Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Lyme-Autism Connection Conference
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I would confront him with the bloody towel and ask him where the blood came from. I would ask for the truth and say no matter what the answer is, you love him and he will not be in trouble. Then, stand by your word and he will not get "punished". He could have had a bloody nose, it could be something totally explainable. Ask him directly if he hurt the dog. Ask him directly if he is cutting or self abusing himself, had a bloody nose, doing drugs, or what?
If you have seen him hurt the dog. I would do several things. I would put him on "zero tolerance" for hurting the dog immeadiately. Let him know that hurting the dog is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. He may need to be in some kind of anger management or counseling. If he is continuing after this at harming the family dog, and you witness it, consider finding a new home for the dog. I wouldn't make it like a punishment, just that you are obligated to keep the dog safe.
I would on a deeper level, find out what needs he has that aren't being met, find out what is bothering him and seek to meet his needs and find solutions. Listen to him, and act upon what he tells you. People hurt because they are hurting, so if you can soothe his hurt inside, or help him self soothe his own hurt, I think it will help take away his desire to hurt other things and people.