that on a leash. Should I just put the desire to see him romp with friends on ice until my new pup is well grown and I'm familiar with how sticky he is going to be? in a way I fear that if I don't get him used to a morning play with other dogs when he is younger, when he gets older it will actually be harder to introduce the idea. Also if i keep him away from the local mob, because a leashed dog tends to feel cornered when a big lab runs right up, won't he turn out less social?

    what's a good plan.
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    Definitely DO NOT let your puppy off leash. You can try using a long leash like a 30 or 50 ft, a lot of Shiba members use that and it gives the dog space, and also gives the owner reassurance. Where exactly are you located right now? Do they offer dog training classes? Usually when there are dog training classes, there are also puppy social classes which lets the dogs mingle and play :)
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    well I wasn't thinking of an off leash pup. Was thinking of easing him into the idea as he gets towards 1 year old. The only time I had a scare with my first shiba off leash (as an adult) was when the park was full of BBQs. The smell was too much!

    yep I am sure there are local classes. (They'd want to be much better than the ones I had access to previously though. 10 people sitting in the basement of petco kind of thing).

    I should just get used to the idea now of pretty much ignoring the local off leash gatherings I guess :( Super long leashes .. hmm. worth a try.
    Posts: 1507
    Not knowing where you are located I can only venture some guesses. Even though there might not be enclosed dog runs in your area there might be areas that could serve the purpose. Maybe an enclosed tennis court or basketball court that is not being used. Maybe there is an indoor dog park near you like Zoom Room.

    Long leashes are good but can become fatiguing; especially when they get wet and caked with mud.

    My girl Penny is a "velcro Shiba" (excellent recall). It is so tempting to take her off leash. However, a passing squirrel or cat and she would be off.
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    The super long leashes is commonly used as a stepping stone to having a Shiba COMPLETELY off leash.

    But like everything else, it depends on the Shiba. I let Bootz off leash when she was around 10 months. But i practice recall EVERYDAY, and was confident since I had my bf with me if anything happen. Our dog park was not enclosed and included a beach with dangerous cliffs. It turned out great. She responded well, even when chasing another dog out of sight, she came right back when she heard me call.
    Post edited by Bootz at 2012-08-23 23:37:21
  • glitchglitch
    Posts: 189
    I can completely understand where you're coming from. I love watching Kazu play and it's frustrating for him to not run around with the other dogs in the dog park. I am very worried that he'd run off because his recall is not 100%, especially if there are other dogs around.

    I've tried the 50ft leash.. to be honest we had HORRIBLE experiences and I feel the other dog owners giving us dirty looks. The past few times we've gone, he ends up running up and down slopes, into the water, in mud. Most of the time the rope gets caught on people ankles and other dogs when he's chasing them around, or the rope gets caught on his own tail or legs. I got rope burn a couple times on my hands fetching the rope while he's running, and there was one time we were walking calmly and he just all of a sudden started running because he saw a dog and he cut across another person and rope burned their leg.

    I'm hoping to find some enclosed dog parks in my area nearby as well. In the meantime we do bring him to doggy daycare on occasion so he still gets some free time around other dogs. The only problem is I don't really get to sit and watch him play which is part of the fun.
    Post edited by glitch at 2012-08-24 00:30:55
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    Yeah the watching them play is the best. That's probably why many owners get two!

    there is a local small beach that strictly speaking is no dogs but it is used by fishermen not people and the local dog owners don't seem to get council heat if they are diligent with the doggy bags. The good thing is it walled in with rocks and single stairway in and stair out, so if I'm careful when he gets older I can see him having some off leash doggy play there especially if two of the family go and one plays sentry.

    oh well, it is going to be interesting. In some ways Shiba is such an inner city dog. Big cities = enclosed dog runs. Suburbia =/= enclosed runs.
  • I've found a perfect solution to be children's playgrounds -- of course when nobody is in them. They are enclosed, are either grassy or have soft chips on the ground and there is plenty of room to run around. As long as there is no sign saying "No Dogs" (some have that posted) empty kid's playgrounds always work for me when Dakota has a play date with the neighbor's dog. Maybe you could find a friend and then look for an empty playground?
  • Well, many of think dog parks are a bad idea anyway, esp. for dogs like Shibas. It's just too unpredictable, and there often dogs that shouldn't be there, with owners that don't pay attention.

