Ugh... I'm turning into one of "those" people.
Anyway - over the past couple of months Sepp has become more and more "territorial" over our yard, especially towards other male dogs. His obedience is just about zilch when he spots one (even on a long lead), and he'll race up and down the fence, hackles up/growling/barking until the offender is out of sight. Zero recall at those times.
On walks it's the same thing... he'll get very tense and start posturing/staring, hackles up, ears back, low growling. I usually switch to the other side of the street and continue walking, or I make him sit at a fair distance until the other dog has gone out of sight. He will barely focus on me, and he will refuse any treats during those encounters. We do work on it almost daily (trying to "ignore" other dogs, at least), but it's veeeeery slow progress, and he won't be *obedient* close to one anytime soon.
Sepp has one female doggy friend whom he sees sporadically, and he gets along well w/her. He's also recently started humping Daisy and Faust, but I can easily redirect him.
So, that - in and of itself - is not a huge concern to me, because as long as we have no aggression issues within our family and/or towards the cats I'm okay w/having a "less than sociable" dog.
I have no concerns w/his behavior towards people either, and I just want to state that very clearly.
The problem is his upcoming vet visit to get his rabies. I'm almost at the point of skipping it altogether, but I know it's the law...
My vet has her practice in a converted 1-family house, and it's tiny. Especially the waiting room/reception area. There are two benches, and it's literally two steps to the reception desk.
Always crowded... and a lot of times dogs are off-lead, despite the signs all over the place to "please keep your dog leashed at all times".
Small-town living, I guess, but it's a HUGE pet peeve of mine...
At Fausts last visit I mentioned needing an appointment for Sepp, and I commented on the very small waiting room. I also asked how the staff might handle a potentially dog-aggressive dog, or if there is another entrance. There isn't. And I got:" In my seven years here we only ever had ONE serious dog fight... why??? Does your other dog BITE???" from the receptionist. While she raised her eye brows at me.
I didn't say much else at the time because I most definitely don't want Sepp to have a reputation before they even meet him, and because they all LOVE Faust to pieces... but since then I've envisioned all sorts of "maybe-scenarios" and disasters, and I can't snap out of it.
Even if we get the first or the last appointment of the day, I've been there often enough to know that there are always people w/off-leash dogs popping in - to pick up food or prescriptions, to drop stuff off... it's very unpredictable. They also do boarding, so there are dogs coming and going constantly.
There is no way around going through the waiting room, and there is literally no way to avoid other dogs... a yorkie will make the reception area look crowded.
I *think* that Sepp will not be easily managed in a situation like that. He is very strong as well, and I envision a wrestling match complete w/loud vocalization on his part... and, frankly, it's making me apprehensive and majorly anxious.
I have complete faith in him when it comes to the staff/vet - but the thought of meeting other dogs horrifies me already - and I KNOW
that I am going to communicate that to Sepp who will pick up on it immediately... and act accordingly. I have noticed that Sepp is very, very sensitive to how I feel in any given situation - and he definitely mirrors my anxieties and misgivings.
Even w/Mick I didn't feel that
apprehensive, because we always dealt w/big waiting rooms, seperate entrances, or at least more space
So, crap... we have an appointment in about two months and it's giving me nightmares. How do I best approach the staff and vet, and voice my concerns without making Sepp sound like an out-of-control blood-thirsty menace to the rest of their clients???
I want them to like him, of course, and not think they have to be afraid or tip-toe around him, but I also know that an outburst towards another dog is going to look very ugly and/or dangerous even.
Short of showing up there drunk (but *relaxed*)... what do I do?