I was really hopeful about the play date I set up for Turbo on Saturday. I'd previously seen Turbo act interested in meeting other dogs.. and he just seemed playful. I thought he'd do fine.
But I guess he was a little intimidated by the other dog. She was a 1 year old German Shepard, and easily twice the size of Turbo. She was very energetic and playful too. Maybe it was her size that intimidated Turbo, or maybe it was her energy. I hoped the two would get along and play.. but that did not happen.
They first met through the fence, and at first it seemed like friendly barking.. but this soon turned into angry barking.
Both dogs were kept on leash, and the German Shepard came inside the fence, hoping they'd warm up to each other, but they didn't. When close, they would bark angrily and snap at each other. They'd calm down after a few minutes, so we tried again, but it was the same thing.. angry barking.
So, it didn't work out.
I do believe it is mostly due to Turbo's lack of socialization. The good news is he did calm down after a few minutes and he just sat down panting. He didn't continue to bark at the other dog even though the other dog wasn't backing off. The dogs were just a few feet away, but not being pressured to get close. He was fine with it all, until we tried to bring him close again. So I really don't think it's an aggressive problem.. I think he was simply overwhelmed or intimidated by her.
I'm going to keep trying. Perhaps not in that same way though.
Today I took him back to the canal for a walk where I knew there would be other dogs walking. He did great. When another dog passed by he seemed interested and would look at them and pause or try to go towards them to sniff. I kept him at my side.. the owners of the other dogs were not interested in stopping to meet us.. and that was fine. It's enough for now that they just walk past. I think we'll keep this up regularly.. and maybe down the road try another play date with a dog more Turbo's size.