The Yellow Dog Project- A Safe Space for Everyone
Some dogs, just like some people, require a little extra room than others. The Yellow Dog Project (TYDP) aims to minimize the potentially awkward, embarrassing and sometimes dangerous situations that arise when man’s best friend is uncomfortable or less than well-behaved among strangers.
Founded in 2012 by Canadian positive reinforcement trainer, Tara Palardy, The Yellow Dog Project is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to foster the safety of DINOS (Dogs In Need Of Space) as well as people who come in contact with them, through the use of yellow ribbons or scarves.
For those not already in the know, a yellow ribbon or scarf tied around a dog’s collar or leash acts like a visual protective bubble for the dog, alerting passersby to the dog’s need for them to give the dog a wider berth.
In addition to looking out for the dog’s welfare, part of the Yellow Dog Project’s global mission is to educate dog owners about what a yellow dog is, so that they can identify whether or not their dog should be classified as one. The Yellow Dog Project has also been working hard to get the word out to non-dog owners, so that they too can respond accordingly when encountering a yellow dog out and about.
DO YOU HAVE A YELLOW DOG?
It’s important to note that yellow dog status does not automatically indicate an aggressive animal. A dog can be considered a yellow dog if it meets any of the following criteria:
recovering from an injury or surgery
a shelter or rescue dog that is recovering from stressful circumstances
undergoing obedience training
in service or working
training to be a service/working dog
fearful, timid or skittish
Other reasons that are specific/personal to that dog
If you are the owner of a yellow dog, keep in mind that the word is still getting out and not everyone knows what the ribbon or scarf means. Be patient, but know that you may have to explain it from time to time until it is common knowledge.
The Yellow Dog Project endorses asking permission of the owner before petting any dog, regardless of whether it is a yellow dog or not. Being designated a yellow dog does not excuse an owner from the responsibility and liability of the dog’s actions. Neither is it an excuse not to train a dog if it needs training.
The American Humane Association estimates 4.7 million dog bites occur in the U.S. each year. Children under the age of 12 are involved in 50% of all dog attacks. As children and dogs can be a particularly bad combination, parents and dog owners alike need to pay particular attention when both are present. Thanks to the Yellow Dog Project, the world is that much closer to harmony in a shared space.
Support the Yellow Dog Project today by following them on Facebook (over 89,000 followers and climbing) or volunteering via their website.