14 Rude Habits of Dog Owners

8 min read
Dog Owner

These are some of the things people complain about the most when it comes to dog owners.

14. Not Picking Up Their Dog’s Poop

Dog Pooping
Source: Pexels

Not picking up their dog’s poop is the one thing people hate the most about rude dog owners. After all, there’s nothing worse than going out for a walk or run and stepping in a pile of doggie doo. Then there are those who do bag it up, but they just leave the bag lying there. That’s just as bad because Erin Askeland, certified animal health and behavior expert for Camp Bow Wow®, says that you also need to find an appropriate public garbage can to throw it in.

TIP: If you’re out walking your dog and you happen to catch one of these offenders in the act, The Honest Kitchen, a family-owned company that makes healthy pet food, says that you should try this: Run over to them, smile and say, “I hate when I run out of poop bags! But, don’t worry! I have an extra one for you!” Then, hand them the bag and chat with them while they pick up the poop. That way you can make sure they actually scoop it up. If, on the other hand, you happen to be out and about and stumble upon some doggie doo on the ground or in a bag that’s been left somewhere, you could consider throwing it away yourself. We know it’s not your responsibility, but you’d be doing your community a huge favor.

13. Letting Their Dog Pee on Other People’s Property

Dog Peeing On Tree
Source: Pixabay

Speaking of bodily functions, here’s another gripe people have about rude dog owners: letting their dog pee on other people’s property! According to an article published by Reader’s Digest, Neil Cohen, owner and head trainer at Sit Means Sit, says that “while it is in male dogs’ nature to ‘mark,’ there is nothing that says he needs to do it anywhere he chooses.” Letting him do so “shows poor manners for the human and the dog. Additionally, it teaches the dog that there are no boundaries. Dogs, like children, need to know their boundaries.”

12. Bringing Aggressive Dogs Around Other People or Pets

Dog With Muzzle
Source: Pixabay

If you know for a fact that your dog tends to be aggressive towards others, especially children and other dogs, it’s not only rude to bring your dog to public places, it’s also dangerous, veterinarian and author Ruth MacPete told Reader’s Digest. Now, we know that’s not fair to you to not be able to take your dog to public places. But, if it’s that important to you, you might want to consider getting your dog neutered. According to The Daily Telegraph, testosterone makes male dogs more likely to engage in conflict with other dogs. Getting them neutered, then, is likely to decrease their aggression. Beware, though: If your dog has fear-based aggression, neutering him could just make matters worse. So, before you take your dog to get snipped, talk it over with your vet to see the appropriate steps you need to take for your dog’s particular situation.

11. Putting Their Dog Outside When They Won’t Stop Barking

Dog Barking
Source: Pixabay

If you’re a dog owner you’ve probably done this at least once in your life. But, it’s rude and disrespectful to your neighbors. If you don’t want to hear your dog constantly yapping, what makes you think others want to hear it? If your dog is constantly barking, there could be a problem that might require a visit to the vet. It could also be that you’re causing your dog’s annoying behavior. If you’re guilty of doing whatever it takes to get your dog to stop barking, he or she is going to continue that annoying behavior because they’re just doing what works. “Dogs are experimenters. The feedback for what they do leads to their future behaviors,” Tyler Ohlmann, dog trainer in Louisville, Kentucky, told BETTER. “They just do and see what happens. Babies do the same thing. If what they do results in something favorable they’ll do it again. And if it results in something unfavorable, they’re less likely to do it again.”

10. Ignoring What Their Dog is Doing or Saying

Ignoring Dog Behavior
Source: Pixabay

According to Askeland, we need to listen when our dogs are trying to tell us something. Barking, whimpering, snarling and lunging are all ways our dogs communicate with us to let us know they want something or are feeling a certain way, perhaps a feeling of discomfort with a specific situation. Unfortunately, “dismissing this behavior could put someone else or another dog at risk of injury,” she told Reader’s Digest.

Thought Catalog writer Sabrina Fleary refers to this type of person as “the oblivious dog owner.” In her opinion, “these are probably the worst dog owners. They completely disregard/ignore their dog’s unacceptable behavior.”

9. Ignoring “No Pets Allowed” Signs

No Pets Allowed
Source: Wikimedia Commons By Aniket [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)]
We get it. You love your pooch, and you want to be able to take him or her everywhere you go. Unfortunately, you can’t do that. There are rules and regulations certain establishments must abide by — and that means you must also abide by those rules. For instance, there are some public places, like stores and restaurants, where dogs are not allowed. Yet, people still bring them in anyway. It’s not only rude to the establishment owner (you could get them shut down after all), it’s also rude to fellow customers who might be allergic to or afraid of dogs.

