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to not want him parenting my newborn with me?

(79 Posts)
WestieMamma Sun 12-May-13 18:02:24

Because he's such a know-it-all and I feel under so much scrutiny and pressure. The slightest peep out of the baby and he's there, giving me dirty looks for not responding quicker. He watches everything I do with a critical look on his face. He's even taken to supervising the baby when he sleeps and getting shirty with anyone close enough to disturb the sleeping baby.

I understand that he wants to be involved especially as he'll never be a parent himself (vet removed his bits after he tried to hump the postman), but AIBU to think he's taking it too far?

FourArms Tue 14-May-13 20:29:12

My mum's whippet would always jump up to say hello when we went round so her feet would be near my belly button. From the day I got a BFP she stopped, only starting again when DS1 was born by c/s - ouch! I yelped the first time she did it post c/s and she didn't do it again for months. Stopped again when I was pg with DS2. Amazing animals. She would also go & check on them while they slept - would go into both their rooms & then come back down. Was unhappy if their doors were wedged shut.

She was a rescue dog who didn't like them as toddlers (she just hid), but in older age loves them & will let them help her when she falls (unsteady on her feet on our laminate floors).

We'll miss her when she passes on sad

RatherBeACyborg Tue 14-May-13 19:32:56

Aw, that's lovely. Especially as CyborgCat still refuses to acknowledge the dds. grin

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 18:28:42

What CrabbyBigbottom said!

I don't think anybody's ever said that before! grin

Booboostoo Tue 14-May-13 17:46:40

What CrabbyBigbottom said!

Some of the behaviours described in this thread that people find endearing sound very much like signs of stress in the dog. Inadvertedly ignoring signs of stress may lead to the escallation of the stress and its release in other inappropriate behaviour (which may include bitting) so it's always worth learning how to read your dog.

A toddler hugging and kissing a dog, for example, is incredibly cute and from a human perspective it's a lovely display of affection. I don't doubt that some dogs will also welcome this kind of affection but many, well adjusted dogs, will be stressed by it and try to show it through 'dog language signs' that are not picked up by humans. People whose dogs have bitten often say 'it came out of nowhere' or 'he's never done this before' but the dog may have been trying to communicate his discomfort for a while without anyone hearing him.

Resource guarding has nothing to do with dominance theory or the pecking order (concepts I do not personally subscribe to when it comes to dog training). Dogs may guard food, food bowls, sleeping areas, doorways, and even people. They may guard because they feel a need for the object (a nice chew), because they have been taught the owner removes the object without rewarding its surrender (owner's shoes) or because they feel unsure or stressed. Resource guarding is often a sign of a generally unsettled dog but the good news is that it can be addressed with a variety of techniques (strengthening the 'leave it' command, NILIF, etc.). Resource guarding of people, especially children, should be dealt with with advice from a professional - it's not something to be alarmed about, but it is something that should be promptly and correctly addressed.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 17:22:31

Sgt I don't want to make anyone sad! Dogs have evolved to adapt to us and our peculiar ways - I think they make ever such a lot of allowances for our bizarre and inexplicable ways of doing things. grin I'm sure you haven't caused him lots of stress, maybe sometimes he just thinks "geez I couldn't say it any clearer, why isn't she getting it!!" grin

I just think that sometimes we are so used to our pet dogs that we forget that they aren't humans in furry coats but animals with a totally different language and set of priorities (I know I do sometimes!). If an adult inadvertently pushes a dog too far and elicits a warning response, then that's usually not too serious (depending on the size/breed/bite inhibition of the dog). But if it's a child, then even a quick snap can catch a child wrong and cause disfigurement or worse, and certainly trauma and fear for everyone. I've been trying to drill into DD since she was tiny, how to treat dogs respectfully and not to invade their space or make them uncomfortable. She's ten and it's still an ongoing battle! hmm I love to see dogs and children, but I do sometimes cringe at how little the children are respecting the dogs' boundaries. They are animals, not toys.

