Post # 1
So the husband and I have a 5 year old and two rather large dogs both 1yo. One is a black lab/tick hound we’ve had since she was 3 months old, the other is a german sheppherd that we got about 2 months ago from a shelter.
So I’m out back in the apartments and walking both dogs, my daughter running around playing. The little 7 year old boy comes outside and wants to play with the dogs. He does this pretty much every day for the last week but after yesterday I’ve been much more reluctant to let him near the dogs. Firstly, he asked to walk our lab who is the most lovable dog with kids. So I let him walk her in circles where I could still keep watch on her. He started grabbing her collar and choking her to get her to go where he wanted her to go. He kept taking her stick and throwing it while he was holding her collar so she would pull but he wouldn’t let her go. Teasing her basically. Then I take my daughter on a walk and the neighbor kid decides to follow. While walking past one apartment he saw a pit looking out the window. Instead of continuing to walk he starts running to the window barking at the dog, screaming at the dog, knocking on the glass etc. I know he’s not my kid but he was with my kid and his parents weren’t there so I scolded him for it. You just don’t do that for so many reasons. The dog could get out, find a way out or even break the glass to get out and bite, by teasing the dog it makes the dog aggressive, it ruins blinds when the dogs are freaking out like that, and among other reasons it’s just wrong.
So getting back to today, the kid is outside again while I’m walking the dogs. I’m int he middle of training them so they were on extremely short leashes. I’m working on their leash pulling. He asks if I will let him walk the lab and I say “no, not today”. He walks away and a few minutes later he comes running up to the lab and sheppherd and jumps at them and screams. The sheppherd barks once and gets alert. I’ve told this kid NUMEROUS times not to mess with the sheppherd as he’s new and we still don’t know his limits or what he tolerates. I tell the kid “You can’t just run up to someone elses dogs jumping and screaming at them, you are going to freak them out and they might attack you!” He says nothing and takes a few steps back. Then does it again! The sheppherd got defensive and started barking a LOT. So in order to avoid the sheppherd slipping out his collar again like he has (but he’s never been aggressive or anything of the sort) I got him to sit and held him and told the boy to just go back home until I could get the dogs inside.
His mom overheard and is all mad now.
It’s so frustrating. That kid is going to get bit by someones dog one day, and knowing that family they will blame it on the dog. What do you do about kids like this?
Post # 3
Ugh! You did the right thing protecting that child. His parents should be watching him and teaching him to stay away from other people’s animals unless expressly permitted and then, very gently!
Post # 4
Same thing you do. I have a mastiff that I have had since she was 8 weeks old. She used to think everyone was on this Earth for her. She LOVED people and was extremely friendly. When I left my ex, I left her. I had to as I was renting and could not take her. I was heartbroken. When I met my Fiance, even though we were barely JUST dating, he immediately told me to get her (ex always told me to come get her when I could) and he would keep her. She changed. A lot. Apparently, I found out through ex relatives, that my ex had neglected and abused her. She was left outside for days on end, alone, since he would go away and apparently was taking his anger out on her. She became very, very protective of me and the my kids. She is friendly, but will make her presence known. She has not bit anyone, but sits and barks very loudly and will not let anyone near me. Walking her in our neighborhood has become a nightmare. People feel its ok to leave their dogs off of a leash or kids just run up to her. We pull her lead tight, and tell kids to not come near her. Same with the dogs. We keep her lead tight and tell people they better come get their dog. It’s hard, but people, especially kids, need to know and learn that not every dog is friendly.
Post # 5
My nephew teases their family dog to the point of cruelty, and his parents do nothing. he cornered my dog under the dining room table, did God knows what to her, and got a nip on the cheek as a result. I cant count how many times I told him to stay a respetful distance from her, but he keeps at it. Yelling, stomping, and charging her like you descibed.
Fotunately shes a smaller dog, and we’ve trained pretty good bite inhibition into her, so it barely even left a red mark, and was gone within an hour.
I cany trust him, or his parents so we dont bring her to family gatherings anymore, which sucks.
