We had to put my dog down today - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I really don't want to get flamed for this, I'm just kind of looking for support. We had to put my dog down today, because of his behavioral issues. He has always been a high strung dog and he snapped at my son the other day. It wasn't the first time and it was pretty serious. He didn't even growl, he just reached out to bite. He's attacked two of my ducks and he just doesn't behave. We've had him since he was 4 weeks old (which could have been some of his issues). So, this was a really hard decision to make. He had just turned a year old, so he really wasn't even an old dog. I'm just sad that it turned out this way.


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#2 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 08:45 AM
 
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I am sorry you felt you needed to do this hug.gif. I assume you felt you had no other option and/or explored other options that didn't work out.


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#3 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for your kind reply. Yes, we had done what we could. And I didn't feel right re-homing him knowing that he had aggression issues. That would be on my shoulders if he attacked someone.


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#4 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 11:12 AM
 
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I am sorry for your loss.  One of my dearest friends went through a similar situation with her dog and doing everything possible took over their entire lives and the family suffered as a result - the constant stress, waiting for the other shoe to drop, etc.   The more time passed, the more at peace she became with the decision.


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#5 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 11:13 AM
 
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How heart breaking. I'm sorry you had such a tough decision. Much as we love our pets the safety of our kids comes first.

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#6 of 13 Old 03-03-2011, 12:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for the understanding, all. It was a very difficult decision. One that took months longer than it should have, really. He was starting to get more and more aggressive. I'm just glad that I finally made the final decision before something happened to one of my kids.


"We submit to the majority because we have to. But we are not compelled to call our attitude of subjection a posture of respect."
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#7 of 13 Old 03-04-2011, 06:27 AM
 
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I agree , sometimes , as horrible as it is , it is the better solution for everyone , including the animal . I am a real advocate for positive (re-)training and giving second chances , but there are situations , where you just cannot do that !

Think dog-aggressive pitbull rescue , the whole idea is revolting to me and I am not talking about a nice , social friendly one , that simply gets dumped , because it is the "wrong" breed .

Perfect example , there are thousands of wonderful pets out there , who would not attack everything in sight (I am exagerrating a bit now) , but you get the point .

Do not spend tons of resources on an obviously aggressive dog , that is already acting that way , at one year , when it is still almost a puppy .

And don´t feel bad about the part , that you got him at 4 weeks , I got my very first own dog as an adult , when she was barely 3 weeks old and she was the most perfect family dog and companion , anybody could hope for .

Sometimes , they just have issues , no matter what !


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#8 of 13 Old 03-04-2011, 06:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonttu View Post

I agree , sometimes , as horrible as it is , it is the better solution for everyone , including the animal . I am a real advocate for positive (re-)training and giving second chances , but there are situations , where you just cannot do that !

Think dog-aggressive pitbull rescue , the whole idea is revolting to me and I am not talking about a nice , social friendly one , that simply gets dumped , because it is the "wrong" breed .

Perfect example , there are thousands of wonderful pets out there , who would not attack everything in sight (I am exagerrating a bit now) , but you get the point .

Do not spend tons of resources on an obviously aggressive dog , that is already acting that way , at one year , when it is still almost a puppy .

And don´t feel bad about the part , that you got him at 4 weeks , I got my very first own dog as an adult , when she was barely 3 weeks old and she was the most perfect family dog and companion , anybody could hope for .

Sometimes , they just have issues , no matter what !


I think a lot of people who adopted Michael Vick's fighting dogs would disagree strongly with you. If someone has the money and WANTS to spend it rehabbing formerly aggressive dogs who are you to say you should go spend your money on other more worthy animals. That is the part about some people who work in shelters that disgusts me. Write off a dog immediately because why waste time on an animal that needs extra help, so irritating to hear that attitude... I have volunteered in shelter's I know they are extremely stretched at all times but a private rescue is none of your business how someone wants to spend their money.

Taking the lowest of the low in dog society, animals who have never seen a day of kindness and who are aggressive through NO fault of their own and saving their lives and giving them a chance to know what love is an admirable thing to me. Just because "so many other animals could be saved" doesn't mean the aggressive one that IS SAVED deserves it any less. Give me a break.


