Last Saturday my three year old son bent down to pick up a toy and was bitten on the face by our Cocker Spaniel. The injury required stiches on his lip and face. My dog is eight, almost nine years old. She has previously bit on two other occasions but had never bitten my son. She continously growls when he walks by and I am concerned over his safety. We are very attached to her and she is a part of our family. I have thought of giving her to another owner but I am worried she may bite another person. I don't think she would be able to adjust to another home, either. I feel my only option is to put her to sleep. We are very confused as to what to do with her at this point. Any suggestions??
If you took your dog into the hospital or doctor for treatment, they are required by law, to investigate your dog and your home situation. It may be out of your hands whether you want your dog euthanized or not.
This is why it is so important to keep up on a dogs' vaccinations, even the most even tempered dog (although yours does not sound that way) can snap, if a child accidently stepped on a tail or paw or in this case, innocently took a toy off the floor.
If the dog is as aggressive as you mention, do you value the safety and well being of your child, moreso than the dog? If so, you've answered your question already.
I am sorry that your child has suffered this traumatic experience and sincerely hope there is no long lasting scarring. A friend of my son's was bitten in the face by their family dog at age 3 and has had many surgeries to correct the damage.
Good luck with his healing and whatever you decide to do about keeping a dog that sounds like she is not suitable as a family pet.
I know that I said that euthinasia is really when you think it's the right choice, and I'm telling you this...
If you have really no other idea of what to do with your dog, then it's your choice to euthinize her or not.
It might make a big, even huge hole in your family, and a big space in your house if you decide to do it, but I agree with you. It's really the only last thing to do. If your dog doesn't make any progress in her behavior in the next couple of days or in a week, then get it done with right now, because you are taking a big risk with your son and your dog in the same house, he could get bit a second time, and, it's just a risk.
Another problem that your dog had about your son getting just a little too close to her, is that maybe she got hurt somewhere on her body and doesn't want anybody to get close to the injury, or maybe she just wasn't in the mood and still is to have your son around her. It might take her some time, but try, if it doesn't work, than do what you think is right for you, your family, and especially your son.
I am so sorry, such a sad thing to have to decide over. But I have to agree with Redye Rottie. Biting a human is a death sentence here too. I ADORE my standards, but if one of them dares to bite a human without reason other then because it was in a bad mood/out of sorts/having a bad day. I would have to put the animal down. mind you if mine bite an intruder that is a warrented act of protection. But it looks to me like your cocker bite without reason.
I am so sorry for you, but your childs safety far out weighs sentimental feelings and love for your cocker.
It seems like you know what you have to do, no matter how painful, I hope that you will be able to have the peace knowing that it is the right thing to do. The only additional advice I would give is to tell your child that you are putting your dog to sleep because it is sick. I work with children and they have a way to blame themselves for everything...if you say that the dog is gone because he bit your son, your son may feel like HE did something wrong and that you may be angry because of it.
I've got to agree. Honestly, I don't think that dog would still be in my house when I got home from the hospital with my child. I think I would have had someone else get it out of there before I returned. I realize you love you dog, and I am sorry you're in this situation, but the damage could have been worse--or could be worse if the dog decides to bite a child again. Good luck with a very difficult decision!
For the first time, I have to disagree with Red...sorry. I was looking into Keeshond dogs one day and talked to a lady at a rescue. Apparently, it was a bad day. Anyway, she told me a story about this dog that bit a child rather severely and was put to sleep. After the dog was down, when the vet was preparing to handle the dog, the vet felt something on the dog. With closer examination, they discovered a pencil shoved into the side of the dog, eraser deep. It turns out the child had stabbed the dog and the dog had bitten in self-defense.
I just feel that there may be more to the story here. Was the child EVER alone with the dog? Had the child ever stepped on the dogs tail or feet? Pulled ears? Anything? I mean, the dog is apparently growling everytime the child gets near, so why? Something must have happened to make the dog start growling at the child.
