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What do I do with a dog who has bitten my child twice?

I have a 10 month old lab mix, Sara. We have had her since she was 6 wks old, she has been wonderful with our 2 children (5 yrs & 2 yrs old). However, there have been 2 occasions when Sara has "snapped" at our youngest child. The first time, Sara bit my daughter's hand when she tried to grab her dog bowl during feeding. The bite was not bad, but it did break the skin. Then, yesterday I brought Sara home from the vet after being spayed. She was fine, other then being sluggish. My daughter attempted to pet Sara while she was napping. I believe it startled her; She growled, barked and bit down on her wrist. I told her to stop and she immediately did. Both instances, the dog bit down and released immediately. I don't know what to do. The kids do love the dog, but I don't want there to be a third time & it be worse.

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Asked by BBPddin at 10:56 AM on Jun. 26, 2009 in Pets

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Answers (39)
  • you really want to risk a bite to the face? They can leave unrepairable damage! someone else will love the dog as much as your kids.

    Answer by missv66 at 11:01 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • start taking the food and sticking your hand in the dogs food bowl to get her used to it, then once shes good with you take the baby and yourself and do it with the baby, and if she snaps smack her on the nose hard. so she learns to not do it, the day i brought my puppy home i took my dd and i put my hands in her food and did the same with my daughter. she can now stick her face in the puppys food bowl and shes fine, when the baby pets the dog you pet her too and tell her its ok be nice, the baby wants to love you whatever that way the dog feels secure with her. if my dog ever bites my child though its gone. first bite, but if you want to try those things might help. theyre worth a shot if you want to keep the dog.. or pay for a trainer. or go to a pet store and ask them what they can suggest or call the vet and ask them for some helpful suggestions.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:01 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • you could enroll her in dog training, issues like the bowl thing can be resolved. That could be the dogs personality or just her being young still. As far as the dog post spay, she was probably not feeling the best and just like a person dogs have moods, and the dog could have also been worried that your child was going to touch its wound, so the dog should have been seperated until she was feeling better, because after surgery she was just to vulnerable.

    Answer by nellyb118 at 11:03 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • If the dog has bit the same child twice it is almost inevitable it will bite the same child again. Regardless the dog would be gone. We have had dogs...well, always. I did have to get rid of a cocker spaniel once. She walked in front of my son who was laying on the floor watching Tv. As she walked by he reached up and stroked her back.. She turned and bit him in the face. We were all sitting there when it happened. She didn't get a second chance. My child is almost 23 and carries a scar to this day.

    Answer by GrnEyedGrandma at 11:04 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • Call Cesar Milan, "The Dog Whisperer"! He even has a website where you can get advice. Seriously... he's one of the best dog trainers I've ever seen and he knows how to handle the kind of aggression you're talking about. Your dog's behavior is completely treatable with proper training of both the dog and your family.

    Answer by Intrepid at 11:06 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • The dog NEEDS to go! No question! Get it out of the house immediately! Find it a new home if you wish, but specify that it can NOT go to a home with small children. I WILL NOT TOLERATE ANY DOG THAT BITES A CHILD PERIOD! Don't misunderstand, I am an animal love and have 4 dogs, 2 large, 2 small, however, we have had dogs in the past that have been too nervous around our kids or what ever and bitten them it is not tolerated and I personally have not bothered to find them a new home. My son is missing a piece of his ear because of dog bite, he was 5 when it happened (on Christmas Day) and is 18 now. He will always carry that scar and will never regrow his ear. The dog was put down as we were on our way to the ER. Don't allow your child to wind up there.

    Answer by kustomkrochet at 11:11 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • The dog needs to go to a home with no children.


    Answer by Anonymous at 11:24 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • I would have a really hard time keeping that dog with little ones around. On the other hand I know how difficult it would be to give the dog away, but my kids are above all in my book. I think I would start looking into maybe giving the dog to a home that has older children or a home with adults only.

    Answer by thenewmum at 11:24 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • I would have killed the damn dog. I don't tolerate biting of my kids. If someone were breaking in or threatining my family and the dog bit, that would be one thing, but biting one of my kids is not something I would deal with at all. I would have a hard time re-homing an animal that has a proven tendancy to bite. I can't see endangering others.

    Answer by Seana1 at 11:47 AM on Jun. 26, 2009

  • I had one put down for the same reason. Don't play around with will get worse.

    Answer by ColleenF30 at 12:00 PM on Jun. 26, 2009

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