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What do I do now? Very upset and worried

(11 Posts)
bimandbam Sun 29-Nov-15 14:22:29

My dwhippet has bitten my 3 year old nephew.

For the first time ever I left my dm in charge of my dcs yesterday. Ds is 2 and it qas the first night out me and dp have had since I was pg with him. Dd (11) was also here.

Apparently just after I left dsis came to my house with dnephew who is just 3. They had been here about half an hour. Dd was in her room. Ddog downstairs with ds and dnephew, my dm and dsis. Dnephew has gone to cuddle ddog who was with my ds. Dog has snapped and got him on the face. Sister has dived for nephew and dog snapped again. Sister says she had to pull dog away.

I am pretty fucked off with dm and dsis. Dog growled at my ds once about a year ago. I was on the phone and distracted. Ds had sat on dog while she was in her bed. I removed ds quickly and she hasn't growled at him again.

My dsis allows dnephew to pull her own dog about quite roughly. Dnephew has also been bitten by my other sisters dog. Similar situation I think.

I have apologised profusely to my sister. And also my mum. I have stuck up for my dog who I think was placed in a pretty stressful situation. She is also in season. She hardly knows my sister and only vaguely knows my mum. And was probably pretty anxious about the house being full of people she didn't know plus ds was in the middle of them all and she can be pretty protective of him when we are out.

I have just ordered a crate and am going to crate train her so I can keep her safe when we have visitors or when I need to lwave the room or ds is being boisterous.

I am going to take her to the vet and make sure there is nothing physical going on.

And in 3 months time I will have her spayed. She is 5 and we were going to do this anyway. She is a whippet and been with us since she was 6 months old.

She did 'grumble' and me last week for moving her off the sofa. Not really a snap but a bit of a growl.

Is there anything else I can be doing?

ThomasRichard Sun 29-Nov-15 19:04:57

I was going to say crate training. And you probably know this anyway but she must never be left alone with a child.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Sun 29-Nov-15 19:12:22

I think you need to nip her growling at you in the bud. And never leave her with young childden if you aren't there.

Have some sessions with a dog behaviourist? I

Booboostwo Sun 29-Nov-15 19:42:17

You are right to take her to the vet to rule out any physical causes - pain can make otherwise placid dogs snappy.

Her period may also have made her more sensitive, it's well worth spaying her.

I also think you need to think things through a bit more. It sounds as if you could have predicted she would be tense last night so it would have been safer for everyone if you had shut her up in your room.

Most importantly I think you need professional help in the form of a good behaviourist who can assess what is happening. The dog has given you several indications that she is stressed, you need help to identify the triggers, put a training programme is place and ensure she is still safe to be around your DCs.

bimandbam Sun 29-Nov-15 20:35:43

Thank you for your replies. Pretty much what I thought.

Re the stressful situation I didn't know my dsis was coming around. If I had known I would have said for ddog to be shut away. Apparently she was shut in the kitchen as she was 'being a pest around the dcs and their cake' but dnephew let her out again.

If I ever go away again she will have to go in kennels I think.

I haven't reprimanded her when she has growled at me because I thought that was more likely to make them bite. If you punish them for warning behaviour they take it up to biting behaviour without the warning?

I have spoken to a friend tonight who while isn't a behaviourist breeds and trains working dogs and also has dcs so pretty knowledgeable. She has helped me understand what could have happened and what I can do to prevent it escalating.

Crate is ordered and she will be spayed in 3 months. I am also going to do some more obedience training and put a stricter routine in place with her walks. And I am going to ban the titbits she keeps helping herself to from the toddler and insist she only eats from her bowl.

Sister isn't talking to me so unlikely she will be visiting in the short term anyway.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Sun 29-Nov-15 20:43:20

Well your sister could have got off her arse and put the dog back in the kitchen. She was the responsible adult. Although from what you said about her own dog, perhaps not. She should have had the bloody sense to not let her chin climb all over your dog though. Bit stupid really. I think she's as much to blame as the dog.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Sun 29-Nov-15 20:44:11

Her chin? Oh my god, bloody typing. Her child! grin

bimandbam Sun 29-Nov-15 21:04:48

MsAdorabelle I completely agree and told her so which is why she is not talking to me. According to her dogs should tolerate anything we do to them.

I told her that we should treat all animals with kindness and respect and teach our dcs the same. And when we don't do that we leave our dcs in a dangerous place. It's the second dog to bite dnephew. My other sisters dog also bit him.

I don't think it is complete coincidence. Not dnephews fault but dsis needs to teach him better I think.

Arkkorox Sun 29-Nov-15 21:09:27

bim spot on with the not reprimanding the growl. She needs her growl to be able to say ' im not happy' no grown, no pre warning of a bite.

Please get assistance from a trainer but NOT one that spouts anything about dominance or your dog being in a 'pack' etc. Choose one that uses positive reinforcement training.

MaitlandGirl Mon 30-Nov-15 05:18:55

Not going to add to any of the pp's advice (it's all great) but please inform the vet your dog is in season when you make the booking. If possible get the last appointment of the day and stay in the car until the vets is empty of all other clients - it'll be a lot easier on everyone that way.

mrslaughan Mon 30-Nov-15 13:31:39

Do get her checked by the vet, and do get a behaviourist in (it could be the best money you ever spend), to help understand her anxiety.
About your sister - well you can't choose your relatives can you?
In all seriousness my daughter has been bitten 3 times - I know that each time it is her fault....I also know I do everything in my power to educate her about not approaching dogs she doesn't know, how to approach dogs she does know, leaving dogs alone that are sleeping.......I think at nearly 6 she is finally getting it. My son - different personality, never had an issue, but it is the difference in personality, my DD throws herself into life, acts and thinks later.....unfortunately that doesn't work for some animals. Not quite sure why I am sharing this, but just to say that even with responsible parents it can happen - but I do also know that the blame is with my DD every time.

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