In a nutshell, some dogs just need their personal space respected for a number of different reasons.
It is never prudent to approach a dog you don’t know without asking first, but this project serves as an important tool to indicate that it is best to leave a particular dog alone. The Yellow Dog Project provides a way to identify certain dogs so that other people, including children, know to stay away or to keep their own dogs closer. This allows the Yellow Dog and his human time to get out of the way when passing them in public. The Yellow Dog Project encourages owners to put a yellow ribbon on the dog’s leash or to wear a yellow bandanna.
There are a number of reasons why a dog should not be approached. Aggression would be the most obvious reason, but there are other behavioral and health reasons to consider as well. It helps dog owners identify dogs who are uncomfortable around other dogs and people or who have medical reasons to do so. Here is a list of reasons:
- The dog may be in training
- He/she may be very nervous
- He/she may be very old and arthritic
- He/she may have health issues, such as diabetes, thyroid problems or be blind, for example
- He/she may be recovering from a surgery or medical treatment
- He/she may be a rescue dog being rehabilitated. The world can be a very scary place for these dogs.
- He/she may have had a bad experience with another dog
- He/she may simply not like other dogs
- A female may be in heat (not advisable to be walking her)
If you are out with your dog, and you see a dog wearing a yellow ribbon, please give the dog space and always be sure your dog is properly leashed unless you’re in a legal off-leash area.
This project is doing so many wonderful things for dogs and their humans in general. Let’s spread the education and help the movement grow.