Services | Class Schedule | Staff

Methods | Locations | Videos | Blog

Partners | Contact

Contact us

Dogs Abroad

Author: Lindsay Rapp | Date: August 2, 2013

I have been traveling in Italy for the last month, and I found dogs to be very different there.

During my first day of walking around Rome, I was actually more in awe of the dog culture then the beauty of the city.

My boyfriend Andrew was probably sick of listening to me say “Oh my God, look at that dog!”

The first thing I noticed was their temperament. All of the dogs I saw in Italy were calm. I didn’t see any anxiety or any dog-to-dog reactivity when they passed each other on the street. They really didn’t care about anyone else other then their owners. Many dogs would willingly sit outside of a store waiting for their human to run an errand.  I tried to say hi to them, to see what their reaction would be, and they didn’t even look at me or wiggle their body due to excitement. They simply didn’t care!

The second thing I noticed was how many dogs were off leash. All of the owners had the leash in their hand, but the dogs would just follow them. No human prompting was needed to keep them near; it was as if they were on a leash. They all stopped and sat or laid down if their human were to start up a conversation with a friend. The humans were not stressed whatsoever! It didn’t even occur to them that their dog might run away.

As far as barking, I heard NO barking from pet dogs. The only dogs I heard bark were guard dogs. That was their job, and they were good at it.

The last thing that I noticed were the different breeds. The most prominent dog breeds were beagles, long-haired dachshunds and Cavalier King Charles. But many of the dogs were mutts, and all very cute.

So, why are the dogs in Italy so different than the dogs here in the States? I don’t have all the answers, and I am going to do some more research, but here is my guess. They don’t have dog parks or doggy daycares. The demand for dogs is not as large; therefore they are not over breeding. Another thing is life is just calmer over there. Calm humans, calm cities and calm dogs.

Why do you think foreign dogs are so different?



    1. Patty says:

      My cousin in France had a cute mutt that went with us everywhere while we traveled around. Boo Boo went with us to the beaches of Normandy, Mont St. Michel, all around La Havre and into all the restaurants where we ate. He’s sit under the table and waited for us to finish. He was off leash a lot and seemed to enjoy hanging out with his peeps.

    2. Andrea Miller says:


    3. andreamiller says:

      From Lindsay Rapp: Hi Patty! That is exactly what I am talking about! It is so nice that other people notice that too. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your experience here.

    4. Tiffany says:

      I had the same experience in Italy and Austria both in the city and country. The dogs were much, much calmer and behaved. It amazed me. In Austria, all dog owners are required by law to take a dog training class. The company/organization who does the training must be approved by the government. I give this a big thumbs-up. I did see a few dogs leash pulling and one idiotic owner who let his dog jump all over a stranger’s dogs, but it paled in comparison to what I’ve seen in the U.S. The dogs are also allowed in many public places and on public transportation. I’ve seen dogs surrounded by people on the subway and on a gondola, very laid-back and chill. Also saw a group of hunting dogs in a restaurant who just laid under the table while all the hunters ate – with the exception of one weimaraner who begged to eat their food. Most people get their dogs from breeders. In Austria, there are very few rescue organizations/shelters because they are not needed. They do not have over-population of pets. Of course, there are some rare cases where dogs are put to sleep for behavioral issues and biting.

    5. andreamiller says:

      From Lindsay Rapp:

      Hi Tiffany!

      I did not know that the
      governments got involved. Wow! I wish they had some input here in the
      states, and if dog training was mandatory, I think we would have
      different dogs on our hands. That is why here at AnimalSense we want
      everyone to start training with their dog as soon as they come into the home. Setting
      groundwork for good behavior right off the bat and creating consistency
      is key for having a well behaved dog.

      Thank you for bringing up some great points!

A great experience.

Brian K. | View Client Testimonials


© 2018 Paradise 4 Paws AS, LLC. All Rights Reserved.