Toddler jealous of puppy

(47 Posts)
Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 19:40:48

Please do not judge on this. I feel bad enough as is and am just looking for advice. We recently got a labradoodle - my daughter is ten and my son is 3.5. Daughter loves the puppy, no problem there but my son is insanely jealous. He can occasionally be mean to the dog, not overly so but enough that I’m concerned for both. I feel like a total failure as my daughter will be crushed if I have to rehome but I’m exhausted from constantly watching over son and pup to make sure nothing happens. I’ve tried explaining to my Son to be gentle and most of the time he is but at his age I just don’t think he understands properly. Has anyone had this situation and what did they do? I suffer from anxiety as well and it’s currently through the roof. I had best intentions of it being such a lovely thing but it’s turning into a nightmare every day.

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IWishItWasSummer Fri 03-Jan-20 19:45:33

I’ve tried explaining to my Son to be gentle and most of the time he is but at his age I just don’t think he understands properly.

I presume he understands the meaning of ‘no’? One of my pet hates is people who minimise children being ‘mean’ to animals. It’s your job to teach him right from wrong.

gamerchick Fri 03-Jan-20 19:48:32

You have to constantly supervise unfortunately. Mine has ASD and when we got the cat he simply would not leave the poor bugger alone. I had to just keep on top of it. I'd lock the cat in a room when going to the toilet, I sat kid on freezer when I was cooking and so on. Took around 10 months.

Rollonspringtime2020 Fri 03-Jan-20 19:49:29

Rehome obviously..
I am sure someone will want a 3.5 awful dc...
grin
What consequences has your dc been given?

gamerchick Fri 03-Jan-20 19:51:09

And get a bit tougher. No gentle hands and all that stuff. He needs it hammering home that what he's doing is a no no. Like touching the oven.

DICarter1 Fri 03-Jan-20 19:53:03

I think you need to hammer home that he cannot be mean and develop some consequences. Both my kids have asd but we’re very strict with them about how they treat our dog.

QuillBill Fri 03-Jan-20 19:53:24

Yes, tell him off more effectively. Presumably you wouldn’t let him carry on like that if you had had another baby.

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Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:01:02

No of course I wouldn’t...but at the moment the real issue is that the dog could badly hurt my son. We are being strict but I’m guessing in a 3 yos mind that’s used to being the baby it’s causing jealousy. Obviously I would never let it get worse but I just don’t know how to handle the situation.

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Clangus00 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:01:43

He's coming up on 4, of course he understands "no"!
How do you punish him for hurting the pup? Time out? Or just "gentle chats"?

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:02:08

We are being as tough as we can believe me. I just think this jealousy is consuming him unfortunately. Believe me I’m heartbroken by it

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Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:03:03

Yes he does but in his mind he’s not the baby anymore and something is getting the attention he was

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IWishItWasSummer Fri 03-Jan-20 20:05:43

Of course the puppy could hurt your son if you continue to let him hurt it. Never mind “letting it get worse”, just stop your son being mean to the puppy NOW - there is no excuse for anyone being cruel to an animal.

IWishItWasSummer Fri 03-Jan-20 20:06:55

We are being as tough as we can believe me

Not tough enough if he is still hurting an animal. Poor thing would be better rehomed.

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:08:46

And as I just said, he is being reprimanded. He’s a wilful boy though and not quite as simple as “just stop him being mean” obviously I would have done that. He’s not vicious, he just doesn’t act as gently as he should be

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TheMovingFishfinger Fri 03-Jan-20 20:11:43

Have you tried lots of praise when he is being kind to the dog? Making a big deal of how nice that is and what a good boy he is etc etc? Currently trying to teach my 15 month old not to be mean to the dog. So far telling him 'no!' has made him more aggressive. (Takes after my stubbornness hmm). Clapping my hands and acting all enthusiastic when he is gentle seem to encourage him more to continue being nice to the dog.

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:13:03

And that is what I am considering.

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Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:13:59

Yes, thing is he’s always excited to see the dog and I think part of him loves it but doesn’t know how to deal with the other side. And thank you for not judging!

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Doveyouknow Fri 03-Jan-20 20:14:39

I think you will just need to monitor closely until the jealously passes. Is there some way you can give him a role in looking after the dog to make him feel grown up rather than sad about no longer being the baby?

I assume if it was as simple as being stricter or telling him off more you wouldn't be posting here.

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:14:42

Both. And we have been coming down on him heavily the last week

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TopBitchoftheWitches Fri 03-Jan-20 20:17:07

Op have you ever had a puppy before?
They are hard work and mouth.
Mouthing is not biting.

What breed is your puppy and how old?

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:21:42

Exactly. And trust me it’s heart breaking. And for everyone saying about animal cruelty, trust me that’s not me. I used to volunteer at my local rspca for rescue dogs! Never thought I’d have this situation!

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Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:22:21

No I haven’t, he’s an Aussie labradoodle and about 4 months.

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TopBitchoftheWitches Fri 03-Jan-20 20:30:22

Ok, puppies are hard work. But workable. With training they learn good behaviour.
Your child needs to also learn to leave the puppy alone. Your child is too young to be alone with the puppy.

TopBitchoftheWitches Fri 03-Jan-20 20:32:16

What's an Aussie labradoodle?
I know what a labradoodle is here in the UK.

Lou9685 Fri 03-Jan-20 20:33:30

I never leave him alone trust me. I do think he loves the dog but is also jealous. I love the dog he’s very sweet and I’d be heartbroken at having to rehome

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