Not everyone wants to play.
There’s a forested park fairly close by where I like to take 16 year-old Samantha when she stays with us. She’s free to roam around without a leash through uncut grass, fields of wildflowers and trails. She seems to enjoy it overall, except when other dogs notice her and jaunt over to see if she’ll play with them. Sam isn’t a very sociable dog when it comes to being with other dogs–or people for that matter (unless you’ve got food; food is her Achilles’ heel), so she doesn’t react with glee at their bum-sniffing, drooling, and poking. When we were there a few days ago, a 6 month old shepherd pup named Sheba wanted Sam to play with her. Sheba got so aggressive in pursuing Sam to participate that Sam finally snapped. She snipped and barked, and when I reached down to calm her, she snapped at me. I sometimes wonder if she holds it against me when I take her someplace where she ends up going through something uncomfortable (to see fireworks, for example. She hated that), but no. Sam doesn’t hold grudges. I love that little dog.