Dogs and safety: WWYD?

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  • 2 Post By CurlyCanadian
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Warning: very, very long.

A bit of background: last weekend, my cousin, S, came up from Southern California to visit. She has a 7 year old and 4 month old, and she stayed at my aunt's house. This is the first time she's done this on her trips home- usually she stays at her mother in law's house, who is literally across the street from my aunt, but her sister in law had a baby and they're staying there.

My aunt has two dogs that are flat out nutcases. The younger one is small and not so bad, but the older one is a boxer, has awful anxiety, and is going senile and, imo, turning violent. They've both bitten before, and the older dog snapped at me on Thanksgiving which was VERY traumatic for me- my dog mauled me last March and I had to get nearly thirty stitches. I love dogs but I am genuinely scared of this dog and my aunt and I are really close, but I have to call before I come over to make sure she puts him away.

For this reason, S asked for the dogs to not be at the house, especially with the baby. Her younger brother, D, interpreted this as making sure that the dogs were locked in his room. Predictably, S's older son, who didn't understand this, let them out, and S, who hadn't known they were at the house, threw a full on fit.

D ended up putting the dogs with his very elderly grandparents, splitting them up by house, before my sister got upset about this- the older dog should NOT have been with a couple who are very old and do not have the energy for this dog- and D moved them to his cousin's house. We didn't know about the younger dog being at our shared grandparent's house until he had been there for 2 days.

D and S's dad offered to take two days off work to look after them. What my sister said, that I agree with, is that if these dogs can't be trusted to the point where he has to take off work to look after them, should they really be keeping the dogs? He's getting old and senile and he snaps at anybody my age, including D's long time girlfriend's younger sister. D is upset because both dogs had very traumatic reactions- pooping blood, not eating- and he's upset with his sister not trusting him. (In his own words, "he's a s***head, but he's my s***head.) I feel like this would've been okay if he could've proved the dogs wouldn't get out while everyone was home, but they already did.

D totally agrees that his nephews' safety should come above all else, but he's upset about his sister making all these demands when she came home. I feel like if it's for her kid's safety she has a right to make those demands, especially if what already happened proves they wouldn't be safe.

Also not so fun: D and S putting my sister and I, who are very close to both of them, my sister especially, in the middle of all of us. We just wanted to play with the baby on Saturday and then we got dragged into all of this.
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1) The dogs need to be seen by a vet.
2)Sister (cousin? The one with the kids) needs to stay elsewhere instead of making demands to her hosts.
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This is a large cast of characters for a short story, and I'm trying to keep it straight...but it sounds like S is staying at her own mother's house? Just curious...it doesn't really matter for my response, because i really think S has a right to demand that vicious dogs be kept safely away from her young children, especially since her host/mother presumably agreed to keep the dogs away.

I wouldn't attend future holidays there if i were you. And I'd tell auntie why...because of her vicious dogs. You've been through enough dog trauma.
Amneris and Eilonwy like this.
Yes, my cousin, S, stayed at her mom's house.

I don't know if I made this clear, but S usually stays at her mother in law's house when she comes home, because of the dogs. However, S's sister in law, brother in law, and their newborn (literally two weeks old) are at that house right now, because their own house is under construction. So this is the first time S has had to deal with staying at the same house with her mom and her mom's dogs since she was a teenager.
Mod CG as of 10/18/08
Using: Suave Naturals, L'oreal Vive Pro Nutri Gloss, LA Looks Sports Gel.
"We’ll not live like this. They will try to bury us with false manifestos, inscribe us in wars against false enemies but we’ll sing songs about dying from loving the wrong cowboy and gospel; our bodies will burn in effigies of promise. I swear."

-Ibi Kaslik
Doesn't matter...her mother agreed to keep the dogs safely away and she didn't do it. S has a right to reasonable safety for herself and her children.
Amneris and murrrcat like this.
I agree with CurlyCanadian, I honestly don't think that your cousin should be making demands on her hosts, even if it is her mother. I mean, it would be nice if her mother offered, knowing what the dogs are like, but it shouldn't be an expectation. If the offer wasn't forthcoming I just wouldn't visit personally, much as I'm a dog-lover, my kids would come first.
I'm not sure pooping blood is normal, even for a stressed dog - maybe a visit to the vet would be a good idea.
3b in South Australia.
I don't think anyone should ask their hosts to remove their dogs from their own house. However, staying with your mom isn't exactly the same as staying with a "host." S can ask her mom to remove the dogs but her mom has every right to say no. If her mom says no, S has every right to either not visit or go stay in a hotel.

I wouldn't put my dogs in a kennel so someone could stay with me. My dogs aren't old but one is extremely anxious. Putting her in a kennel would severely traumatize her, as I imagine it would traumatize this older, senile dog. I won't even go into what I think about someone suggesting these dogs be put down.

