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Thread: Mean dog

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    #11
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    Be honest with her and ask that she keep the dog separate while your family is there. If she doesn't want to do that, which is her right, don't stay there. There is no reason to lie to her about it. Also, you mentioned that he's aggressive and has bloodied his nose trying to get to puppies... has he attacked other dogs? If not, he might just be interested in the puppies. They're a new territory and interesting to older dogs.
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    #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Carolina View Post
    Be honest with her and ask that she keep the dog separate while your family is there. If she doesn't want to do that, which is her right, don't stay there. There is no reason to lie to her about it. Also, you mentioned that he's aggressive and has bloodied his nose trying to get to puppies... has he attacked other dogs? If not, he might just be interested in the puppies. They're a new territory and interesting to older dogs.
    It has been more than just puppies, it's pretty much every dog except for her other dog amd their friend's chocolate lab, who they switch dog sitting with. She took them over for her to watch when she left for spring break and he attacked another dog she was watching.

    I need to push back on it, and I feel really bad about it, but I can't have him bite a kid, who often empty the dog toys at their house. I keep wondering what would happen if my two year old got a hold of his favorite toy or something and he bit her. I have brought it up a couple of times and she has shut it down "he is fine with kids." I don't want to fight with her, but he is fine with kids *until he isn't*. He used to be good with dogs.
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Medic2Doula View Post
    It has been more than just puppies, it's pretty much every dog except for her other dog amd their friend's chocolate lab, who they switch dog sitting with. She took them over for her to watch when she left for spring break and he attacked another dog she was watching.

    I need to push back on it, and I feel really bad about it, but I can't have him bite a kid, who often empty the dog toys at their house. I keep wondering what would happen if my two year old got a hold of his favorite toy or something and he bit her. I have brought it up a couple of times and she has shut it down "he is fine with kids." I don't want to fight with her, but he is fine with kids *until he isn't*. He used to be good with dogs.
    I second (third?) the hotel idea from earlier, and putting your foot down to keep separation between him & the kids. It's better to keep the kids and the dog safe by separating them than by allowing the risk of a bite, no matter how serious that bite may be. Doesn't matter that he's currently, at that moment, fine with kids - even well behaved, 99% of the time safe dogs have their moments, and a dog that's already shown aggression (especially that's atypical for the dog previously) just isn't something to risk.

    In my state, any dog bite is required to be reported. If a bite occurs and the individual needs to see a doctor, the doctor is required to report it. Once the report is in, the health dept (or animal control, depending on the county) may step in and remove the animal if it's necessary. Not often, but it does happen. Does your sister at least keep the dog(s) updated on their vaccines? In my county it's more likely for us to step in if the animal (or any other animal in the house) is unvaccinated or not UTD. It can get messy (legally) quickly if we have to step in and require quarantine or rabies testing.

    It is a really crappy situation to be in to have to push the issue, but I personally would be pushing that issue, hard. I see too many dog bite cases where the animal has shown previous aggression issues, and then someone gets hurt.
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by sassyspoonicus View Post
    I second (third?) the hotel idea from earlier, and putting your foot down to keep separation between him & the kids. It's better to keep the kids and the dog safe by separating them than by allowing the risk of a bite, no matter how serious that bite may be. Doesn't matter that he's currently, at that moment, fine with kids - even well behaved, 99% of the time safe dogs have their moments, and a dog that's already shown aggression (especially that's atypical for the dog previously) just isn't something to risk.

    In my state, any dog bite is required to be reported. If a bite occurs and the individual needs to see a doctor, the doctor is required to report it. Once the report is in, the health dept (or animal control, depending on the county) may step in and remove the animal if it's necessary. Not often, but it does happen. Does your sister at least keep the dog(s) updated on their vaccines? In my county it's more likely for us to step in if the animal (or any other animal in the house) is unvaccinated or not UTD. It can get messy (legally) quickly if we have to step in and require quarantine or rabies testing.

    It is a really crappy situation to be in to have to push the issue, but I personally would be pushing that issue, hard. I see too many dog bite cases where the animal has shown previous aggression issues, and then someone gets hurt.
    He is UTD on shots, I also think our laws are similar to those. I know whenever we had a dog bite at the hospital public safety came to take a report.
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    #15
    These things are always awkward. Perhaps it would be slightly less so if you make it about you and your kids, not her dog. "Timmy and Susie aren't used to being around dogs [assuming you don't have a dog, or perhaps "around big dogs" is you have a smaller dog] and even though we are working on it, they really haven't yet mastered proper human behavior around dogs. Since I can't keep an eye on them every second while we are visiting, I'm afraid they could pull a tail or play too roughly or take his toy or threaten his food while he's eating, and someone could end up hurt. Is there any chance you'd be willing to keep Spike separated from the kids, like in a separate room or blocked off by a baby gate, so that we can all enjoy the visit and I don't have to worry about keeping a constant watch and making sure Susie and Timmy are being gentle and respectful of Spike? I know it's a lot to ask, and if it is too much we can certainly stay in a hotel for our visit."
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    #16
    Quote Originally Posted by villanelle View Post
    These things are always awkward. Perhaps it would be slightly less so if you make it about you and your kids, not her dog. "Timmy and Susie aren't used to being around dogs [assuming you don't have a dog, or perhaps "around big dogs" is you have a smaller dog] and even though we are working on it, they really haven't yet mastered proper human behavior around dogs. Since I can't keep an eye on them every second while we are visiting, I'm afraid they could pull a tail or play too roughly or take his toy or threaten his food while he's eating, and someone could end up hurt. Is there any chance you'd be willing to keep Spike separated from the kids, like in a separate room or blocked off by a baby gate, so that we can all enjoy the visit and I don't have to worry about keeping a constant watch and making sure Susie and Timmy are being gentle and respectful of Spike? I know it's a lot to ask, and if it is too much we can certainly stay in a hotel for our visit."
    This is a great idea. We do have a big dog, but he is also very good to the kids, my two year old is still learning how to treat dogs and although we stop her if she is rough with him, he doesn't snap at her before we can get to her.
    She chased after a dog that belonged to a store owner the other day and it ended up running away and barking at her.

