Advertisements

How Do Dogs Make Friends?

As my siblings unfortunately learned when I was born, you can’t choose your family. The same is true for Eko and Penny – they’re stuck together.Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

“You hear that, Eko? You’re stuck with me!”

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

“Oh yeah, well you’re stuck with ME!”

Thankfully, Eko and Penny continue to bond very well as siblings. With her family life set, Penny now focuses her attention on making new friends. As a puppy, she is fairly indiscriminate about the particulars of dog friendship.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

She’ll chat it up at the watercooler

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

And bravely approach lost polar bear cubs

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

At the beach, Penny plays with whatever dog happens to be closest at the moment

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

 

And she always plays at full speed

Eko on the other hand is more selective when it comes to playmates. Somehow – and I have no idea how – he seems to know immediately whether he wants to romp with another dog or not. The same goes for most of the other adult dogs we meet at the park. It seems like some kind of speed-friend-dating thing that all dogs do.

Whatever the language, code or shorthand adult dogs know for selecting friends, it still eludes puppy Penny.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

Ears back, tail tucked – this dog sent a strong message to Penny she did not want to play. Clearly Penny did not receive the transmission, so I moved her to a different part of the park to play

Like any pup, Penny has a lot to learn about the different signals other dogs send. I know it will come with time, but I’m still not sure what “it” is. Even when not making any overt signals, it seems adult dogs can still expertly read each other.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, puppy, dog beach, chicago, adventure, marking our territory

 

Friendship is a give and take. Penny’s nailed the “take” part but she still has some work to do in the “give” department

My plan is to keep a closer eye on Eko to see if there are any discernable patterns in who he likes to play with. I’ll also see if any pattern develops with Penny, but I doubt that will happen anytime soon.

What about your pup? Do they have a friend profile or certain types of dog (size, coat length, etc) who they prefer to play with? If you have any theories about how our pups choose theirs friends I would love to hear them!

Advertisements

35 Comments

This group has been tough. Mazie was really abused and I can’t be sure with her. She is OK with little dogs, does NOT like large dogs or ANY black dogs. She is not aggressive, just really on guard and not relaxed. Just fine if they are little. The Puffs, they are passive dogs and fall over if Jessie the 5lb poodle gets to bouncy near them so……pretty hopeless group here. Used to happy, well adjusted, confident Samoyeds from having Oskar and his brother Jester, then just Oskar, so this is really different.Tried puppy class with both the Puffs, it was disaster and they were miserable. I am resigned to have wall flowers I guess 🙂

Like people, pets come in all over the place in terms of personality. Your group is well suited to watch the world and ponder the mysteries of dog life. Penny ain’t much of a philosopher, so someone’s got to do it.

I Would hate to be the one in the way of one of Penny’s “Full Throttle” assaults. The other dogs seem not to mind; but Eko is ready and willing to retaliate at any given moment. Must be a blood bond, so to speak, especially if none is spilled from it. It’s still pure joy when those two get together. Lucky you, Will!
Dottie and Tuffy-Cat

Luckily most dogs seem to love Penny’s puppy energy. And when she tuckers one dog out, there’s usually another pup waiting for a turn. If not, romping with Eko is always a good time.

1 2 3 4

Add a Response

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: