Dog Social Lives
Whenever I see single dogs in the neighbourhood who are always barking like crazy whenever they see other dogs around, I know right away that these particular dogs are not socialized as their owners have prevented them from any contact with other dogs early on. Dog socialization is considered by trainers to be an important element of overall dog obedience training starting at puppyhood.
Not saying that our dogs have to necessarily like all other dogs. Many of our small dog members in our group including my Chester does not particularly like big dogs but being with other small dogs is just fine. However, some of these neighbourhood dogs do not get along with any other dogs no matter what size. This is a real shame since these dogs will never know the happiness possible from having other doggie friends in contrast to the regular dogs who come out with us in our Small Dogs Outings Meetup group.
We as dog owners end up having total control over our dogs’ social lives. It is up to us to get our dogs out with their doggie friends even if it means getting in our cars to drive somewhere for scheduled outings. Yes this may sometimes be an inconvenience to us as humans but we do this for our dogs since otherwise they are the ones being isolated at home without any of their doggie friends around. This is why I try my best at getting my two dogs out once or twice per week if possible so that they can be with others.
Small Dogs Outings Meetup Group Membership Purge
In our Small Dogs Outings Meetup group, I think many members had the right initial intentions when first joining up with us. But what I noticed recently is that upon a closer look at our membership, a significant number of our members not only have never been out to a single event with us, but they have not even logged onto our group website in over a year.
It is quite clear that for these particular members, our Meetup group has not been meeting their needs and interests. Therefore I removed about 60 members from our group membership as a purge this long weekend. We will continue to do this on a rolling basis as other members reach a year without logging in, they will be removed.
Fortunately we do have a regular group of dogs and owners who do come out. We would much rather have a smaller but active membership than a larger and generally inactive one. I only hope that the members who have not been active are finding other ways to give their dogs social lives.
For the sake of the overall well being of their dogs, they don’t necessarily have to come out with us as they can go out and socialize with other dogs in their neighbourhoods or other groups. But if they are not getting any social time with other dogs at all, then the owners are the ones at fault since they have the total control over their pets’ social lives.
These owners of course can come up with all sorts of excuses such as too busy work schedules, etc. But come on, then why have a dog if you neglect to give it the opportunity to have a rich social life?