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 14-May-13 16:31:33

crabby I have just read that and going to look for further reading. I have had my dog for 11 years and would have thought myself pretty clued up but I am quite sad now to think of the stress I may have inadvertently caused him over the years. One really good thing though is that I can see that he really is trying to elicit a response from my ds and it makes me wonder how much of ds's difficulties due to ASD that he senses.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 16:23:39

There are some great books out there as well Too - I really had some "Aha!" moments of enlightenment when reading about this stuff and it helped me recognise when my dog is getting stressed - especially with other dogs. It also makes it fascinating to watch how dogs interact with one another and with people, when you understand a bit of their language.

Your dog sounds lovely! smile

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Tue 14-May-13 15:49:57

That leaflet is very interesting, Crabby. I shall read it properly when I get home and can observe my dog at the same time!

wannaBe Tue 14-May-13 15:43:35

When ds was six weeks old we went to my parents for Christmas dinner. We took my dog with us (she was my first guide dog and a yellow Labrador), when we sat down to dinner ds was asleep in his carseat. The dog, who was usually inseparable from me, lay down next to the carseat and stayed with ds throughout the meal.

When he had his injections the dog became very upset when he cried.

I'm on my third guide dog now and ds is ten, and I am certain the dog loves ds more than he loves me.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 15:24:50

Sorry for thread derail, btw. blush I just think that dogs are so frequently misunderstood or put in situations they aren't comfortable with, not because they're not loved, but just because there's been so much misinformation over the years about what dogs are and what makes them tick.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 15:16:50

He lies still as she climbs all over him, sticks her fingers in his eyes and mouth and gives him huge cuddles.

Too that's so touching that he loves your DD so much, but please please don't let her do that. Any dog, however gentle and loving, really doesn't want to be treated like that. If she inadvertantly really hurt him or made him jump and he snapped at her, you would feel awful, he would probably be put down, and she could be seriously injured or worse.

Scared dogs who have been punished for growling (I'm not suggesting you have done this, but you said he's a rescue) or are just too scared to assert themselves will often suppress this natural warning. The next stage up the scale is to snap or actually bite. It's so so much better to learn about dog calming signals and remove the source of stress, than to regret afterwards that a dog has bitten, snapped or even growled at your child.

You (or anyone else - I'm really not having a go at you) can read more about calming signals here. I think every dog owner (and their dogs!) would benefit from knowing this stuff, but particularly owners of nervous or rescue dogs.

Some of the main calming signals (signs that dogs use on each other to say 'chill out' 'that's enough' 'give me some space' 'back off you're making me uncomfortable' etc) are
The look-away - direct eye contact is a challenge to a dog, unless you're talking/blinking etc. Watch dogs interacting and you'll see them using this all the time. You can have much hilarity by staring at your dog for a moment and then doing the look-away - do it a couple of times and they'll definitely react.
Yawning and licking their lips - big signal of mild stress, telling you that they're not entirely comfortable or are asking you to be kind and gentle.

If your child is climbing on your dog (this is really not just to you Too) and the dog is looking away with its ears slightly back, licking its lips and yawning frequently, this is an uncomfortable dog. Don't make it use a stronger message!

TooExtraImmatureCheddar Tue 14-May-13 13:50:37


Dog and DD had a rocky start as dog was scared - he's a rescue dog and seemed to think he would be kicked out. He would howl or bark when she cried. After a few weeks, though, he would come and tell me if she was crying, and he started supervising nappy changes, sticking his nose in and whining - making sure I'm doing it right! He greatly disapproved of baths and used to stick his head over the side of the bath and try to lick DD dry. Now she is 14 months and adores him. He lies still as she climbs all over him, sticks her fingers in his eyes and mouth and gives him huge cuddles. He does knock her over when he gets excited, though. Has been known to run straight into adults (whippet/Staffie cross) and send them flying.

