Post # 1
I thought of this while responding to another thread and after a conversation I had with my sister n law.
My sis n las is pregnant and they have an almost year old puppy. She is like me where she loves her pup and can’t imagine life without him. So we can usually talk about our “babies” without feeling judged.
Last night she said my brother said something along the lines of “you know when the baby comes we may have to get rid of Bub?” She was like “wtf why” and he said “well if he nips at the baby or puts the baby in danger then we would have to find a new home for him.” She was still upset when telling me this the next day.
To be fair my brother is a man in that he doesn’t think as well as women in some situations. He never should have said that. She does love her dog so much, is highly emotional and doesn’t have much of a bond with her baby yet. But it is also a hard situation.
While I love my dogs so much more then I suppose I could love a child at this point. I do know that when I have children that will most likely change. I could never imagine if my dog nipped at the baby I know that it would be hard but I would have to do what is best for the baby and dog. But that wouldn’t make it easier.
So all that to say how would you handle it if your dog (who you had first) were to nip at your child? And what could dog owners do to prevent this from happening in the first place?
Post # 3
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
SIL needs to put her foot DOWN.
Their dog is old enough to know basic commands and if they work with the dog and research introducing a pet to a new baby there’s NO reason the dog needs to be re-homed.
Were they planning on or TTC when they adopted? If so and he felt this way they NEVER should have gotten a dog.
I would seriously leave FI if he wanted to get rid of my cat.
Post # 4
My personal opinion is that a lot of parents let their very young children “play” with their pets when they are way way too young. A friend of ours had a german shepard, and they would let their 2 year old play with him freely. The child would commonly pull on the dogs ears, often times hurting him without realizing. Well the child was using the dogs ear to pull himself up and the dog took a nip at him, clearly just trying to say “hey that hurts!”. The child was unharmed. So they immediately got rid of the otherwise very gentle dog. I personally would not let my child even be in that situation. Once the kids are older and they can understand that the dog feels pain, etc then they won’t be yanking on the dog. Often times, the reason dogs nip at kids is because they don’t like what the child is doing. Kids will often poke and pull on a dog and they don’t even realize they are causing discomfort.
However… some dogs are just simply not suitable to be around kids under 12. If you’re planning on having kids, that is something to consider when you are getting a dog. If you’re adopting a rescue, make sure that he does well with children during their tempermant testing. If you are getting a puppy, make sure you socialize them around kids.
Post # 5
They have never had a problem with the pup biting and they always planned to have children eventually.
I think he probably heard something at work and got the thought in his head and wasn’t really thinking just kind of throwing it out there.
I do agree that there are ways to prevent it but there are also situations no one could forsee. I think his baby brain is him thinking of all of the worst situations and trying to solve the problem ahead of time.
Post # 6
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
@pecanpie: +1, children definitely need supervising when “playing” with pets of any kind.
Post # 7
I would hope this never happens, but it did happen in our family. When my baby brother was born, our family dog (who had been with us for 3 years) backed my mom into a corner while she was holding him, snarling and growling and nipping at her. My parents decided after it happened twice that they had to re-home him. It was horrible for all of us. I still wonder what else could have been done in that kind of situation.
Post # 8
@pecanpie: Thank you for your answer and I do agree with you children playing and dogs playing are very different and dogs usually nip other dogs when playing.
We have taught our pups that it is not accecptable to bite us but like in the situation you described the dog may very well have been in pain.
Their dog is a rescue they got as a puppy and he is the sweetest thing and has never shown any signs of agression to children or adults but sometimes even the most well behaved dog will do something unexpected.
Post # 9
I am VERY choosy about dogs to prevent this problem. I would rather have no dog than the wrong dog. I would start socializing that puppy around small kids now. I would definitely have treated it like a DOG all along. Many people ruin their pets by treating them like children. I used to foster and this was the #1 problem we faced : ( Not making judgements here because she may already be treating him like a dog. I would get the dog used to sleeping in the place that will always be his. I love laundry or mudrooms for this. I have seen serious problems because the dog was assigned the guest room then it became the nursery and Fido was relegated to the kitchen. I would put the puppy’s food and water dish in an area of limits to this future baby. I always kept it in the laundry room with the cleaning supplies and gated off. The more prep work you do now means the less drastic change the dog will have to face then.
My comment about the wrong dog is because not every dog has the temperment to live well with children. Heck I fostered a dog that had so many wires crossed she just needed to be put down. She would atttack herself! She had major issues and the vet recommended euthanasizing her but I worked for a no kill shelter so no matter how many times she bit someone….yeah a life in a crate. Sad! Many dogs love children though so fingers crossed that this puppy has the right temperment.
Post # 10
It would all depend on the situation and what happened. If my dog nipped out of fear I don’t know that I would automatically get rid of him. If he really bit my child there would be some steps we would take to make sure it didn’t happen again (traiining, not allowing him close to our child). I wouldn’t get rid of my dog unless I feared that it may happen again. We have taken the steps now to make sure we are comfortable that it won’t happen though.
We are constantly tugging on their ears, messing with them when they eat, pulling on their skin. When we play I always get my hands close to their mouths to see if they would bite and they never do.
Post # 11
The vast majority of times, a responsible pet owner can introduce a new baby into the home and have nothing but good experiences.
My neighbors have two massive rotties (I have one myself, too) and two little girls, around 2 and 4; they’ve had two rotties for ages and when their older one died, had a new one within 2 months. These are rescue dogs, too, and from pretty abusive backgrounds. Those dogs are very protective of the girls, but they’re also just gentle as lambs with the girls. The girls ride those dogs like little ponies, and the only problems that have ever happened have been the expected things like clumsy dog accidentally steps on little girl’s foot. No nipping, growling, snapping, anything.
Train your dogs to obey you; teach them that outside is for playing and roughhousing and inside is not; do some basic dog-and-kid-proofing (like buying dog toys that are not attractive to kids, such as Kongs, so there’s no fighting over toys, same with kid toys that are not attractive to dogs); and teach the kids that dogs are to be treated kindly, and you won’t have any problems at all.
And if there is an accident— because accidents will happen— look at what happened before knee-jerking into getting rid of the dog. If the dog nips at the baby because play got out of hand and too energetic, that’s a very different scenario than if the dog nips at the baby asleep in the bassinett.
ETA: many animal rescues and shelters do temperament testing for a small fee. It might be well worth the time and money to have a temperament test done on a pet, to see if he already has any tendencies like food aggression that you need to be aware of. A food aggressive dog isn’t automatically a killer; it just means as both a pet owner and a parent, you need to know how doggie is likely to react if someone puts a hand in his dish, and if that’s a negative reaction, then plan around it and don’t let baby get into a situation where he’s playing with the dog dish while doggy is eating.
Post # 12
@fishbone: Thank you for your insight I agree with you.
Also I wanted to say the little girls riding the dogs like ponies made me laugh because I did that with our huge goldie when I was little and broke my collar bone lol. It wasn’t funny at the time but if I ever tell someone that is how I broke my collarbone they look at me like I am crazy.
Post # 13
I’m planning on getting a dog prior to TTC. We’ve always had pets which have known their boundaries with baby’s and children, so I’m sure so long as we don’t choose an overly aggressive breed, training pup/doggy and baby to live harmoniously shouldn’t be a problem.