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Old May 3, 2005, 10:13 PM   #51
Senior Member
Join Date: June 4, 2004
Location: Birmingham AL
Posts: 617
Interacting with dogs can be as complex as people. In my work, I "deal" with dogs daily. For the most part, they will respond to your action. If you are freindly and non-threatening, they will be friendly right back. If you are fearful, they will pick up on it and start showing aggressiveness. Many dogs, in fact will "test" you, as a form of pack dominance, I guess.

Many times, their "aggressive" behavior is actually a bluff, and they are acting out of fear. If you leave them alone, they will back off. I am thinking of one that I saw today. When I first went onto its yard, it barked and snarled like I was lunch. From expereince, I sensed that it was a fear reaction, so I didn't respond in kind. Slowly, he accepted me. Today, when I opened the door of my truck, he walked up for his back scratch.

I DO respect a strange dog, though. I'm not so confident in reading dogs that I will get careless around the questionable ones. If necessary, I will kill them for protection.
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