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Tue 14-May-13 11:48:57

I realised last night that my dog has to be near DS at all times - even when he has his nightly bath, she lies outside the bathroom. I take him into my room to get him dried and dressed, she's at the bottom of his cot (just lying there) and then I take him downstairs for his last feed and she lies at/on my feet.

She always had to be around for storytime with DD - we only stopped bedtime stories last year when I was pregnant and in bed asleep before DD grin The dog would come for (in DD's words) "group hugs" and lie on DD while the story was read, then come downstairs with me once DD had been tucked in.

Ah, she's lovely smile

Teabird Tue 14-May-13 11:44:43

We have a beautiful Doberman who looked after me all the time I was pregnant with DD. When I got really big he would lie with his head gently resting on my bump and if I left the room and was gone for longer than a few minutes he would come and check where I was. This included sitting in the bathroom while I had a shower. If Dh and I ever had an argument he position himself right next to me as if to say 'I'm on mummys side!!'
Now that DD is here, he dotes on her and has to check on her every morning and night as well as a million times during the day and lies outside her door at night, he obviously doesn't think the monitor or myself do a good enough job and has to be watching her even when asleep.
I love it, he is so devoted to her and she is only 6 months old!!

EggsMichelle Tue 14-May-13 10:41:52

Considering re naming our boxer Nannie. He was a little unsure of DS when he was new born, and would grumble (boxers don't growl, they talk!) when DS was crying. But DS instantly attached to the dog (smiling, laughing and grabbing at him) and now the dog loves him.

WestieMamma Tue 14-May-13 10:28:10

I would, but the cats are unionised and I can't afford their fees.

Hamwidge Tue 14-May-13 10:24:53

Our dog used to guard me when I was young, and he always knew when one of the family as hurt or upset, he would put his head on their knee and just stay there. He would also lick any cuts or grazes, and they always healed quickly!

He couldn't stand it when two of us started playfighting, he didn't know who to protect so he would chase his own tail and whimper.

WorraLiberty Tue 14-May-13 10:17:44


If you don't like it, pay for proper childcare hmm


melika Tue 14-May-13 10:13:34

Ah the lump in my throat! Stop it now.

I have a few pictures where my DS1 is lying asleep on the mat in front of the fire in the same position as my old Sadie, a cross Jack Russell mongrel, such a lovely, intelligent dog.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:09:30

However I do agree a bit about the resource guarding.

Still some lovely doggy tales here. I wish our pooch had an unbreakable bond with my DD - she's actually a bit nervous of her because DD tends to crowd her with over-enthusiasm.

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:07:04

That should have been were, not was. blush <pedant>

CrabbyBigbottom Tue 14-May-13 10:05:53

Dogs want to be at the top of the pile,i would be keeping a wary eye.

I'm sorry but this is nonsense, based on dated and discredited ways of thinking that see dogs as wanting to be 'alpha wolves'. Firstly, dogs are not wolves, and secondly, the observational data on wolf pack hierarchy was totally flawed because it was based on captive wolf 'packs' and not natural family groups. Please don't derail a nice heartwarming thread!

SgtTJCalhoun Tue 14-May-13 09:19:38

"dogs want to be top of the pile".

What is your reason for stating this please?

reelingintheyears Tue 14-May-13 09:09:00

I agree with Booboostoo,it looks cute and i love the bond our DC have with our dog.

But the dog should always be at the bottom of the pecking order in a family and a dog guarding a new born would be a bit of a worry to me.

Dogs want to be at the top of the pile,i would be keeping a wary eye.

Booboostoo Tue 14-May-13 09:00:30

Some lovely stories and the bond between a child and a dog is a wonderful thing.

I don't want to seem like I don't have a sense of humour and I understand the OP is lighthearted but none the less can I just say that if the dog is actually stopping the cats from approaching the baby he is resource guarding which is a sign of stress and should be addressed with training (ditto with the dog being in any way uncomfortable with people approaching the baby). A dog crying when a baby cries is also a sign of stress that should be addressed.

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