Author Topic: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"  (Read 12597 times)

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OSUJillyBean

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"Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« on: April 22, 2013, 02:15:10 PM »
(Was reading the dog-park and toddlers thread, which made me think of this story).

I used to work as a receptionist at a veterinary clinic.  We had a woman bring in her Labrador, a beautiful chocolate lab who was there for yearly check-up, shots, etc.  We were running a few minutes behind and she sat down on one of the benches to wait to be taken back to the exam room.  The dog sat down by her feet and was just hanging out, minding its own business.  Not scared/nervous but staying close to her owner in an unfamiliar place.

Enter Special Snowflake.  SS is here to pick up some medications for her animal as well as some pet food, which she can't be bothered to retrieve off the shelves to the left and right of my desk.  She is also gabbing nonstop on her cell phone.  I am alone at the front desk and am scurrying around to gather up her food off the shelf as well as getting her meds out of the locked med cubby.

At first I didn't notice that SS had a SS Jr. because the kid was so short I could not see her from behind our tall counter.  But I noticed the first woman (chocolate lab lady) had wrapped both arms around her dog's neck and was struggling to contain a snarling, growling, "I'm-going-to-eat-your-FACE!!" dog.  I think my jaw must have hit the desk because this little girl (~ 4) kept inching closer and closer to the dog and holding out her hand for petting.  ETA:  Survival instincts are lacking here!!! 

I ran around the counter to prevent the imminent childus-eatus and to warn SS (still on her phone and still oblivious) when one of the technicians came out from the back to take the chocolate-lab and her owner to the exam rooms.

No, SS never got off the phone to prevent her child from being devoured by Kujo the Bipolar Lab.   >:(  I rang her up as quickly as possible but had not yet built up my polite spine.  The things I wanted to say would've gotten me fired and really, I just wanted her gone.

As they were leaving, I apologized to the dog's owner and thanked her for protecting the child.  She seemed grateful and just sort of shook her head about the whole incident.  I secretly wondered if perhaps that dog would be better off muzzled, since kids apparently trigger a case of the crazies but didn't comment.

I hope that kid makes it to maturity.   ::)
« Last Edit: April 23, 2013, 03:20:06 PM by OSUJillyBean »

Twik

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2013, 02:25:05 PM »
Well, it's a combination of on-the-job training and Darwinism for the child, I guess. If she's smart and tough, she'll learn to survive on her own.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

*inviteseller

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2013, 02:31:19 PM »
Want to bet how loud mom would have screamed and threatened lawsuits?  I have an older yellow lab that is about as active as a door stop.  She is sweet and good natured, but I can no longer walk her in my neighborhood because there are a large group of kids 2 streets over (5-11) that all come running at her, screaming, then they run back, then they run to her.  I tell them if they walk up to her and talk to her she would love it (she loves kids) but when they start the screaming running stuff, her ears go back and she puts her tail between her legs and I am worried that she would snap at one of these kids when they run, touch her scream then run away.  No parents around either, but I bet I would see them all if they scared my dog and she bit one.  When someone says "does she bite?"  I tell them "she has teeth".

menley

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2013, 02:42:59 PM »
Want to bet how loud mom would have screamed and threatened lawsuits?  I have an older yellow lab that is about as active as a door stop.  She is sweet and good natured, but I can no longer walk her in my neighborhood because there are a large group of kids 2 streets over (5-11) that all come running at her, screaming, then they run back, then they run to her.  I tell them if they walk up to her and talk to her she would love it (she loves kids) but when they start the screaming running stuff, her ears go back and she puts her tail between her legs and I am worried that she would snap at one of these kids when they run, touch her scream then run away.  No parents around either, but I bet I would see them all if they scared my dog and she bit one.  When someone says "does she bite?"  I tell them "she has teeth".

This drives me NUTS. I have two dogs who think that if you're running, you want to play. Add screaming in, and the dogs get really excited / unsure / nervous. One dog is super fluffy and looks like a big teddy bear, but she's close to 50 pounds, so if she were to jump on a kid, it wouldn't go well (at a minimum, the kid would probably fall over). No matter how many times I ask parents with kids at the dog park to keep them from running at and screaming at my dogs, they don't listen. I have to quickly grab my dogs' harnesses and leash them up again... while they are in a place that they should be able to run freely. All because some parents won't teach their children how to properly approach dogs.

xanne

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2013, 02:52:15 PM »
For some reason at the vet's office, all common sense goes out the window.  Gee, what if my dog is sick, do you want your kid to bring it home to your dog?  Sometimes the children are not the worst, it is the adults with the extendable leashes.  My one dog is peeing on the floor out of fear of your dog in his space and the other is trying to protect her friend, all the while the other dog's owner is paying no attention to where her dog is going.  And those people who let their dog go see the kitty in the carrier, I can usually stop a small child from having their fingers amputated, doggy noses are fair game.

BeagleMommy

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2013, 03:11:08 PM »
The Beagle is very good with people, even overly excited people.  The vet's office is the exception.  He doesn't want to be there and clings to me like Velcro while he's in the waiting room.

I have had to stop a number of children from trying to pet him while he's in that nervous state.  We took him once because he injured his back (fell out of the bay window; beagles don't have brakes) and I nicely told the 6-year-old child in the waiting room "You can't touch him because he has a sore back and it makes him cranky".  Her mother snapped "She only wants to PET him, not hurt him".  I retorted "How would you feel if this little one had an injury and someone wanted to pat her on the head while she was scared and nervous?"  Took her a minute, but she got my point.

