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Old 03-22-2013, 02:01 PM
Toller_08's Avatar
Toller_08 Toller_08 is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2006
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I'm learning how to live with my very first "OMG I just met you and I love you and you're my new best friend!!" dog.

I've gotta say, while it's a nice change from Dance who wants zero to do with new people and is reactive (but not a bite risk - she just barks without thinking and hides), I hope when Journey grows up she's more reserved.

The Dobermans are naturally aloof dogs and it's one of my favourite things about them. I love taking them out and having them not care about people. To me, Keira is perfection in that regard. People can touch her, hug her, do whatever, and she just stands there and takes it with a very indifferent attitude. Ripley is slightly less tolerant of people and will avoid hugs (which people shouldn't do to a strange dog anyway), but he too is accepting yet indifferent when it comes to anything else. As puppies, both of them were a little more "Oh, I should go say hi!", but they quickly grew out of that with no proofing or training on my part. As they matured, they just lost interest in strangers. Their people are their entire world, and they don't care if anyone else exists or not. They're friendly in that they're not aggressive and they're beyond polite and tolerant, but like I said, they just really don't care at all about other people. The only time they do is when you're in our home. Then you're obligated to touch them for the entire time (they think) haha. They are my ideal when it comes to how a dog should be with strangers. I'm learning I have a strong preference for a dog who loves their person/family and is aloof (but not shy or aggressive) toward others.

With that said, Journey's love for people doesn't interfere with life, and TBH, it's nice to have such a social, lovey dog when someone decides to pet or stare at her out of the blue. Sometimes it can be a challenge as it rewards the person for being rude and touching my dog without asking, but it's not an issue with her that I have (just the people). Despite her love for people, I'm still very obviously her favourite person and she always comes back to me and wants to know what we're doing next. She's just the first dog I've ever really had to work on ignoring people with and also the first dog that it's been important to give a "go say hi" cue to. She's actually very good at ignoring people and paying attention to what I've asked of her. The only time I really need to enforce it is when somebody is being really exciting, which can be hard for her to resist. And it's sometimes hard for me to be more exciting than new people, especially in public, although I try.

Whereas with Dance, I never know how she's going to react. I'm super-vigilant when I'm out in public with her and am always ready to block somebody from touching her or tell them not to taunt or stare at her. I don't want her to bark and scare somebody, but I also don't want her to be stressed. So taking her out in public can be tiresome for me, and it's gotten in the way of pretty much all of the hopes and plans I had for her when I got her.

So, in short, having had dogs now on all areas of the spectrum, I would certainly take Journey's friendliness (which is fine and something I like most of the time) over Dance's shyness (which I never want again) anyday, but my preference will always be for the Dobermans' aloofness.

Last edited by Toller_08; 03-22-2013 at 02:30 PM.
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