Advocating for your dog can come in many different varieties. On the walk seems to be your biggest challenge. This is a key component into your dog believing and trusting in you that you will be able to protect him/ her. There are a couple things that we use that may be able to help you out.
When you are on a walk try carrying a walking stick, a long umbrella or a cane with you. This will help to be able to create distance between you and a dog that may run up on you. By creating space you are able to re-position your dog behind you. When your dog sees that you can control the other dog by keeping the dog out of his personal bubble, you automatically gain more trust from your dog.
One of the biggest struggles that we see, is telling other people they or their dog may not approach them. People have a hard time understanding that all dog’s aren’t friendly or that all dog’s shouldn’t be approached. You will get some negative feedback and some funny looks for it, but this will help solidify the trust between you and your dog. If someone still feels that they need to approach you, shorten your leash and slide your dog behind you you. This will help you to act as a shield for them.
It’s important to be able to protect your dog out in an environment that may feel like a battlefield for them. Doing this will change their life and yours!