    I will say that I'm worried she will be too rough with him. Which is true, and I don't want her to antagonize her dogs.
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    #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Medic2Doula View Post
    This is a great idea. We do have a big dog, but he is also very good to the kids, my two year old is still learning how to treat dogs and although we stop her if she is rough with him, he doesn't snap at her before we can get to her.
    She chased after a dog that belonged to a store owner the other day and it ended up running away and barking at her.

    I will say that I'm worried she will be too rough with him. Which is true, and I don't want her to antagonize her dogs.
    I think what villanelle said was perfect. I don't see why that should be an issue.

    Honestly just because my dogs are perfect with my kids doesn't mean they will tolerate anything from anyone. If we have guests over I always ask if they are comfortable with larger dogs because I will move the dogs to a separate room if they are not (lots of people don't like big dogs) I know Ella will just kiss them and wants to be pet but if you don't like dogs a 70lb lap dog trying to kiss your face is going to make you pretty uncomfortable so why even put anyone in that situation??? I don't take it personally, I worked at a vet clinic, I know most dog bites don't happen because a dog is bad, they happen because a good dog was put in a bad situation and warning signs were not listened to so the only thing the dog had left was nipping to get of the situation.

    PLUS kids can be little bums to dogs...I love my kids and I love my dogs but I always worry that my dogs spoil my kids and one day they will get bit running up to a strangers dog. I try to drill into their heads dogs have big teeth and not all dogs are friendly but they don't REALLY get it. When my now 10 year old was about 4 I turned my back on him to grab milk out of the fridge when I turned back around he was standing on the kitchen chair and jumped as I yelled "noooo" he landed right on Ella's tail...nothing happened, she yelped, then kissed him. But holy crap, ANY other dog probably would have bit him

    My point is - I don't think it's rude or bad to ask. As a dog owner I have no problem keeping my dogs separated if someone feels uncomfortable.
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by villanelle View Post
    These things are always awkward. Perhaps it would be slightly less so if you make it about you and your kids, not her dog."
    This. Given the title of your post and some of your tone, your sister may be getting emotionally caught up in defending her dog rather than actively thinking about how to ensure everyone (dog, adults, and kids) has an enjoyable and safe time. Both you and your sister bear responsibility to keep everyone safe at this function. Her dog shouldn't be trusted with children without close supervision. Your children shouldn't be trusted with her dog without close supervision. Since she has already responded that her dog is great with kids, I'd suggest you try a different tactic. Make plans to keep your kids safe and to limit the amount of time that the dog needs to be separated. Get a hotel room, plan a pool event with cousins, maybe dinner the night before somewhere other than her house? Then try approaching her about what can be done to keep her dog safe when you will be at her house (evening jelly bean planting, morning lollipop finding, whatever meals etc). In her situation I'd personally give bonus points for suggesting things that take into account making sure the dog enjoys itself to. Something like you and your sister taking the dog for a walk and catching up by yourselves while the kids play with their cousins.
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    #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Kitinboots View Post
    This. Given the title of your post and some of your tone, your sister may be getting emotionally caught up in defending her dog rather than actively thinking about how to ensure everyone (dog, adults, and kids) has an enjoyable and safe time. Both you and your sister bear responsibility to keep everyone safe at this function. Her dog shouldn't be trusted with children without close supervision. Your children shouldn't be trusted with her dog without close supervision. Since she has already responded that her dog is great with kids, I'd suggest you try a different tactic. Make plans to keep your kids safe and to limit the amount of time that the dog needs to be separated. Get a hotel room, plan a pool event with cousins, maybe dinner the night before somewhere other than her house? Then try approaching her about what can be done to keep her dog safe when you will be at her house (evening jelly bean planting, morning lollipop finding, whatever meals etc). In her situation I'd personally give bonus points for suggesting things that take into account making sure the dog enjoys itself to. Something like you and your sister taking the dog for a walk and catching up by yourselves while the kids play with their cousins.
    Although I wish all these suggestions were possible, our kids are 6, 4, 2 and 8months, so going out to eat isn't enjoyable for anyone involved haha

    She has gotten to the point where she won't walk him, he doesn't go out but in their fenced backyard now. He is HUGE, him taking out another dog is a real concern, and he could easily kill one of my kids if he got the itch. I have treated dog bites at the hospital and I don't trust him *with* supervision. Lets say my kid so much as picks up a stick that he decides is HIS and he bolts for my kid? Is my reaction time going to beat him to her?

    The other two cousins come up the day of, and her house is very not kid proof, so leaving the babies with the guys isn't an option because dh would be so outnumbered.

    I must say thinking about these possibilities makes me more confident to talk to her about the kids and the dog not being around each other.
  10. d12
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    #20
    I am really big on "my dogs live here, you don't" philosophy when it comes to a lot of things.

    HOWEVER, I also keep my dogs put up when company is over at the house. There is absolutely nothing worse than being uncomfortable with a dog and having forced interactions. I think your request to keep them separate would be more than okay and reasonable.

    I'm sure she'll understand if you mention your concerns. Good Luck!
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