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What is a DINOS?

I’ve created an entire website dedicated to DINOS with tons of resources and help: check it out here!

DINOS™ are Dogs in Need of Space.

The term DINOS is intended to help the public understand that ALL dogs have a need for and a right to their personal space. Some dogs may have a stronger need for need space than others, like the ones I’ve listed below.

DINOS are good dogs that need some space while they’re out on walks.
They might be DINOS for a variety of reasons, such as:

: Service and Working Dogs

Medical: illness, injury, surgery, or rehab

Training: learning polite leash manners

Age: issues such as arthritis, vestibular disease, or blindness

Behavioral: fear, anxiety, reactivity, intolerance of other animals

DINOS are GOOD dogs, they just need space!

At one time or another, every dog will need space. DINOS is a term that serves as a reminder that not all dogs are comfortable or able to interact with unfamiliar dogs or people. That’s perfectly normal. DINOS encourages all dog owners to be responsible and respectful towards others. Never assume it’s ok to approach an unfamiliar dog without asking permission first. It’s our right as dog owners to say “no” if we feel an interaction is not in the best interests of our dogs. Please be respectful of our right to decline. It’s nothing personal – it’s just about space!

DINOS was created when I wrote this blog post that went viral: My Dog is Friendly PSA!  

DINOS from Photo Lab

The best way to approach any unfamiliar dog is by following these easy steps:

  1. Obey Leash Laws and Have Your Dog Under Control  (even if your dog is friendly!)
  2. Always Ask Permission Before Approaching an Unfamiliar Dog
  3. Wait for a Response
  4. Allow Dogs Enough Space to Pass

By having your dogs under control and asking permission first, you’ll be responsible, respectful, and safe!

Together we can create safe, compassionate communities for people and their pets to enjoy. Responsible dog owners do not leave dogs unattended, allow them to roam loose (unless the are at a designated off leash area), and they abide by leash laws in order to properly manage their dogs while out in public. Responsible dog ownership allows everyone, including children and senior citizens, to have safe, equal access to public spaces.

Meet Murphy the Service Dog and find out why he needs you to obey leash laws.

Watch the DINOS Movie and share with your friends!


please note:

DINOS™  was created by Jessica Dolce and is not available for commercial use. Reprint guidelines are here.

Visit the DINOS Website for more!

34 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hello! I just found this wonderful site. I have a DINOS dog and people need to understand the needs of our special friends. Please help me spread the word so that other dog owners can be educated on DINOS dogs like mine and yours. I added to my Pinterest and shared on Facebook and encouraged folks to do the same… as I am encouraging all of you.
    THANK YOU from Barb in North Carolina.
    July 22, 2012

    July 22, 2012
  2. Jenn #

    Would love to get one of those Dogs in Training.. Give me space shirts!!! That is perfect!

    July 29, 2012
  3. Hi there, great site, I have just shared on facebook and Google+

    November 17, 2012
  4. Stacie #

    Having had a serious dog aggressive dog for 15 years we could write books on our DINO life ..then add in rescue dogs and bully breeds…
    leash my #1 recommended and most ignored tool !
    Love your articles and sharing your ” Its how they were raised”

    November 21, 2012
  5. Hi there! Thank you sooooo much for creating this. I would love to link your page on my website, we are a dog walking and training company and have so many clients that go through this! Helps to know they are not alone!

    January 18, 2013
    • Thanks Kelley! Please feel free to link/share with your clients. I hope it helps them to know they’re a part of Team DINOS!

      January 21, 2013
  6. My dogs are both DINOS, for different reasons. Thanks for creating this video! I’d love to use it on my blog and FB page, The Lazy Pit Bull! Let me know if that’s okay! 🙂

    February 13, 2013
    • Thanks Christina! I’d love it if you shared the video (me and my super lazy pit bull would be honored)!

      February 13, 2013
  7. Excellent information. The same things I teach my classes. Thank you for putting this into writting. I have linked to you on my webpage.

    May 12, 2013
  8. Vanessa #

    I haven’t scrolled through the whole blog but in the ones I’ve read I haven’t seen my identifier MDII (my dog is indifferent). I got a good dog and I’m not claiming that I trained a good dog I just got lucky when i rolled the dice. I am also indifferent. I’ll approach dogs at petsmart (those adorable pups that you want to sniff and snuggle but definitely don’t want in your home). I foster dogs, I own two dogs, I’m saturated with dogs and don’t need to interact with yours lol. What I don’t appreciate is when I have a dog on leash (and yes my dog is on a flexi lead because he won’t poop within 6 feet of me.) a whining 3 year old child who is tired of walking on hand and yet a DINOS owner wants me to go out of MY way to accommodate their dog. Cross the street yeah I can handle that. Pause while you walk sure no biggie. But the lady in my neighborhood would under threat of loosing her dog expect me to walk a quarter mile in the opposite direction of my destination when our paths crossed so I could take a side road and she could get home. I couldn’t imagine the stress of owning a DINOS especially one that was so dog reactive but I don’t feel that the owner of a DINOS right to walk and enjoy time with their dog eclipses my own. Am I way off?

    June 5, 2013
    • No I don’t think you’re way off at all! DINOS is really about ALL of us having some common sense about dogs, focusing on responsible dog ownership, and being respectful of one another. You sound like you have all those bases covered!

      We’re not asking anyone to make huge accommodations (like this neighbor of yours). We just want everyone to have full control over their dogs and to understand that our dogs have a right to take a walk without interacting with other dogs or people. So the fact that you’ll pause for a moment or will make some space for another dog really makes you a super star.

      June 5, 2013

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Clueless « The Pongo Experience
  2. DINOS: Tips from a dog walker on canine and handler etiquette
  3. Pup links! « Doggerel
  4. Please do not treat my vet's waiting room like a dog park | TheDogs: A blog for pet lovers
  5. We Walk DINOS! « 3 Bad Bullies
  6. Collective Wisdom … or, “These are a few of my fav-or-ite blogs!” « DVGRR's Golden Nose Nudge
  7. Do You Have a Yellow Dog? « Wayward Dogs
  8. King of the DINOS « peternal instinct
  9. King of the DINOS : Jessica Reid
  10. Be Polite. It Could Save an Epileptic Dog’s Life. « Dogs in Need of Space
  11. Stop Caring What Others Think and Stand Up for Your Dogs | notes from a dog walker
  12. Stop Caring What Others Think and Stand Up for Your Dogs « Dogs in Need of Space
  13. 10 Signs The Other Person’s Just Not That Into You (or Your Dog) | notes from a dog walker
  14. You Know You’re Living with DINOS™ When… | notes from a dog walker
  15. Mom Was Right: It’s Not What You Say, It’s How You Say It | notes from a dog walker
  16. Peace in the Yard: 7 Ways To Dog Proof Your Fence | notes from a dog walker
  17. Have Dogs, Will Travel: Vacation Rental Edition | notes from a dog walker
  18. Your Picks for DINOS-Friendly Veterinarians | notes from a dog walker
  19. 7 Wishes For Families With Dogs In Need Of Space | notes from a dog walker
  20. Use It or Lose It | notes from a dog walker
  21. Look Ma, No Hands! [contest] | notes from a dog walker
  22. Beyond Daily Dog Walks: Uba’s Story | notes from a dog walker

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