Do you feel comfortable letting your dog say "hello" to another leashed dog that you pass on a walk? Have you ever had a bad experience?
I used to allow it regularly, but I've had a number of bad experiences and now avoid it. For a reason I don't fully understand, dogs are more protective when they're on leash.
I was in Petco over the winter and a woman with a medium-size dog marched up quickly to say hello to me and Eddie. The dog looked friendly, and Eddie seemed to be behaving himself. But the other dog suddenly snapped at Eddie. At least I wasn't caught off-guard. I was able to quickly pull him away before he could get hurt or retaliate.
Another time, and I can't remember where, it was Eddie who snapped. I remember warning the person to take it slow because I wasn't sure how they'd react. I found out: poorly.
A couple times this spring, loose dogs have charged up to mine while mine were leashed. One time in particular they didn't seem aggressive, and we were in an isolated area, so I dropped Lucy and Eddie's leashes and scooped up Jillie. She tends to run and incite the other dogs. That actually worked out well. Without me holding their leash, they said hello on their own terms. It's not something I enjoy doing, but it worked.
What's your experience? Am I just a 'fraidy cat with fear-aggressive dogs, or is there something to it?