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Do you think I should give our old dog away?

Ok, here is the scoop.... the dog we have had for ten years is getting old and cranky... we have a crawling baby now and yesterday she snapped at the baby!! I keep trying to separate the two BUT... sometimes.. they are in the same vicinity... and I am getting afraid there might be an "incident" or "accident".... if I gave her to a good home... maybe I could avoid all of the stressful worry... I have other children and they sometimes are not as careful with the dog and her whereabouts. I have so much worry each day and so I try to put the dog out... but they won't leave her out... when I put the dog out to keep her away from the baby, they let her back in! Then, I catch her growling or see her sitting under the table or in our room near the baby toys... and I freak out that she is back in!! My hubby said to look for a good home for her and it would put my mind at ease... BUT... honestly... my mind is not at ease over this! She is a member of our home and I would HATE to see her go... and honestly so would the kiddos... I bought her a dog house.. just in case we had to leave her out sometimes in the evening or days and it rains or something... BUT.. she won't even go near the thing!!! She hates it! I feel awful! She has ALWAYS slept at the foot of my bed and on my side.. she follows me to the bathroom or anytime I am up at night with the kids....I love her dearly! Anyway- I am interested in your opinions. She is in good health.. nothing wrong with her except her grumpiness and maybe even that is attributed to the fact that she might have arthritis or something making her achey and so... then when the baby pats at her or pulls on her fur.. she snaps.


Asked by FingerPainter at 8:45 PM on Apr. 19, 2011 in Pets

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Answers (11)
  • My HONEST opinion...seperating an old dog from a family is very detrimental to the dog...period...Have you tried putting up baby gates?? I have an 85 pit bull and she is never alone with my daughter for that reason...however, we have had her for only 8 years and my daughter is 2 1/2...I don't put my pets priority over my daughter by any means, but we did commit to give them a good life and you don't know what kind of "family" he will be going to. People scope out older and weaker dogs to use as bait dogs, abuse them, beastiality, etc...these are documented cases and Im not making this up...I think giving up a senior pet is one of the worst things you can do. He would be better off, just seperated from the child when you are home and continue to hear the voices of his family and be comfortable in his surroundings...taking him out of that would be awful.

    Answer by calliesmommie at 8:49 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • Giving your dog away is no more the right answer than would be to give your kid away. Now, yes - our children come before our dog - without a doubt. But, I faced this same exact issue and was able to over come it. What you're seeing is jealousy and insecurity and it probably has a lot more to do with YOU than with your baby. You may have to do something like "give the dog the dining room" --- a place where she can be fenced off, but still in YOUR vicinity, yet the baby cannot crawl into harms way. AND you have to introduce her to the baby over and over and over again... sort of like "Doggie wants to come see mommy to get her belly rubbed?" - then mommy picks up baby and calls the dog to her -- then rubs the dogs tummy , THEN puts dogs away again. Showing hierarchy is important to the dog - it helps the dog know where her place is and to know that her place isn't lost. It's security for dog to know dog's place - get it?

    Answer by ShelbyShareAlot at 9:06 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • The dog is 10 years old do you know how hard it is to place senior dogs? Granted there are people out there that would be willing to take her(myself included) but they are few and far between. I think it is cruel to take a senior dog that has been in a family its whole life to a shelter where it will more then likely spend the rest of its days in a cage. She is probably jealous and frankly her world has changed over night. One thing I would do is have her checked out by the vet because if your baby is crawling and possably grabbed the dog she may be painful from arthritis and snapped to say "hey that hurt". I think putting up baby gates is a good idea for both of them. Your dog is actually warning the baby by snapping which of course the baby does not understand. I would much rather have a dog that gives that warning then one that just bites.

    Answer by KyliesMom5 at 9:36 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • Also, you can't expect a dog to all of a sudden want to go in a dog house when he's never been in one his whole life..he would be better in a crate INSIDE....He needs to be with his family...These situations really break my heart...i truly hope you can figure something out...bringing kids up around pets is so good for them...

    Answer by calliesmommie at 8:50 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • NO! Put the poor dog down before you uproot its whole world & everything it knows. Please don't give it away. That dog doesn't deserve that torture of not being with the people it has known & only remembers for the past 10 yrs. Good Luck Hun!

    Answer by loudnproud87 at 8:50 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • Please don't give the poor old pooch away. :( You're dealing with jealousy which is easily fixed. I would suggest putting up baby gates between rooms so the baby can't sneak up on her and she can't grab and horde the baby's toys. At the same time, make sure you give your doggy one on one time to reassure her that she hasn't been replaced.

    A very positive bonding experience would be therapy dog training. Then, after the test has been passed, take her around to nursing homes or maybe even children's wards at hospitals to visit kids or her fellow seniors. The training should also help you learn how to introduce the baby properly and help her learn how to behave when the baby is present. GL mama. :)

    Answer by MamaStuart at 11:08 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • You are going to the extremes...why?

    What you need is a place to put her when the baby is out. So set up a laundry room, or bathroom or basement area as hers. GIve her a bed and set up the baby gates as suggested. When baby is out, she is in her bed area. You can also start giving her little bits of liverwurst every time she is near you and the baby. It might change her mind. And some meds for the sore joints might also make her happier and less cranky.

    Last resort, set up a large comfortable is better than dumping her at the shelter. And at her age, she probably takes more naps too.

    Good luck!

    Answer by spottedpony at 11:50 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • Sounds like jealousy. You should set aside time for just you and the dog to let her know that you still care. Baby gates are also good for keeping her out of rooms where the baby is. Good luck.

    Answer by SpiritedWitch at 9:03 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • Don't listen to loudnproud87-don't put the dog down!!!! That is killing the dog!!! That is wrong!!! Put up baby gates!!!

    Answer by dancer at 1:08 AM on Apr. 20, 2011

  • First of all, thanks! Everyone had great suggestions. I was going to give the dog to my parents. They recently lost their dog after 15yrs. We're a dog loving family & I've owned a dog ever since I can remember being alive. Anyway- this is our 5th child... we haven't had any problems in the past with animals EVER... however... it seems this situation is stressing everyone out! The kids bring the dog in...forget to put up the in the kitchen, in the bathroom, helping with homework... whatever... then dog is in...unbeknownst to me... until I find her in the house or HEAR is starting to walk... I can see it happening any day will just get MORE stressful to keep baby safe. I am thinking of the best possible scenario for everyone... other than a yelling... upset, stressed out momma where the poor baby & our sweet loving doggie have no idea why I've become crazy lady...! :)

    Comment by FingerPainter (original poster) at 1:46 PM on Apr. 20, 2011