Ok rant done.

 

OP that was not directed at you at all. You did the best you could you did what you thought was right.

 

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#9 of 13 Old 03-04-2011, 10:31 AM
 
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Lauren , you misunderstood me , I am not in any way talking about a poor shelter dog , that has a lot of behaviour issues , because it had a traumatic life before .

I am talking about animals , that are known to have serious aggression problems ! Shelter or rescue group dogs can be and in many instances are THE most wonderful , loving and grateful companions , anybody can wish for !

And I also believe , that especially the ones on "the bottom" of the line are the ones , that really deserve a chance to get to know , what a good home and love feels like !

But a dog , that has been proven to be dog- and/or people aggressive in my opinion in many instances takes the spot of another dog , that is not , is a lot more trustworthy and could be placed in a good home . 

In most cases I would try to work out why the animal is acting the way it does , since I have seen from my own experience , that 99% of the time , there is a reason , why a dog (or any other animal for that matter) is acting a certain way , but sometimes you simply cannot rehabilitate them .

I am sure , that most of us would not want to live in the same neighbourhood with a dog , that is dangerous , whether it´s for our own safety , that of our kids or our pets !

I am not a shelter worker , I am a behaviour specialist  and I have done work with shelters and rescue groups and since living in Europe again , am working with organisations ,  that bring street dogs from southern EU countries , such as Greece or Spain , and I have not met a dog or cat from there yet  , that couldn´t be rehabilitated , but unfortunately , there are cases , when it is in the best interest of everybody to euthanize an animal . 

There is a place in Germany , where a young lady keeps pitbulls , that are so aggressive , that they can never be rehomed and some of them are so bad , that NOBODY can enter their kennel , but she refuses to put them down .

Honestly though , keeping them caged up is also not the way to go in my opinion .

Of course , everybody can spend their money as they choose , but I just think in my personal opinion , that there are people who do it , so they can say " I´m the one , who takes in these kind of dogs" .

They are probably quite rare , but they also exist and if you work in the field of animal rescue , they should be the ones , whose best interest is most important

 


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#10 of 13 Old 03-04-2011, 10:55 AM
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without totally derailing the thread I see tonttu that I did indeed misunderstand you...I think. 

I totally agree that there are some dogs that are just completely beyond rehabbing or generally due to poor breeding are just pre disposed to serious aggression and like you said there is just no amount of training that can fix something that a dog is born with.

 

I do think it is a serious stretch to say that the people who take in the aggressive dog or "damaged" dog just to say that they are the ones who help these dogs. Those dogs aren't easy at all as I'm sure you know, in fact that is an understatement, it is often a 24 hour long term commitment to helping that dog, I seriously doubt someone would take that on just so they can brag about it.

 

I just don't believe in putting down dogs to make space for "more adoptable" dogs. The problem therein lies that it all depends on the evaluator who is checking the dog out. In the States people who do the behavioral evals for dogs coming into shelters are often not even qualified to perform these types of tests. The dog has a bad day and then bam it is deemed dangerous and unadoptable and put down. This is unfortunately the norm because most non private shelter's cannot afford to rehab a dog even a little big..

 

I am so thankful there are private rescues who are willing to take on the tough cases because I really believe that those dogs deserve as much of a chance as the sweet little dog who isn't a problem in any way. 

 

 

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#11 of 13 Old 03-05-2011, 11:13 AM
 
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But that is , what I mean , it is a great thing to give the "less" adoptable ones a chance , that act a certain way , because they are so traumatized by their former life circumstances  and that , if given the right amount of care and work , will make a wonderful pet for the right person .

But there are dogs out there , that are simply beyond help and it is important , that you distinguish between one , that has a "bad" day and one , that is a ticking time bomb .

And there are many , many people out there , that spend their whole life and every minute of their time helping them , and they don´t do it for the applause , but for the love and satisfaction the animals and the success stories involved , give them . But unfortunately , I have met a few , that just do it for publicity , I don´t know , it seems like some kind of hero complex to me , and fortunately , I´ve only ever met 2 , but those two are already too much for my taste .