If parents arent on board with teaching proper behaviour around dogs, youre kind of in a tough spot. I would definitely not let him play with, walk, or even approach your dog again. God forbind something should happen, you’ll be the one in court, or at the vets putting him down by cpurt order, and the kid will have learned sweet fuck all.
Post # 6
It’s amazing how these kids are, I always knew as a kid not to approach any dog unless the owner said it was OK, and even then never to run up on it but to slowly approach with a hand out to sniff. The thought of running up to a dog jumping and screaming was always common sense to me.
Post # 7
Ugh, that’s awful! I’m so sorry. Under the circumstances I wouldn’t hesitate to tell him that you can’t let him spend time with you and the dogs anymore because he has too hard a time treating them respectfully. It’s not safe for the dogs or for him.
Post # 8
I would want to smack that kid. I hate how people do stupid things to animals and the animals get blamed. Tell the parents to put their kid on a leash.
Can you have a conversation with the mom and tell her that your dogs are not aggressive but they are still animals and may react unexpectedly if they are startled or threatened by her son?
Post # 9
Thank you all for your posts, I will talk to her in the morning about her son, for everyones safety. His especially, he needs to learn not to do that to any animal, especially if it’s a strangers dog!
Post # 10
Ugh! The kid sounds like he needs some serious supervision!
I take my dog to a dog park not too far from our house and one time there was a little boy there (with his parents!!) who was playing with her. At first I thought it was cute, but then he started jumping at her to startle her!
My precious dog is a rescue baby who had been seriously mistreated in her former life. She is VERY skittish. The little boy scared her and she was cowering. I walked over, picked my dog up (she is not very big) and said something like “That’s not nice at all! No more playing.” to him. I didn’t care if his parents heard me or not.
Post # 11
I definitely understand where you are coming from on this one. The first step is to definitely speak to the parents in a nice way to let them know that you are worried more about the child’s safety than anything else. As long as you spin it this way, then maybe you guys can work together to not only teach the child, but to socialize the shephard with children through him.
Knowledge is power, and unfortunately in this world people are still way too ignorant about dogs!!!! My brother has a 10.5 month old rottweiler and he is sweet as can be. I’m trying to get him out into the suburbs to let him meet some kids (I live in the country, but children have been coming up to him in big groups, running, screaming, etc….and now he’s actually becoming SCARED. This could end up being a dangerous situation when he is 150pounds….
I wish I could sit PARENTS down and educate THEM to educate THEIR CHILDREN about dogs and dog safety!!! I was always taught at a young age how to appropriately approach a dog.
1. ASK PERMISSION from the owner… if you haven’t taught your child this much then you’ve got a problem already.
2. SLOWLY approach. This one really isn’t as much common sense, but we should spread the word to parents who have children.
I feel bad for the child because it seems that he just hasn’t had a good lesson on dog manners. This is where a continuous circle of ignorance comes in…
Post # 12
This topic makes me so angry.
I have a wonderful/beautiful/happy 11 month old great Dane who loves every adult on the planet, but doesn’t love kids. I’m not sure why exactly he doesn’t like kids, or why he feels uncomfortable around them but he does and always has and we have had him since he was a baby. My son is very good around him, knows how to act, knows not to charge at him, etc.. BUT, I made a stupid mistake a few months ago and I left them alone together in a room while the dog was sleeping (I was just folding laundry downstairs and I didn’t give it a thought because they dog had never done anything aggressive at this point). While I was out of the room, my son leaned over and kissed the dog while he was sleeping and our dog bit him in the face. He ended up with two gashes and a few stitches. We were actually very lucky it wasn’t worse, as I’m sure you can imagine Great Danes have giant mouths and he could have done a lot of damage if he wanted to. It was an awful, terrible experience.
Me kept our dog, and we’ve been working like mad since this happened to try and rehabilitate him, and it is HARD. We keep him separated from all children all the time unless we are holding on to him.
