What is it about us dogs that strangers think they can just come right up to us and start ruffling our fur and even worse stroke us on our head? UGH! Now, there are those dogs like retrievers and setters who are excited to meet EVERYONE and wag and drool until they are rewarded with human contact. But many of us dogs like to be approached more slowly and from the side so that we have time to check YOU out, get your scent, and make sure you are friendly.
Please, please ask our pet parent, “May I pet your dog?” when you are meeting us. There may be some special tips you will be given about how and where to touch us that will make our meet and greet pleasant for everyone. Fourth graders learn and practice many of these tips in the Kids 4 Critters class so listen to them if they tell you the safe way to approach dogs. For an interactive activity about this go to: http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/fleenj-learning/k4c/ReadySetPet/story_html5.html
Did you know there are some dogs that should not be approached at all? Look for a yellow ribbon on a dog’s collar or leash. This ribbon communicates important information. Thanks to the “Yellow Dog Project” word is spreading about the meaning of the ribbon.
Please follow my advice and most times you will hear: