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To object to my MIL rehoming a Rottweiler?

(64 Posts)
Momdeguerre Sat 04-Jul-09 23:47:13

So, DS is 11 months. DH and I work full time, weird shifts as both bobbies but we manage most of our chidcare between us. Rarely we have to ask for help from our very supportive family.

We looked at nursery care but MIL in particular was vociferous that she did not want 'strangers' looking after her grandchild. So, as a result, occasionally she does childcare for us.

This week they decided to re-home a 3 year old Rottweiler from a rescue centre. Dog has been badly abised in the past and was identified as being unsuitable for being re-homed with children. MIL and FIL are fit but slight 67 and 69 yr olds. They had a dog a few years ago which was lovely but indulged and badly controlled to the point that it attacked a cyclist one day as they were unable to restrain it.

I don't object to them re-homing a dog, totally their decision but I am no longer happy for DS to be cared for by them at their house while they have the dog. They swear it will always be kept in the kitchen but, from previous experience with their last dog, they show neither the ability or intention of managing to do this.

MIL and SIL both called me today to say I ABU. I disagree.

What do you think? Let me have it. . .

FrannyandZooey Sat 04-Jul-09 23:48:29


beetlemum Sat 04-Jul-09 23:49:29

def not being U!

harpsichordcarrier Sat 04-Jul-09 23:50:46

I would not leave any child in their care if they have a history of not being able to control a dog. Rottweilers are big, dangerous dogs.
Sorry you are in this situation, though. I hope you can explain your situation clearly and calmly.

plonker Sat 04-Jul-09 23:51:30

YA absolutely NOT BU!

SecretNinjaChipmunk Sat 04-Jul-09 23:52:52

yanbu at all. can they come to yours to look after ds instead and then leave dog at home?

beanieb Sat 04-Jul-09 23:53:50

I love dogs but my EX's aunt had two Rotties and they are massive and powerful. If, as you say, your inlaws are slight, I would be concerned and would want absolute assurances that the dog would be kept in the Kitchen. Nothing to do with them being dangerous. Even as a 5ft 6" and sturdy bird I felt intimidated by the size and strength of her dogs and wouldn't want any small child of mine around one. Lovely dogs though.

MissSunny Sat 04-Jul-09 23:54:06

Message withdrawn

Alambil Sun 05-Jul-09 00:14:24

seeing as they have neither the ability or intention to reform the dog and control it adequately, yanbu.

due to the dog having a history of abuse and unsuitable to be homed with kids, yanbu - the rescuers don't state that unless necessary.

Momdeguerre Sun 05-Jul-09 00:16:33

I don't blame the dog - if it had been a puppy I really don't think I would have the same concerns.

They are quite reasonable people but they just think that I am being overprotective - even suggesting my DS will have a morbid fear of dogs as a result.

Have asked if she will consider looking after DS at our home. Hopefully she will agree as I think he really benefits from being with family but she suggested that it was an imposition!

Think nursery is a genuine consideration.

pjmama Sun 05-Jul-09 00:16:38

YA most absolutely NBU!!!

All it takes is for someone to forget to shut the door ONCE and this dog has already been assessed as unsuitable for children. The potential result of a mistake is way too severe to be taking the risk.

Stick to your guns regardless of what the ILs think.

PrammyMammy Sun 05-Jul-09 00:31:58

They are big, strong dogs. I believe that if a rotty wanted to get out of a kitchen, it would do so.
My parents have a dalmation that opens doors and jumps stair gates. He is a big softy and doesn't get locked away, but if the gate is locked so dcs can't get up stairs he just jumps it to get up, and if they are in the living room and he needs a drink/bit of peace in the kitchen he will use the handle. He was not trained to do this, and rottys are bigger.
Rescue dogs, with a history of abuse are unpredictable, especially ones a little older.
You would only worry about ds while he was there. Hopefully she will come round and look after your ds at your home.

Numberfour Sun 05-Jul-09 00:40:25


moondog Sun 05-Jul-09 00:43:02

You are being unreasonable.
They can do what they like.
If you decide it is not good enough for yuor child ,then put her some place else.

Do you pay MIL?

Momdeguerre Sun 05-Jul-09 00:44:27

MD - I agree, they can totally do what they like, no objection to that and I have chosen to put my child elsewhere. We do have an arrangement with MIL to renumerate for childcare.

moondog Sun 05-Jul-09 00:45:52

There you go then.Everyone is happy.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Sun 05-Jul-09 00:46:15

YANBU - I would not let him be at their house unless I was there by his side.

My DS is 11 months, he wouldn't stand a chance against a dog like that - they kill much older/bigger/stronger children.

If it has been declared unsuitable for rehoming with children, why on earth did your MIL get it? Does she think the rescue center are exagerating how dangerous it could be?

I would be calling some nurseries and/or childminders on Monday morning.

midlandsmumof4 Sun 05-Jul-09 00:52:53

YANBU-we have two Rottweilers. We have had Zak since he was 6 weeks old, he's 7 this year. Zeus is 5-we adopted him from our son a couple of years ago. They are both lovely dogs but very protective. My son's (now ex) partner refused to let him bring our GD to visit and we didn't mind her concerns in the least. We are considerably younger than your in-laws and share your concerns.

booyhoo Sun 05-Jul-09 03:18:16

both children and dogs are unpredictable and not a good combination together. i would not leave my child there with a dog.

melmog Sun 05-Jul-09 06:54:01


If this rescue centre has said this dog shouldn't be rehomed with children, they have said so for a reason.

I have to be honest, it doesn't sound like they will be able to cope with it anyway and the poor dog will end up being passed back.

I think your in laws are being very irresponsible.

Tambajam Sun 05-Jul-09 07:09:30

I would certainly not let anyone care for my child with a dog in the home as you describe. Just crazy. To say they will be able to keep the dog in the kitchen and out of danger is unrealistic. I'm not even sure I would visit in these circumstances.

ohmeohmy Sun 05-Jul-09 07:19:28

totally NBU. How many times has it been in the news that a carer with a dog situation has ended in maiming or death of a child. Not worth the risk. sorry she feels affronted but she'd feel a lot worse if a terrible thing happened.

littleboyblue Sun 05-Jul-09 07:55:36

My SIL has a rottwieller, and tbh, she is lovely (the dog) and I'd be quite happy to leave my ds's in SIL care while dog is there but her dog is not a rescue dog, she has never been mistreated and there is no reason to believe she would ever attack (any more than there would be for any other animal iyswim)
If anyone had a dog and was told the dog was unsuitable to be around children, I would def not even risk my child going near the house.
I had to take my dog (staff cross) to Battersea dogs home because she started growling at ds1.

What you could do, is make it clear that you are more than happy for your IL's to look after your dc, but in your house without the dog.
It isn't anyone elses decision to make but yours, he is your ds and it is your job to decide what is in his best interests, and I would agree, he should not be put in a possibly dabgerous situation with a dog who has reason not to be around children.

Having said all of that, where did your IL's get the dog? Because if the dog was deemed 'unpredictable' or difficult to control, surely it was irresponsible of the dog shelter/home to hand over care to an older couple?
That's not saying it's ok to leave your child there, just quite interesting really.

hercules1 Sun 05-Jul-09 08:01:50

Seems rather odd that they were allowed to rehome it without the necessary experience.

I think though you are being unreasonable. When our children are older dh and I will only have rescue dogs and the thought has never crossed my mind that my children might object. I will make my own choices just as they are entitled to make theirs about us looking after any grandchildren.
However I wouldnt let my children go round to their house.

QuintessentialShadow Sun 05-Jul-09 08:12:33

My son used to love dogs, and was very friendly with aunts yorkshire terrier.

My inlaws had a german sheppard husky mixed breed. A big dog, as you would imagine. We went there with my son when he was just 2 years old. I realized soon that the dog did not particularly like our little boy. The inlaws were oblivious to this, and as we were going to stay there two weeks, we raised our concerns. To cut a long story short. I ended up carrying my son around when indoors, as the dog would side up with him show his teeth and start snarling with a low voice. Inlaws laughed it off saying not to worry. They loved the dog. Could not see anything worrying in the dogs behaver. One day the dog snapped his teeth at my sons arm. I managed to lift him higher so the wound was very slight.

Following this was years and years of total dog terror. He would not visit the aunt with the yorkshire terrier. He would not leave our front door if our neighbour was out with her dog.

It took 5 years, and he is now, age 7 warming up to dogs again. His friend has a pure bred husky, which is boisterous but friendly.

Sorry it was a bit long.

You are right to be concerned. But you cannot tell your inlaws what to do, in the same way as they cannot tell YOU what to do.

I would not mention the dog and find a nursery or childminder for childcare.

If your inlaws think it ok for them to keep caring for your child at the same time as they care for an abused rehomed rottweiler, I would seriously doubt their reasoning capabilities.

If they DO ask, just say you dont want to bother them, now they have their new dog to look after. It must be hard work, it needs lots of exercise, and this breed of dog dont really go well with little children, and you dont want to give them the added stress of ensuring your child comes to no harm.

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