I think if you don't want to be around dogs, stay away. If S doesn't want her kids around the dogs, she should stay away. When people try to draw you into their argument, say no and then stay away. Eventually D and your aunt will figure out what's important and what they need to do.
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It's her own mother and her children's grandmother, though. This is aunt's chance to see her daughter and grandchildren who live out of town. I find it really strange she's more worried about "traumatizing" her dogs than having her grandbabies potentially maimed or killed! You're worried about "traumatizing" dogs who snap at people and scare them????? I can't even fathom that kind of craziness.

No one in the family should be going to that house if the animals are that uncontrolled. If that isolates aunt or forces her to go to other peoples' houses, so be it. As to daughter and grandchildren, I guess now they know aunt places the dogs at a higher priority than them so they're going to need to stay elsewhere or have aunt visit them without the dogs or not come when the in-laws' place is not available.
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Anyone in this family heard of motels or kennels?

I will never understand why ppl keep dogs that are violent and/or crazy. Why play russian roulette w/ other ppl's safety like that? Very irresponsible and selfish IMO.

I think the situation was handled badly by the visitor, the mother and the brother. Other accommodations should have been made. Very fortunate nothing went really wrong.
3b (with 3c tendencies) on modified CG

mrspoppers - I can't see where anyone suggested the dogs be put down, I just wanted to clarify that that wasn't what I meant if you got that from my post. I just meant the poor dog's obviously not well.
3b in South Australia.
mrspoppers - I can't see where anyone suggested the dogs be put down, I just wanted to clarify that that wasn't what I meant if you got that from my post. I just meant the poor dog's obviously not well.
Originally Posted by Starmie
No, I didn't get that from you. I got that from the OP. Granted, the story was kind of hard to follow so maybe that's not what she meant by this:

if these dogs can't be trusted to the point where he has to take off work to look after them, should they really be keeping the dogs?
FWIW, I personally don't think people should have dogs that are dangerous and I wouldn't have a dog I felt was unsafe.

My point was that people can choose to do whatever they feel is best for them. While I wouldn't like the idea of not being able to see my (hypothetical) grandchildren in my own home because I have a dog that's not safe with them, someone else might make a different choice.

And just like it's up to the dog owners to decide what they want to do with their dogs to accommodate or not accommodate people coming into their home (grandchildren or otherwise), it's up to the guests to decide if it's smart to risk it.

IMO, keeping the dog locked in a bedroom should have been enough of an effort to keep the dog away from the kids. I think a 7 year old should be old enough to understand, "Don't let the dog out" or even "Don't go into other people's bedrooms when the door is closed."
Starmie likes this.
Quote:
When are women going to face the fact that they don’t know their own bodies as well as men who have heard things?

Don Langrick
Bonsai Culturist
I do think that if a dog has bitten a human unprovoked, it should be put down.

And I don't think having to lock dogs in a room is ever a good solution. Either the guests feel comfortable with the dogs in the home, or they don't. Doors can be unlocked by mistake. And after being traumatized and pissed off stuck in a locked room, the dogs might be even more aggressive.
3b (with 3c tendencies) on modified CG

Dogs live there, crazy or not. Hotel or other accommodations should have been made, unless the hosts were fully offering to put dogs elsewhere. I don't think the demands for them to send dogs elsewhere were right.
roseannadana, mrspoppers and SCG like this.
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I think this is one of those "live and learn" situations for your cousin. She asked if her Mom could keep the dogs away for the safety of her kids. Her Mom said yes, but didn't really mean it. The living situation didn't work out, thankfully no one was hurt, and now she will know to never stay with her Mother again. She'll need to plan her trips when her MIL's place is available for her or stay in a motel. It is the way it is.

I have a similar experience, only instead of dogs its accommodation of my daughter's severe nut allergy. My aunt, who I am very close to and who considers my children her grandchildren, insisted we stay with her when we visited for her daughter's wedding last summer. She was well aware of my daughter's allergy but went on to serve nuts pretty much every day while we were there, including at a large gathering. It was a nightmare and I was sooooo upset about it. We ended up moving into a hotel for the remainder of our trip. But.... she's still my aunt and I can't MAKE her accommodate my family. So sadly I won't ever stay with her again but I'm not starting any sort of feud over it. I chalk up to a lesson learned and move on.
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Dogs live there, crazy or not. Hotel or other accommodations should have been made, unless the hosts were fully offering to put dogs elsewhere. I don't think the demands for them to send dogs elsewhere were right.
Originally Posted by Spider
I agree with this. It sounds like all parties knew that the dogs were a little off when the arrangements were being made. I think that putting them in another room or out in the backyard should have been fine. No way would I send a dog that clearly has anxiety issues away to be somebody else's problem.

As a goodwill gesture, maybe the dog owners should offer to help out with the cost of a hotel room. How long are they staying?
Hropkey, what happened to your dog after you got thirty stitches? That's traumatic and I understand why are are afraid of some dogs now.

As to the issue with your family, I would never ask someone to board their dog so that I could come visit. I would stay in a hotel or change the time of my visit so that I could stay at the aunt's house across the street.

The cousin has no right to make demands on her mother's home. It's not her home it's Mom's. Why doesn't she bring the baby to your house so you can play with her?

It just seems that there were other solutions that could have been offered rather than your cousin stirring everyone up. JMHO
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