And the behavioral evaluations are as you agree with me , are simply a joke in many shelters . The way , a dog´s charakter is checked is sometimes downright ridiculous , that is why I would never go for , what it says on the paper coming with the dog or what the average shelter employee will tell you .

But we could write a whole book about that , I am sure !


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#12 of 13 Old 03-05-2011, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonttu View Post

But that is , what I mean , it is a great thing to give the "less" adoptable ones a chance , that act a certain way , because they are so traumatized by their former life circumstances  and that , if given the right amount of care and work , will make a wonderful pet for the right person .

But there are dogs out there , that are simply beyond help and it is important , that you distinguish between one , that has a "bad" day and one , that is a ticking time bomb .

And there are many , many people out there , that spend their whole life and every minute of their time helping them , and they don´t do it for the applause , but for the love and satisfaction the animals and the success stories involved , give them . But unfortunately , I have met a few , that just do it for publicity , I don´t know , it seems like some kind of hero complex to me , and fortunately , I´ve only ever met 2 , but those two are already too much for my taste .

And the behavioral evaluations are as you agree with me , are simply a joke in many shelters . The way , a dog´s charakter is checked is sometimes downright ridiculous , that is why I would never go for , what it says on the paper coming with the dog or what the average shelter employee will tell you .

But we could write a whole book about that , I am sure !


Ahh, ok I gotcha now. 
I think we are actually pretty much on the same page overall. I have never met a person like the two you described and I am thankful I haven't. I have known hoarders (my dad being one before I even knew what hoarding was) and those were scary enough. 

When we went to adopt our dog we didn't have a particular dog in mind we visited the shelter frequently just keeping an eye out for something we thought might be a tight fit. 

We asked about our dog and we were actively discouraged from even checking her out...Oh she's too hyper, she is out of control, she is a total mess. We have a toddler so they were not thrilled. 

Well we checked her out anyway, I was confident in my ability to discern real issues from typical shelter issues (crazy energy due to confinement, stress behaviors etc)...She was nutty but she was fine.

We actually had to argue our way into adopting her, this is me arguing with what was clearly a teenage shelter volunteer, she even said was a volunteer being told that I didn't really know what I was talking about.

Well we persisted and got her and she has turned out to be the most loving, gentle and friendly dog I have ever had from a lifetime of dog ownership. DD adores her and pup adores DD. They cuddle and play and DD hand feeds pup dinner a lot of nights. I was paranoid at first but after I watched DD literally pull pup's favorite toy out of her mouth and paws and then kiss her on the nose I knew we were fine...If we had listened to the shelter we would have missed out on a very special animal. It is very frustrating how few people who work in shelter's really understand the effect that life has on the dog's there without even getting into the reasons they were brought there in the first place!

 

Ok rant done. Tonttu I am sure we could talk for days about this subject, it is something near and dear to my heart.

 

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#13 of 13 Old 03-16-2011, 07:14 PM
 
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OP, I did something similar a few years ago.  I was pregnant with my first child, and the dog we had - Macy - was a great puppy (got her at about 8 weeks) but over time got more and more aggressive.  Dog was really aggressive when she was eating or had anything in her mouth that she wanted.  She was just downright mean - and as far as I know, she had never been mistreated.  Certainly not by my husband or myself.  We treated her great - it's like her personality just evolved and she lost control of her impulses.  

 

Anyway, there was no re-training her - as far as we were concerned.  We were a young couple who were expecting our first baby.  We didn't have the time, resources or inclination to attempt to fix whatever was this dog's problems were.  

 

When I was about seven months pregnant, I walked past the dog as she was eating and she attacked my legs in a terribly aggressive manner.  I immediately called my husband at work and told him to come home RIGHT NOW, because we were taking this dog to the pound.  Macy was a little over a year.  I couldn't take the meanness anymore, and I knew I wasn't going to risk the safety of our baby-to-be.  I sure wasn't going to try to re-home her after I knew how mean and aggressive she was.  We drove her to the pound and explained that we had to give her up, and made sure to tell the shelter worker why, so that anyone considering adopting her would know the truth.  Maybe Macy got lucky and someone came in looking to re-train an aggressive dog...?  I doubt it...she was probably put down within a few days.  


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