    I guess you don't have a fenced yard? Or know anyone with a fenced yard? Because that's a better option anyway. But if you don't, there are options for offleash play. You should find a good puppy class anyway, one that includes lots of puppy play time, so that's probably a start. (I didn't know, for example, that the local humane society shelter offers a weekly puppy play time until I took one of their classes, but they do, and I took my pup to it for awhile). Once you find some classes, I bet you'll find more options. and there are other options too, if you must, like finding enclosed areas, even tennis courts, at off times, to practice recalls.

    Just because he doesn't play in a group every day doesn't mean he will be reactive or won't. It certainly helps to get dogs used to a variety of dogs--and in this case, if you really want to do this every day, a doggie day care is likely the best answer--but dogs turn out just fine who don't play every day. And by contrast, even a well socialized dog may be reactive. Many people find Shibas get less and less tolerant of strange dogs anyway as they age, so it may be that your dog wouldn't really continue to be a dog park dog in any case.

    As to how "sticky" he's going to be....well...there are some Shibas who work off leash. But not many.
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    yes we have a fenced backyard, it isn't large enough for human running around. For a pup it is an adventure playground but for a full Shiba it will be not so much for exercise.

    I've just discovered there is a doggy daycare around the corner. the lady always has a bunch of dogs and some locals send their dogs there for the day to let off steam (for 50 bucks, ouch). So that would certainly be an option now and again just for the freedom.
  • kayla4554kayla4554
    Posts: 169
    $50 for one day of doggy daycare?!??! That seems pretty high! I pay $25 a day for daycare and thats on the high end...

    kayla and maya <3
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    @Glitch, long leashes don't work well with busy dog parks. Best to practice with the Shiba and yourself so you can get the recall training going.

    @Kayla4554, I think it depends on the area you're from and how popular that day care is. I'm from San Francisco and our prices average around 35/day for daycare, 45 being on the high end.

  • Wow, we pay 16 bucks a day for daycare. I guess smallish midwestern towns really are just way cheaper.
  • JuniJuni
    Posts: 1263
    In one way young dogs can be easier to have off leash as they are less independent and might not have developed a strong prey drive yet. Last year we went on a shiba walk in the forest, there were around 10 Shibas running free. Juni found it really exciting and made some friends so she had no thoughts of venturing off and also kept looking around to make sure we were there too. Nowadays even when she plays with her favourite dog she stops to look around and I can see her thinking 'wait a minute, didn't I once see a deer here...?maybe I should go investigate...?'
    We also use a childrens playground area nearby at night for some Shiba500 but of course make sure she's gone potty first.
  • RyanRyan
    Posts: 293
    We adopted a second shiba, and this has helped with bells desire to play and interact with other dogs. We organise play dates, or group outings, but avoid other dogs in public. When on leash they are meant to be behaving, not playing.
    I have ordered some long lines for use in the hills, there are leash laws, and I have reasonable control, 6' is often too short when they want to walk through a creek while I cross a bridge.

    It sounds to me like it is your views and perspective that you should review, not your dogs desires...
    Bella (Sherae Aka Akicho) | F | Born 27/1/2012
    Suki (Aust. Ch. Betlin Takaisuki) | M | Born 03/02/2005, adopted 10/09/2012
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    "It sounds to me like it is your views and perspective that you should review, not your dogs desires..."

  • RyanRyan
    Posts: 293
    Referring to this section:

    "I used to really enjoy watching my dog play with others. They can't do that on a leash. Should I just put the desire to see him romp with friends on ice until my new pup is well grown and I'm familiar with how sticky he is going to be? in a way I fear that if I don't get him used to a morning play with other dogs when he is younger, when he gets older it will actually be harder to introduce the idea."