I think the dog should be sent to a rescue where his temperament can be properly evaluated and then he could possibly be rehomed to a home without children. Maybe he'll still be pts, but at least it's a chance for your dog.
This is just my opinion, and I definitely would not consider keeping the dog at all.
This is the THIRD time it's bitten someone, and the poster states that it stares at and growls at the child.
The dog should be destroyed.
Perhaps a physical is in order beforehand, but NO DOG who bit a kid in my house, or GOD FORBID my own kid, would live to see the SUN go down.
Bites in the face are designed to harm. They are NOT defensive. They are OFFENSIVE (in every sense of the word) and there is NO excuse for any dog who would bite a child in the face in such a manner as to require stitches.
I know the story about the dog with the pencil buried in it's side. The parents of that kid should have supervised better.
That in now way affects what the outcome of THIS situation should be.
ONE bite would be enough for me, and this was has had THREE strikes.
Shaunna did you really have to say it like that? Red is not being rude. I took offense to what you said and I am sure she did too. She is a very smart and knowledgeable woman...just read her posts. Anyway, I agree with Red.
SORRY SHAUNNA I THOUGHT YOU SAID AGREE. SORRY. I AM NOT TRYING TO CAUSE TROUBLE.
***Edited By: PeppersMom on 11/21/2005 4:01:30 PM*** Reason: SORRY
She's just stating another case, which is just fine.
I don't think it should affect the outcome of this one tho.
TO THE ORIGINAL POSTER:
I have had to destroy dogs for temperament before. More than I care to remember when I was doing rescue, and 2 of my own breeding.
It takes courage and guts to do the right thing.
I personally think that dogs who behave this way are mentally and emotionally miserable and damaged, and it's the same kindness one would do to a beloved pet who was terminally ill with a physical disease that could not be helped.
My deepest sympathies, both on the injury and trauma to your child, and for the emotional distress you most certainly will be facing in deciding to destroy your dog.
I've been there, and if you need to vent, I'll be listening.
I am in agreement to put my dog down due to the biting of my son. However, it doesn't make it any easier. The dog had previously bitten me, my father-in-law and now my son. She growls when our Min Pin walks by to get water. She has just become more aggressive in the past months. I have taught and raised my son to respect all things and this includes animals. My husband and I love dogs and at one point had seven of them. We have three now and my son loves all of them. When we were at the hospital after the bite he said he wasn't mad at Shelby. Today, he told me he is scared when she comes by him. It broke my heart but my son is much more important to me. I have never had a problem like this-I had a pitt bull who never bit anyone in all his ten years!!
I'm so sorry that your dog bit your son...that must be so scary for him, and you too. A little off topic, I read somewhere when a child is biten by a dog, it's recommended to buy him a book with dogs, coloring book with dogs or dog stuff animal. I think it's to help prevent the child from becoming afraid of dogs and not wanting anything to do with them. Good luck with whatever you decide. I know it's not easy. :(
***Edited By: chileanbarbie on 11/21/2005 4:32:41 PM*** Reason: typo
I know how hard this is for you. Putting a dog down is always very hard. I have been where your at and it was very hard for me as well. But human aggression will only progress. Good luck with your decision.
I agree that it is very hard to put a dog down, even after biting a child. But I also agree that it is the right thing to do.
My daughter was also bit in the face.....she didn't need stitches (thank goodness), but she had a gash in her lip and puncture wounds too close to her eye for my liking. If my husband had been home, that dog wouldn't have taken even one more breath.....but he wasn't.....and it wasn't my dog.....and the dog wasn't put to sleep.....and I DO NOT even talk to that person who I considered a friend (not because her dog bit my child, but because of the way it was handled after).
Could you live with yourself if the dog bites someone else? What if he bites a neigbor or stranger? With the sue happiness of this country, I would be concerned with that as well.
Sorry you and your family have to go through this. It is never easy to say goodbye to a family pet....but it is the right thing to do.