Years ago I held my breath each time a not-so-dog-savvy friend ignored my advice and walked her Yorkshire Terrier through dog shows or training grounds, obliviously passing larger breeds known for strong prey drive. Watching some dogs eye the animated little dog that looked a bit too much like a furry prey mammal, I feared the worst.
Though my friend dearly loved her Yorkie, she took her training instructor’s words too earnestly when told that carrying her dog could cause him to become reactive and even aggressive toward approaching strangers due to feeling trapped. Though correct, the instructor didn’t elaborate that safety sometimes overrides the “no carry” rule.
The smart owner avoids either extreme. No one should constantly carry a small dog since walking on all fours increases a dog’s confidence and allows for more natural reactions to approaching people or dogs. On the other hand, safety dictates you carry your small companion when passing near a larger unknown dog.
Thankfully, my fears for this particular Yorkie proved unrealized and “Zues” lived a long, happy life without incident. Help your little dog do the same by balancing training and showing with preventive safety.