    Oh, and do your best to socialize, but also don't freak out if you feel you have missed something, many of us manage to resocialize older dogs. There is a thread with a check list, with all of it achievable on leash from memory.
    Bella (Sherae Aka Akicho) | F | Born 27/1/2012
    Suki (Aust. Ch. Betlin Takaisuki) | M | Born 03/02/2005, adopted 10/09/2012
  • jelliesjellies
    Posts: 142
    Since his shots have well and truly taken the local dog area has proven fruitful, when he finds the "right" dog, he plays like crazy.

    I just let the leash go he drags it. It is all working out ok.
  • tatonkatatonka
    Posts: 1210
    Yeah a 50 ft leash seemed to tangle less than I thought it would. Depends on the dog though. My friend's little terrier mix gets tangled up in his simple harness, a 4 ft leash, etc. He's like an entropy magnet..
    Post edited by tatonka at 2012-10-22 07:39:29
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4785
    "Entropy magnet" made me lol
    "Common sense isn't so common"
    photo c5d87957-61b6-48af-a440-4187cbfc861b_zps88ccdf88.jpg
  • redcattooredcattoo
    Posts: 1960
    Our Shiba's recall is somewhere around 100% if nothing else distracts him and around a negative 150% if something else gets his attention. We are really lucky to have lots of wonderful fenced in dog parks within 20-30 minutes of us and lots of very positive experiences with dogs and owners who use them. I understand how fun it is to watch the unstructured play with other dogs.

    Due to the fact we are considering doing agility competitions with him the future, and for safety reasons, we also know we have to really focus on getting his come recall as solid as we can.

    Our problem is Bear is very quick at 10 months old and even our 30 ft leash was no match yesterday for a training session on our golf course behind our house. Last night my husband and I went out with Bear to practice his come recall. We had the 30 foot leash on him and we were bouncing him back and forth between us quit successfully for a bit. We were letting the leash drag behind him so we could extend the distance beyond 30 feet (10 yards) to about 200 yards but still have a way to catch him if he started doing Shiba 500's around us.

    We felt we were at a B+ training session ....... wait ..... wait ..... yes it went down hill when the neighbor and her dog of 11 months came by on the street. I had just rewarded Bear for coming to me. I was down the golf course about 400 yds from the street. My husband was towards the street, but still about 200 yds in from the street. All of a sudden Bear saw his "friend" and took off at a full run before I could grab or step on his leash. He was so fast and so distracted by his "friend" that he even got past my husband. With his speed even 30 feet of leash wasn't enough for my husband to react quick enough catch him as he barreled past towards the street.

    Bear made it all the way to the street to play with his "friend". We were lucky our neighbor knew Bear wasn't aggressive, just in play mode, and that no cars were on the street at the time. Our neighbor easily was able to step on his leash, since now all Bear wanted to do was "play" with his friend. What an embarrassing moment though! It reinforced to us why continual practice with recall for Bear is going to have to be a must. After that, I gave us (not Bear) an F for that session.

    I guess I tell you all this because each Shiba is going to be slightly different as you see by everyone's experience and input above. You will learn what challenges you have as you begin your training with him.

    I know for me, I would never ever be able to take Bear to an unstructured play session with other dogs off leash without it being a fenced in or indoor place. I am only hoping with training, time, and age to get him to a point that I can trust him off leash at a structured agility event.
  • BootzBootz
    Posts: 3495
    @Tatonka, omg that 50 foot leash almost took little Jackie's head off! Lucky I untangled it in time.

    @redcattoo, yea not only recall with a Shiba is difficult but a recall with a distracted Shiba is difficult. Have you tried "leave it" command with humans/dogs?

    I never got to try the 50 ft leash with Bootz cause one day my bf and I just went, what the heck lets try this, because we were 80% confident Bootz won't run off, and had a backup plan if she did.

    Bootz recall isn't perfect but heck, i am 100% comfortable with her off leash in an unfenced area knowing she'll stay within a range. Although sometimes she likes walking off with a "pack" which i find funny. But she eventually notices I'm not there and comes running back :)
  • tatonkatatonka
    Posts: 1210
    Omg I totally missed that. Jackie is so itty bitty I'm so sorry :(

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