Usually I worry that my sweet, fluffy girl doesn’t scare people enough.
People put their hands in her face as Honey walks by. They snuggle up and try to kiss her. And they do all kinds of things I know they’d never try if she looked more like a Doberman or German Shepherd.
So if people take advantage of my dog’s friendly looks and breed’s reputation, why does my dog scare people?
Scary Dog At Play
Honey loves to play. And it’s when she’s playing that my dog scares people.
One of her favorite games is bitey face.
If you don’t know the term, it’s when dogs wrestle with their mouths open and teeth flashing. It freaks people out who aren’t used to seeing dogs play that way. But it’s perfectly harmless.
In fact, it’s like the dog version of thumb wrestling. Dogs don’t have opposable thumbs so they just use their teeth.
But Honey has another favorite game that frightens people even more.
Noisy Dog On The End Of A Toy
Honey loves to play tug.
I’m not as good a playmate as my husband. So I can’t really get her going.
But when she and Mike go at it, things get serious.
Honey gets so excited tugging on a rope or toy that she growls low in her throat.
You should see the look of shock and horror when people first hear that menacing sound from my little blonde pup.
I admit it. The first time I heard that low growl I was surprised too.
But soon I realized it was like the dog version of sex noises. They come out in the heat of the moment.
When Dogs Scare People
I’ve learned to love when Honey is scary.
She’s great at holding back when playing with a puppy or smaller dog. But she goes all out with a dog who’s big enough to handle her scary exuberance.
Her teeth flash like she’s channeling an ancient wolf ancestor fighting for survival.
And that growl… That wonderful growl.
It reminds me that Honey is more than just a pampered dog who never has to wonder where her next meal is coming from.
A small part of her is still that ancient wild dog who knew how to care for herself. But joined a human pack by choice.
And I’m very glad she joined mine.
Your Turn: Do your dogs have any traits that scare other people but are perfectly harmless?