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To not want my in laws to get this dog ...

229 replies

FloralFantasy · 28/05/2013 07:42

I know this will make me VERY unpopular but as a rule, I don't like dogs. I hate the dogs mess on pavements, I hate being out for a walk and having dogs rush up to me and I hate aggressive barking when you go past houses or knock on doors.

I was attacked by a collie as a young teen and also have a cousin who was attacked by her friends dog (with no history of aggression, was not aggravated, lunged at a cat on her lap and it got nasty) in my presence requiring reconstructive surgery.

My in-laws provide childcare for my 7mo and 2yo DCs. They offered and were really keen to have them two afternoons a week. They also do other odd spells if I need to pop out (they live five minutes down the road).

They have used to have dogs but the last one passed away 18 months ago. My BIL has announced he is getting MIL a dog for her birthday. She is excited. He has found a two year old Staffordshire cross and they are picking it up today. In the advert it says "not suitable for a household with young children".

I questioned this but apparently it will be fine once it gets to know young children, it just has never had contact with them. The owners are selling as they are moving somewhere smaller without the room for a dog.

I have said fine, they can get the dog, but they can't have the children round there anymore.

I'm told I am being very unreasonable, hurtful and rude.

Am I? What would be the safest way to introduce the dog to children?

OP posts:
CaptainJamesTKirk · 28/05/2013 08:35

YANBU. Seek alternative childcare. I would not be happy with this at all. Do what your gut tells you. Heaven forbid your child so much as gets a little nip you would not forgive yourself.

CSIJanner · 28/05/2013 08:35

BTW - your BIL is a tool.

zippey · 28/05/2013 08:36

I personally would not take the risk. Getting a dog like that shows they are not responsible people. It only takes a moment to maul. Be careful as those dogs can be very aggressive. Also could the person selling the dog have reasons for selling he is not telling you about?

Wishiwasanheiress · 28/05/2013 08:37


Unfortunately far from it. The maulings of children in the newspapers recently from small dogs (baby and jack Russell type at a grandparents) and recently the 14yr old make me say NO to this.

Further reason - the blooming advert! If it says no kids, question why? A dog doesn't just like kids. They need association. This dog is being rehomed. His pack is being ripped apart. He's in unfamiliar surroundings. New rules. New owners. He needs time to settle. Adding kids to that is a recipe for sadness. I'm thinking of that poor mutt too. It's not fair on either kids or dogs.

Also FYI Labradors have one of the strongest bites of all dogs. Just because they are known as nice doesn't mean it cannot or will not bite. I love dogs but you must respect them. Responsible owners know respect is key. Even the sellers are respectful as they state no kids. To assume blindly otherwise is painfully stupid.

Sorry op but you are right.

FloralFantasy · 28/05/2013 08:37

Right, have arranged to work from home this week but my unchild friendly boss was not impressed (I'm a graphic designer so it makes no difference really). DH is finishing early so I can attend a meeting one day. We've been discussing me just doing freelance work which I do anyway in addition to 3 days employed so might just be the push I need.

Just feel very upset that this has been sprung on us and that nobody else can see reason. I'm the big bad as I "hate" dogs.

OP posts:
BeerTricksPotter · 28/05/2013 08:38

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MumnGran · 28/05/2013 08:39

angelsonhigh Hopefully they are fairly intelligent and have enough sense
I wouldn't want to trust the safety of small childrens to a "hope" that someone might have common sense and exhibit intelligence.

Of course it is "their house, their rules" .... but the OP has the absolute right not to allow her children to be at risk. Their house - their decision whether dog or GC take priority.

GoblinGranny · 28/05/2013 08:42

Well, best case scenario is that one or both of your inlaws gets bitten, and they finally see your point.

FloralFantasy · 28/05/2013 08:42

They asked about he not suitable for young children in the advert and were told that they only put that as the dog has never met young children, not because it had ever been aggressive towards them.

I don't believe the owner at all.

OP posts:
MumnGran · 28/05/2013 08:42

Floral .... DH is on your side .... so leave him to deal with his family.
That way it cannot be placed at the door of your own nervousness with dogs.
Just make sure DH isn't quoting you as the reason, but states his own very appropriate concerns.

Freelancing sounds like a great solution to me Grin

Nanny0gg · 28/05/2013 08:44


What exactly have your ILs said to you and your DH about your (very reasonable concerns), now they know you won't give in?

zzzzz · 28/05/2013 08:44

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeerTricksPotter · 28/05/2013 08:45

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

diddl · 28/05/2013 08:45

Have they already met the dog & fallen in love with him?

Otherwise, why didn't they say, oh not the dog for us, then?