When we take him out for a walk we avoid all children. We cross the road if we see them coming, we don’t go to parks, we will yell “stop!” of we see a kid ruNing towards us. It’s also very hard, because a GreaT Dane attracts a lot of attention everywhere he goes. We get kids all the time that still try to run up to him even tho we are yelling at them to stop. We get parents who chase after their charging children yelling “oh it’s ok, my kid loves dogs” and I literally have to scream back at them as I’m turning in the opposite direction “ya well my dog doesn’t like kds! ” it’s so frustrating!!
i am surprised sometimes tho when I see 2&3 year olds that stop and ask if they can pet our dog. That’s pretty awesome when you can get a kid that young to stop and think before acting. But I’m so affraid for what could possibly happen with these children who don’t learn how to act around dogs. It’s frightening.
Post # 13
@FortiesFlare: I’m not meaning to be rude at all here, but it’s actually worse to avoid children and also EVEN worse to get so worked up and scared when a child comes up to your dog. I totally understand the uncontrollable fear that you probably feel when you see kids coming, but your dog can sense that and will play off of it. Also, avoidance will never help the situation because he won’t get used to kids. If you cross the road when you see kids coming then he’ll learn that kids are something to be scared of….
If you are truly worried he will bite a child just for walking on the same sidewalk as him, you should get a muzzle and just go for walks with kids around until you feel secure that he recognizes that kids are not a threat. Avoiding parks and crossing the road is probably the worst thing you could do for your puppy right now. He is still young. Now’s the time to let him learn that kids are harmless. It’ll also make your walks more stress free and enjoyable 🙂
Post # 14
What’s worse is when adults do these stupid things. We’ve had two incidents when grown adults (questionable) barked at our dog in order to say “hello”. The first time he was just 9 weeks old, and a large black lady came out of nowhere and went on barking loudly and aggressively at him – he was terrified for the split second before we left that situation, but is now very afraid of black women. Just last week, a man who was with his wife and kids did the same thing, this time I gave him a nasty look and said “NO, that’s NOT how you say hello to a dog” and walked away. Now you wonder why these kids don’t know any better if their parents don’t either?!
Post # 15
@kris325: If the mom is too stupid to watch her own kid around strange dogs, then you did her a favour. You never know what can happen with a ANY dog, let alone a dog that an annoying kid is teasing and bothering. I’d be happy to let my little man eat him 😛
I have been in the same situation as you and I reacted in the same way. No, it’s not your kid, but it is your dog and thus will be your problem if the stupid kid provokes the dog into biting him. Oh, how I hate kids sometimes even though I know it’s the parents’ fault 😛
You have every right to do what you did, and I would suggest you keep doing it until the kid gets the hint – or even better, go right to the mother and put the onus on her to keep her kid away from your dogs. You have your own kid to watch and don’t need to watch someone else’s too!
Post # 16
@BoxerLady: Thank you!
When the mother gets off work I’m going to talk to her, let her know how her son has been hehaving toward children and ask her to keep her son away from my dogs until he can learn to treat them properly.
I bring my dogs and let the kids play with them outside, under VERY close observation. If I see either dog stiffen, stop wagging or anything of the like I quickly run to the dog and pet it and love on it and show it that everything is OK. Typically I only have to do this with the sheppherd as the lab/hound is absolutely the sweetest dog with kids. My 5 year old just brought her in her bedroom for a tea party or something, the normal for her. I’ve never once seen the lab get aggressive since she was 3 months old.
However the sheppherd came from a shelter so I have no clue what he experienced before hand. And I’ve only had him a couple months and he has shown aggression twice. Not biting or anything but growling when the lab tried to eat his food, which we have trained him not to do, and one other time when a friend came over. The friend was teasing the lab trying to “play” and the sheppherd got territorial and started growling and barking. Needless to say the friend learned not to tease my dogs and didn’t even get bit! He’s never shown any other aggression apart from that until he barked at the kid. But even barking he wasn’t growling or anything, it was as if he was warning the kid and not actually planning to strike.
But you just never know, so I bring them outside and let the kids throw sticks for them and all but I guess that’s going to have to stop until this boy can learn how to properly interact with a dog.