Eclectic Dugong

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2013, 05:09:09 PM »
Want to bet how loud mom would have screamed and threatened lawsuits?  I have an older yellow lab that is about as active as a door stop.  She is sweet and good natured, but I can no longer walk her in my neighborhood because there are a large group of kids 2 streets over (5-11) that all come running at her, screaming, then they run back, then they run to her.  I tell them if they walk up to her and talk to her she would love it (she loves kids) but when they start the screaming running stuff, her ears go back and she puts her tail between her legs and I am worried that she would snap at one of these kids when they run, touch her scream then run away.  No parents around either, but I bet I would see them all if they scared my dog and she bit one.  When someone says "does she bite?"  I tell them "she has teeth".

Regarding the bolded, that's the sad thing in such matters as this, you can ask certain people over and over not to do something that upsets or antagonises your pet but they persist under the reasoning of 'It's just a stroke' or 'They don't mind'. Until someone nearly gets hurt, and then it's the animal's or your fault for a reaction to something they were asked not to do and warned about :(

I must admit, I was so glad my sister taught my toddler nephew about how to treat pets (since they have three cats too), I have never seen someone treat a cat with such gentleness and caution. We still watched him like a hawk whenever he approached cat 3 though, one can never be too careful where animals are concerned.

*inviteseller

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2013, 05:49:43 PM »
Exactly!  I love my pets, they love me (I think) but as much as they show love, my cats also will swipe at me if I pick them up when they don't want to remove themselves from the keyboard or the couch.  Kids, whether they have pets in the home or not, should be taught early on how to approach or when not to approach animals.  The local animal shelter did a program for the pre K kids at DD's school and one boy SCREAMED everytime the dogs as much as moved.  When asked if he had been hurt by a dog, the mom said "No, I just told him if he didn't want an animal to be near him to scream".   :o :o :o

Eclectic Dugong

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2013, 06:12:47 PM »
Exactly!  I love my pets, they love me (I think) but as much as they show love, my cats also will swipe at me if I pick them up when they don't want to remove themselves from the keyboard or the couch.  Kids, whether they have pets in the home or not, should be taught early on how to approach or when not to approach animals.  The local animal shelter did a program for the pre K kids at DD's school and one boy SCREAMED everytime the dogs as much as moved.  When asked if he had been hurt by a dog, the mom said "No, I just told him if he didn't want an animal to be near him to scream".   :o :o :o

:o my flabber is gasted :o

Katana_Geldar

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2013, 06:18:11 PM »
I used to walk my parents lab a lot, and subsequently had to teach quite a lot of kids how to heave around dogs. Though most of them were very well behaved. I asked of they wanted to pat him, and if it was a yes I got him to sit and if the kids were very small I got him to lie down. He's a big gentle duffer, but big is big in kids eyes.

I'd ask them to let him sniff them, as that's how he says hello, and then they could stroke his head and maybe down his back. I found that kids were a lot less scared if I told them that the dog was going to sniff them, so it wasn't much of a surprise, and it wasn't something I could stop.he loved rough play, but was ALWAYS gentle and patient with children. It's as if he knew he needed to be.

And yes, he would seek them out and want pats from them.

And it sounds SS Mum needs to teach her child how to act around dogs. You don't just go up to a strange dog for a pat. You ask or wait to be asked.

wheeitsme

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2013, 07:31:58 PM »
I had to click on the thread because:  Eaten by a Labrador?! Which you explained by "Kujo the Bipolar Lab!"

Poor thing.  It makes you wonder WHY the Lab turned into a "snarling, growling, "I'm-going-to-eat-your-FACE!!" dog" in the presence of the kid...

VorFemme

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2013, 09:09:16 PM »
It's not just the kids.  We started taking our cats to the vet inside large plastic carriers with metal grids.  Because people would wander in with a big dog or even "just a puppy" three times the size of the cat that would run up to the carrier and start sniffing & pawing it.

The owner would explain that Rover liked to play with kitties at home (no comments on whether or not the kitties liked playing with Rover).  Our cat would usually complain about being in the carrier the entire trip, until Rover came in, then she would sit curled as small as she could, quietly cowering in the corner further from the door (and Rover) while waiting on that huge hairy beast to just go away.

If she was happy to see the vet - you have to know how terrifying Rover was (to her)!

But just because your dog is being raised with cats doesn't mean that my cat was raised with dogs......or might not find them terrifying due to being attacked when younger. 

Is Rover an SS?  No - is his owner an SS?  Quite probably.....at best, they aren't thinking about not all cats getting along with all dogs....at worst, well, I suppose "they just aren't thinking" covers a lot of it.
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Winterlight

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2013, 09:19:10 PM »
Our Rufus is a gentle dog, but he is scared to death of the vet. On a recent trip, he was trembling so hard my mother and I had to hold him steady so the vet could check him out. If a child had tried to approach him, I would have blocked them away- sweetie though he is, when he's already upset, a stranger coming at him might have made him panic.
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2013, 09:36:52 PM »
That's one reason I'm glad our vet has separate entrances for dogs and cats.  You can see over to the dog side as they're separated inside by the reception desk and a wall, but they can't get to each other.
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LadyDyani

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Re: "Excuse me, your child is about to be eaten by a Labrador!"
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2013, 10:30:07 PM »
That's one reason I'm glad our vet has separate entrances for dogs and cats.  You can see over to the dog side as they're separated inside by the reception desk and a wall, but they can't get to each other.

That is a fantastic idea. 

But which door do the rats, birds, ferrets, turtles, etc. use?
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