8. Calling Their Dog a Service Animal When It’s Not

Service Dog
Source: Pixabay

Some of those people ignoring those “no pets allowed” signs have probably used this excuse a time or two in their lives to get their dog into places where animals are not allowed. Unfortunately, this behavior is not just rude, it can actually be quite dangerous. That’s because service dogs are specially trained, tested, and certified. They know how to conduct themselves in public spaces, unlike your pet. Another issue is that when you break the rules, you make it harder for people who really do have service dogs.

7. Telling People Their Dog is Friendly

Friendly Dog
Source: Pixabay

Just because your dog is friendly to you doesn’t mean your dog is going to be friendly with everyone (or every animal) he or she encounters. There are reasons for this. Perhaps the person or dog they encounter is rude to them. Or, maybe that person or animal may do something to make your dog feel threatened. They’re not going to be friendly to them in return, right? Or, maybe your dog could be in a not-so-friendly mood. After all, they have emotions just like we do. If your dog’s having a bad day, he or she is not going to be on their best behavior and will definitely not be friendly.

6. Letting Their Dog Jump Up on Other People

Dog Jumping On Person
Source: Pixabay

When your dog is in a playful mood, it doesn’t mean you should let him or her jump up on other people. And, yes, this is one way they show their affection, but this type of behavior could be problematic. For one, your dog could knock someone down and cause an injury. This is especially true when it comes to kids and seniors. Not only that, but some people don’t like dogs and may not want them to jump on them. Also, there are some people with dog allergies, and the last thing they’d want is a big, hairy dog jumping on them.

5. Forcing Their Dog to be Petted

People Petting Dog
Source: Pixabay

Didn’t you absolutely hate it when you were a kid and your parents forced you to let your Aunt Bertha give you those gross kisses every time she came for a visit? Imagine how your dog feels every time a stranger comes up wanting to pet him or her and your dog isn’t open to meeting new people in that way. According to Askeland, this sort of forceful social interaction can cause your dog to be more fearful of strangers and even other animals over time.

4. Letting Their Dog Off the Leash in Public

Dog No Leash
Source: Pixabay

Unless you’re at a dog park, your dog really needs to be on a leash in public spaces. This is even true if your dog follows voice commands, because if something happens to upset them or make them uncomfortable somehow, they’re not going to listen to your commands. Like people, dogs can snap at any moment. They can also be startled and run away. Not only that, but letting your dogs run loose in on-leash areas can be quite problematic — even if your dog is friendly. Think about it? How many park picnics have been ruined by dogs who were allowed to run loose? How many cyclists and pedestrians have been knocked to the ground, or worse, by an overly-friendly or overly-aggressive dog that was allowed to run free? Do yourself and your fellow man a favor and keep your dog on the leash in areas where it’s required.

3. Dropping Their Dog’s Leash

Dog Leash On Ground
Source: Pixabay

Just because you need to keep your dog on a leash doesn’t mean it’s okay to drop that leash. It’s pretty much the same thing as removing the leash because they’re still allowed to run loose. Some people feel it’s okay to do this when their dog is making a new friend, so to speak. But, “dogs are just like us in that they enjoy their personal space and want to warm up to meeting a new friend,” Halle Rieckmann, dog behavior expert and owner of Heel House K9 Training, told Reader’s Digest.

2. Talking on Your Cell Phone at the Dog Park

Talking On Cell Phone
Source: Pixabay

You can’t go anywhere nowadays without seeing something talking on their cell phone. But, just like you wouldn’t pull out your phone and start talking on it in the middle of a staff meeting at work or in the middle of church service (at least we hope you wouldn’t anyway), you really shouldn’t be doing it at the dog park either. “When you take your puppy to the dog park, yes he’s there to play with his friends, but just like a child, it’s important to keep tabs on him and watch his behavior,” Rieckmann told Reader’s Digest. “If he gets upset or starts picking on another dog, you’ll need your hands free and all of your attention to help him out.”

1. Treating Their Dog Like a Human

Dog In Stroller
Source: Wikimedia Commons By Rhododendrites [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)]
Dogs are remarkable creatures — but there are differences between them and humans. And, when a dog owner uses statements like, “Oh, she didn’t mean to bite you,” or “He understands everything that I say to him,” it can be quite frustrating for others. Unfortunately, trying to correct bad behavior by treating your dog as if he’s human will not correct that behavior. Oftentimes it will just make it worse. The best thing to do is to seek professional advice from either a vet or dog trainer. They can help find the right solution to your dog’s behavioral issues.


Your turn! What rude things have you noticed dog owners doing? Sound off in the comments section below. Thanks for reading!