Last night a dog taught me a lesson: Do not pre-judge dogs (or people) based on their breed or on previous conceptions...
Years ago when I took my great dane (a pup then) to training lessons there were 3 Neapolitan Mastiffs (popular breed here in Mexico) that were the most scary aggressive dogs I had met (they would act very calm and without giving any sign attack other dogs or people). So of course in my internal list of things to be afraid of I include Neapolitan Mastiffs, Akitas and the such...
Well, yesterday I was saying goodbye to a friend that came over my house when a neighbors Neapolitan Mastiff appeared right in front of me (I have seen the dog many times, loose out in the park unsupervised). Turns out this big guy approached me like a friendly lab or golden retriever wagging his big tail and rubbing his head against me like a cat. Of course he loved the massage I gave him and then he wouldn´t want to leave me... he actually entered into my house to try to find Misha and Homer (they were on my backyard).
Lesson learned: Do not judge a book by it´s cover. This huge gray dog turned out to be probably the gentlest giant I have met.
Definitely a good lesson.
Having a Rottie mix, I am less inclined to have those sorts of preconceptions. That being said, I have met incredibly sweet Pit Bulls and scary aggressive Golden Retrievers.