Romania has a long history of free-roaming dogs. And of dire failure to control their populations. The problem of both community dogs and stray dogs dates back to the 19th century and their extermination has always been received with resistance and left scars in the collective conscience.
“Stray dogs have been an issue for Romania forever, and in the 19th century there was talk for the first time of eliminating them. Until then, the problem was partly due to the fact that households did not have clear limits, such as fences, and so household dogs became everybody’s dogs. Bucharest and Iasi back then did not have clearly delimited households, like now, and that was true of Europe in general. The first document I found dates back to 1810, when the Russians, who occupied the Romanian Principalities after the 1806-1812 war with the Turks, saw the dogs all over the streets and hired people to round them up and kill them. Then they issued announcements to tell people to keep their own dogs chained in their courtyards, lest they be hunted down. After the Russians left in 1812, the measure fell. However, when cities started being reorganized by the French model in 1850, it came back. In the countryside, however, dogs are everywhere people are.
The consuls of Great Britain and France, present in Bucharest and Iasi until 1859, talk about being unable to walk the streets at night because of the dogs that were everywhere. There is an 1850 testimonial talking about the dogs on the Dambovita. Why there? Because it was the place where there were a lot of slaughterhouses and tanneries. These small businesses threw every piece of refuse in the river, and a lot of dogs ate what they threw away. Taking a walk there was bordering on suicide. In 1852, cities started issuing ordinances against stray dogs. The first shelter was built because the sight of killing them was gruesome. The first humanitarian arguments also emerged against the public killing of dogs.
You can find in an old newspaper testimonies about rabid dogs, who attack anyone they meet, in cities or villages. You can see how serious the problem was from the many recipes against rabies. The problem was compounded by wolves. In the countryside, especially in the mountains, wolves were a constant presence, especially in winter, in addition to rabid dogs. Dogs are especially aggressive during epidemics, when food is scarce. The spectacle is atrocious, because in times when the plague hit, people were buried even before they were dead. People were so scared that they wanted to get rid of the sick people even before they died of the disease. As I said, the spectacle was horrible: dogs were pulling out corpses out of the ground and dragged them all over the streets.”
In all subsequent historical periods, Romania failed to deal with the problem of stray dogs. During communism, the population of stray dogs exploded as the authorities razed whole neighborhoods to erect blocks of flats, and this issue continues.
Dogs are one of the most common domestic animals in Romania. They are divided into two wide categories: dogs that depend on humans and dogs that do not depend on humans.
The terms street dog, stray, un-owned, feral, neighborhood and village dog are frequently used without definition leading to considerable confusion. Basically, "stray dog" means any dog not under direct control by a person or not prevented from roaming. According to OIE Guidelines on Stray Dog Population Control, there exist three types of stray dog:
a) free-roaming owned dog not under direct control or restriction at a particular time; b) free-roaming dog with no owner; c) feral dog: domestic dog that has reverted to the wild state and is no longer directly dependent upon humans for successful reproduction.
The term "stray" is becoming less popular among scientists studying free-ranging dogs because it doesn’t differentiate among their three groups. The distinction between owned and neighborhood dogs is often blurred, and dogs can go from owned to un-owned to owned again (depending on the definition of “ownership”) while living on the streets.
Neighborhood and owned dogs often scavenge for food and accept handouts from willing people. Neighborhood dogs can become feral, although the reverse is rarely seen.
Dogs that have an owner are divided into pets, yard dogs or guard dogs in traditional households, and working dogs. The latter category includes dogs trained for guard and protection, hunting dogs, dogs with various functional roles in state entities (army, police, customs, civil defense), and therapy dogs.
Dogs somewhat independent from humans (but not from resources derived from human activities) are those born in the street, meaning dogs without a referral household (homeless dogs) which find their own water and food, particularly from garbage and waste. They do not survive very long and have extremely vulnerable puppies.
Ownerless dogs that are partially adopted by the community or individuals (for example, restaurant dogs, site dogs, etc.) are a subdivision of this category. These are fed more or less regularly, most of the time receive no medical care, and no one takes responsible ownership of them (vaccination, neutering, providing shelter, etc.). They are commonly socialized to some degree and they have contact with human beings who provide the food and shelter needed for survival.
There are also dogs that are completely independent from humans, namely feral dogs; these are first-, second- or third-generation dogs that have become wild and live on forest edges or in the fields, far from human settlements. They feed themselves by hunting and do not eat garbage or waste.
The behavior of neighborhood and owned dogs often differs substantially from dogs born on the streets. The latter attempt to avoid human contact and are usually fearful of people, even though they live in garbage dump areas and on the periphery of human habitations. These dogs also form groups of 2-6 individuals that are mostly unrelated to each other but stable in membership. These groups will actively defend territories against other dogs.
Neighborhood dogs are often seen singly or in pairs, as they tend to live off of more dispersed food sources such as garbage from homes and businesses. They don’t form stable groups but assemble in groups when a female is in heat or when they find a rich food source or safe resting area. Neighborhood dogs vary in their friendliness to people, some being quite social while others are wary. These differences between groups have been seen in different areas and cultures around the world.  
The social behavior of dogs
History, environment, and the experiences lived, will forge your character and influence your behavior. This is true for humans, and it is true for animals, too, including dogs. Canine behaviour is as varied as the human one.
Dogs who have strayed from their home are in unfamiliar and scary surroundings. The strange sounds and sights may encourage them to be defensive and fearful. The fear may manifest as aggression, even when approached by a well-meaning stranger. When a dog is sufficiently fearful, he may turn aggressive. The threshold for fear turning into aggression varies according to the personality of the dog. Dogs who have escaped from their homes may quickly turn aggressive due to the shock of being in unfamiliar, scary surroundings. Dogs who are naturally wary of strangers are likely to be even more wary when in unfamiliar surroundings. They typically avoid strangers, running away when approached and will only overcome their fear when hunger gets the better of them. A friendly dog may see being out and about by himself as a great adventure, completely unaware of the dangers. Such dogs will happily approach strangers, other dogs and will not run away if approached. These dogs are at an advantage, as it is more likely that they can be caught and returned to their families. Even dogs who have spent their whole lives as strays can learn to be friendly, especially if they are in an established routine, like the stray dogs who live on the Moscow subway network.
Dogs who were born on the streets are used to their surroundings and may be less prone to fear. In some cases, they are quite used to the presence of crowds and will happily interact and mingle. Streetwise strays may exhibit aggression toward other dogs, whom they view as competitors for food and territory, but will simply avoid humans.
Dogs who have to find their own food will have sharper hunting instincts than those who are used to being fed as part of a domestic routine. Therefore dogs born as strays will kill their food, and in some cases may actually provide a valuable service to the people they live near by keeping vermin populations down by hunting rats and mice.