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Monday, July 03, 2006

Socialization & Other Lab Families

Meeting other dog breed is an important part of the socialization process for any dog. This weekend, we were able to meet a fellow Labrador Retriever online forum member at our local dog park.

The family we were supposed to meet got a little lost, so we decided to let our girl have the run of the park while we waited. After being handed a little bag of birthday treats from a fellow dog park native (who's English Setter had turned 1), we found a very large stick and started to toss it as far as we could into the river. Dakota and Cheyenne had no problems diving into the cool water to retrieve this monster of a stick and after a while, you could tell that they girls were getting tired. Even the annoying American Bulldog, who kept nipping at the girls and trying to play rough, didn't get to them as they ran until they were out of breath.

A long stroll around the park, to let the girls dry off, wore them out even more. A couple of dogs here and there stopped by to say hello but only only tried to dominate our little Cheyenne. Although she was rolled onto her back, she give this dominant male a little nip and he backed off immediately. Sure, he was about 20 lbs heavier than her but, when a girl says no, she means no!

On our way out of the park, we bumped into our lost family. A little yellow Lab pup, named Ender, greeted the girls with one huge Lab smile. We decided that since the girls still have 15 minutes left of their hour-long stay in the park, we would introduce this family to the park and to our own Lab family. It was a great experience and I realized at that moment that Lab families are quite different than other dog families. We are not reserved and have more of a out-going type of personality. I had never given a thought to the possibility that maybe the family's own personality denotes the perfect dog breed for that family. That is definitely something to think about today as I watch my girls sleeping on the floor beside me and dreaming of their next adventure in the dog park.

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Anonymous imabug said...

there are a couple of other lab families that go to one of the dog parks I frequent, and I've noticed the same thing. The other dog families take a while to see what you're like and how you behave. The lab families just jump right in like they've known you for years :)

July 06, 2006 7:10 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...

Exactly! :)

July 06, 2006 7:36 AM  

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