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My dad's dog is aggressive

(12 Posts)
Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 09:01:22

Help!

My 3 year old son, other half and I am staying at my dad's house. There's 2 dogs here, my sister's dog (who is as sweet as anything) and my dad's small poodle. My dad's dog has always been very aggressive, snapping and growling frequently. He once bit my sister so hard that she was bleeding, and has done a "warning bite" on my son when he was 2. (It did not break the skin or anything). Now my son is absolutely not allowed to touch him, and is never close to him without me between him and the dog. It's pretty tiring, and he did manage to pat his back once, which resulted in a one second growl.

I have talked to my dad several times about how this is a problem, and whilst he does take it seriously, he doesn't know what to do. It's his first dog, and the dog is 7,5 years old now. When the dog is not aggressive, he is very sweet to everyone apart from my son. He loves cuddles, however he growls if you get close to him when he's eating, or if he's decided an item (mainly outdoor clothing for some reason) is "his".

However - last night my other half was the last to go to bed, and nobody had put the dog in his house for sleeping. Dog was following my other half around the house, growling and snapping, and standing in front of the stair case so he could not get to our bedroom! My other half is very nervous around dogs at the best of times, so understandably he was scared.

Sorry this is a wall of text, just trying to get all the details in. Please does anyone have any advice? My sister and her dog lived here 13 years ago when her dog was little, and that dog is never aggressive at all, so this is new territory for all of us. We don't have anywhere we can keep the dog away from us.

piranharama Fri 30-Dec-16 09:03:35

Do you mean staying as in living there? Or visiting? If visiting - don't go. How horrible for your partner and son. Don't put them through it, that dog should not be around children at all. Its irresponsible.

Starlight2345 Fri 30-Dec-16 09:07:09

I simply wouldn't stay.
Esp not with a 3 year old who he is aggressive too.

Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 09:42:49

We live abroad and are visiting for Christmas (visit 2-3 times a year for a few days). Previously my dad has taken the dog with him to work when he's not been off, and right now the dog is asleep in the basement/entrance area, whilst we are upstairs in the livingroom. I have been thinking perhaps we can keep the dog in another livingroom and shut the door (It's a big house with 3 livingrooms), though I feel like that's a bit unfair on the dog? This option just occurred to me! It's pretty tiring to always be on guard around him (the dog). If we didn't visit, we would never ever see friends and family, as we can't afford a hotel or b&b. So I'd rather have advice on how to better manage it, rather than a "don't visit". The dog is aggressive whether we're here or not, and my dad doesn't know how to manage it, so I'd like to ask for advice for him if that makes sense. He is never aggressive to my dad however, only to other people.

Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 09:53:10

Would a dog calm down if having the snip? I've only had experience with my sister's friendly female dog and my own cats in the past, so a bit clueless on this.

pklme Fri 30-Dec-16 09:56:24

Try keeping a house lead on the dog, so it can be led away when it is behaving badly.

Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 10:02:28

That's a good idea, thank you. My dad has mentioned a muzzle perhaps. It's a very small dog, so he wouldn't be able to do any damage by jumping up on anyone, it's only the actual teeth that can do damage. Perhaps better than shutting the dog in a room on its own all day? Personally I would have given the dog to someone with more experience to handle it, but obviously it's not my dog so not my decision. I don't say that lightly, I have 3 cats that I love and adore, so I know how much animals can mean to people.

Floralnomad Fri 30-Dec-16 10:37:07

If your dad has an issue with the dog being aggressive he needs to get a qualified behaviourist involved , if the only issue is when you visit perhaps it would be best if either you stay at a hotel locally or your dad puts the dog in kennels for the duration of your visits .

Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 10:53:40

Can look in to a behaviourist, though he lives quite rural so there might not be any within a reasonable distance.

I can't afford a hotel, but can look into the dog staying with my gran, as he stays there when my dad is travelling for work. Also a good idea smile Thanks.

piranharama Fri 30-Dec-16 12:02:14

You might be surprised at the amount of behaviourists there can be rurally, as lots and lots of dogs and especially working ones - definitely worth a go

Blackfellpony Fri 30-Dec-16 12:34:19

Sorry no advice but sympathy. MIL has 3 babied toy poodles and they are evil in dog form.
She isn't particularly bothered about them being around our baby either and says they won't hurt him hmm

We ask her to keep the dogs locked up at all times but sometimes they sneak in when she thinks we aren't watching...

Purplebluebird Fri 30-Dec-16 21:09:55

I found a regional dog behaviourist and have emailed her (Dad doesn't live in the UK). black that sounds so frustrating. My dad does take it seriously at least!

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