TripleRock · 28/05/2013 08:48


Contrast my parents who when they had concerns about their terrier came up with a solution for our visits which involved a crate and 2 seperate stair gates so there was no chance of the dog even seeing my baby DD even though there were 4 adults present at all times and they weren't even providing childcare. They had discussed this with us at length prior and were at pains to ensure we were 100% satisfied. That is what I expected of them as responsible dog owners tbh.

ChickensHaveNoEyebrows · 28/05/2013 08:49

YANBU. A private ad could say bloody anything. 'Not suitable for young children' could mean 'Gets a bit grumpy', or 'Doesn't much enjoy screeching so urinates with terror', or 'Will try to chew the limbs of any fast moving small people'. It tells you nothing really about the dogs reaction to children. I'd also wonder about other possible issues. I have two dogs, I adore them, and I also have a 2 year old niece who is visiting us for the first time in a few weeks. I am already thinking about how I will keep the dogs and the child separated and whether I should kennel my older dog for the duration. Only a complete idiot risks mixing dogs and children when you're not sure how the dog will feel about it. Ultimately, there is no contest. A pissed off, or frightened, dog has a hell of a lot of teeth and small children are extremely delicate.

itsMYNutella · 28/05/2013 08:49

Floral totally agree, YANBU! Get DH to speak to his mum and explain his concerns. I'd love to have a dog (and am working on my DP) :) but I've also said I wouldn't get one until I know we are done with having babies and the children are a bit older.

I really think your ILs are being rather selfish and short sighted.

Inertia · 28/05/2013 08:52

Yanbu. I would go so far as to say that it would be completely irresponsible for any adult to allow open unsupervised contact between children and this dog.

The advert says a household with small children is not suitable for this dog. It may have already shown signs of aggression towards children, which could be why the present owners want rid of it.

At the very least it is likely to be unsettled and confused in a new home with new owners. It needs its own space and time to adjust to new surroundings. By not separating the dog and children, your ILs would be making unfair demands on the dog, and behaving like stupid selfish fools towards your children.

Anybody willing to show such utter disregard for the safety of my children would not be looking after them.

McFarts · 28/05/2013 08:52

Why are they even buying a dog via a private advert? :( there are literally hundreds of dogs out there needing loving home who have all been professionally assessed in foster homes prior to being rehomed! by reliable rescues. The fact that the old owner is happy to let the dog be rehomed on a home with young children around that could possibly stress the poor dog out is also not on!

girlsyearapart · 28/05/2013 08:53

I have a Staffie and 4 dc but he is well used to them & is good with children.
It's not a specific breed that should or shouldn't be trusted with kids.
No dog can be trusted 100% with kids.

QuintessentialOldDear · 28/05/2013 08:59

It is totally irresponsible to use your children to train an adult dog to get used to children - when the advert categorically states it is not suitable around children. It is just common sense.

Divorce the bastard and move to the Orkneys. Or Miami.

sashh · 28/05/2013 09:00

Could you compromise with the dog shut away when your children are there?

We had the softest, soppiest dog, she would curl up with my brother by the fire and they would both fall asleep.

But, when one particular relative visited, who was scared of dogs, she (dog not relative) was relegated to the kitchen.

I love dogs and staffies can be great but I would never leave a dog and child alone together.

I might let a 2 year old meet a dog I knew was docile and start saying the dog needs to sniff you before you touch it, then the dog would go away while the child was there.

Dogs are pack animals and they need to know they come last.

extracrunchy · 28/05/2013 09:00

Is there any way you can contact the people selling the dog and tell them it's about to go to a home with kids regularly visiting? Do you think they'd think twice about allowing your PIL to take it? They're probably not complete idiots trying to send it to whoever will take it quickest if they've stipulated no kids in their ad.

GoblinGranny · 28/05/2013 09:01

'The fact that the old owner is happy to let the dog be rehomed on a home with young children around that could possibly stress the poor dog out is also not on!'

Do you think the inlaws told the seller that? I don't.
The level of questioning and assessing of responsible ownership done by rescues is probably the reason that the ILs didn't go there in the first place.

DontmindifIdo · 28/05/2013 09:08

I'd assume your PIL presented themselves as a retired couple who's DCs had grown up, so no fears on the current owner if the dog has been known to snap at children.

OP - you are doing the right thing - as others have said, you can't let them 'experiment' with your DCs to see if their theory that the dog just needs to get to know children and will be fine is right or not. If they are right, they'll be smug and you'll feel silly. If you and the previous owner are right, then your DCs will be suffering the concequences of your PIL's experiment for the rest of their lives.

For childcare, look on your council website they should be able to list all the registered childminders in your area, hit the phones, someone might have a space.

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