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Your 9yo comes in crying the neighbors dog bit him...what do you do?

Just curious about how other parents react to situations like this because apparently I'm extremely laid back and open minded. When I mentioned it on my facebook my sil's reaction was, "SUE! I'll call and tell her off!" My husband was insisting I check it out with the implication that he would take them to court or something.

I did...nothing. He came in crying and told me he got bit but wouldn't show me where or talk about it. Okay... He didn't seem to be that bad off. My 8yo came in and explained what happened (he got bit on the butt). He still refused to show me so I told him it must not be that bad and to go play. He pouted. Then the 8yo mentioned she already told the mom (the owner of the dog, they live next door). I was like, "oh." Then I was like, "how did you get bit anyway since the dog is always in it's yard."
Turns out the neighbor was walking the dog and had her dd (my 8yo's best friend) on rollerblades and was distracted. My son walked by and bit/nipped him. Ah...things were starting to make sense after that. As soon as they said that the doorbell rang and I knew it was the neighbor so I talked with her for awhile.
She was freaking out and I'm like, "he's fine." he was no longer crying and was just mad and embarrassed.
My husband and sil continued to hound me over it online but after 20 minutes he was back to wrestling around with his sisters and watching TV (he refused to go back outside though, I think, because he was embarrassed over where he got bit even though his friends weren't laughing at him and were trying to coax him out).
When my husband got home he woke him up and checked it and he's fine. He just got nipped, no broken skin.
I was never worried. There was no blood and he was fine after he calmed down. I just don't freak out over this stuff and don't see a reason to ruin our relationship with our neighbors over something like this. If it was serious we would have had to figure something out with them and if it continues to happen...well, we'll deal with that at the time. Their dog normally stays in their yard (we do share a fence with them). My 8yo plays over there all the time and the dog has never tried to bite her.

I'm curious as to how others react to this stuff...would you automatically assume the worst? Would you insist the neighbors do something about their dog?

Answer Question

Asked by justanotherjen at 11:48 AM on Jan. 28, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Level 26 (28,174 Credits)
Answers (16)
  • Um yeah, I would insist that the neighbors do something with their dog.  That still depends on the situation though.  If the dog wasn't tied up or in his or her own fence, yeah, I'd have a big problem.  If my kid wandered over into the neighbors yard, my own fault.


    Answer by MrsHouston47302 at 11:51 AM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • if my son refused to show me where he was bitten, i would assume he was fine and do nothing about it. I might talk to the neighbor and see if theres anything that can be done (on my end or hers) to keep my son and the dog away from each other in the future. For whatever reason it sounds like the dog either got over excited and was trying to play with him or doesn't like him. Either way i'd try to keep them apart but thats about it.

    Answer by SolaraDarkset at 11:57 AM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • In your situation, I would have let it go. I would really depend on the situation on how I would handle it.

    Answer by nsrush83 at 12:02 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • If it were my son the 1st thing I would do is check out the bite and see how 'bad' it is and treat it. Then I would find out what happened and how he got bit. Once I had the whole story I would go and talk to the neighbor and get their version of the events and discuss the incident. After that I would decide what to do-- if the matter is small and let go, or if action needs to be taken. In a case like your son's I think you are right to just talk to the neighbor and let it go. Your son was not hurt and there is no need to blow this up into a big situation.

    Answer by MizLee at 12:15 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • 1st instinct was to go kick the dog in the jaw....but after reading all of it I think you did

    Answer by LuvMyMedic3ID at 12:21 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • I probably would have done the same thing you did. If it happened more than once I might be concerned but if it was just a little warning nip I wouldn't freak out. I doubt you sue if it was a bite that didn't even break the skin anyway.

    Answer by lilysmom2607 at 12:56 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • sounds like you did the right thing

    Answer by tiffanyv123 at 1:56 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • if my son refused to show me where he was bitten, i would assume he was fine and do nothing about it.

    Answer by notjstasocermom at 6:11 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • The first thing I would have done would have been to make my son show me where the dog bit him. Just to make sure it wasn't broken skin. Then I would have asked the neighbor if the dog was caught up with its shots. Those are 2 things I would do no matter what the circumstance. As far as ruining a relationship with the neighbors goes, I don't think asking them to control their pet is a ridiculous request. GOOD dogs usually don't bite unless they are threatened. For a dog to just bite a child for no reason at all is a big concern. Those are the types of dogs that end up getting out of control and mauling people if the owner's don't recognize the dog's unacceptable behavior. Since your son was not hurt too bad, I'd let it go. But your neighbor needs to keep a CLOSE eye on her pet...and I'd make sure she was.

    Answer by Ash9724 at 6:17 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

  • I probably would have reacted like you did. Probably assumed that my son did something to make the dog want to bite him, especially if the dog isn't known for biting. Dogs are animals, they bite when they're scared or feel threatened.

    Answer by Laura2U at 7:47 PM on Jan. 28, 2011

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