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Author Topic: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...  (Read 14019 times)

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veronaz

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #45 on: September 03, 2014, 09:16:49 PM »
Owners don't know if a dog will bite or not.  Their assurances are not a guarantee.

I've heard of and also seen attacks by "friendly" dogs who "don't bite".

OP, better to play it safe.

RooRoo

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #46 on: September 04, 2014, 03:21:49 AM »
Quote
I think that teaching the child "Ask permission first" before touching another dog and "Don't pet the dog before asking permission" is the best way--clearly communicates expectations without being so easy for a stranger to contradict.
As a dog owner, this is exactly what I want parents to teach their children. I think it is better than just "don't touch strange dogs." But teaching him "stay away from free-running dogs" is wise!
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MariaE

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #47 on: September 04, 2014, 03:36:33 AM »
Quote
I think that teaching the child "Ask permission first" before touching another dog and "Don't pet the dog before asking permission" is the best way--clearly communicates expectations without being so easy for a stranger to contradict.
As a dog owner, this is exactly what I want parents to teach their children. I think it is better than just "don't touch strange dogs." But teaching him "stay away from free-running dogs" is wise!

Agree on all accounts. Especially since you (OP) want your child not to be afraid of dogs, but rather have a healthy respect for them. "Don't touch strange dogs" can too easily turn into "Strange dogs are scary!/dangerous!".
 
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Hollanda

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #48 on: September 04, 2014, 03:57:13 AM »
I really am trying not to pass on my own fears.  What goes through my head is something like this:
 
- We are in park
- DS is running around
- Huge dog (or even midium sized dog) bounds up to DS or me and does the doggy leap
- I freeze
- I panic...dog...excitable...toddler...excitable...not good mix
- Get excitable toddler away from said excitable dog as DS becomes more excitable at "doggy!!!"
- Ask DS to come here and explain (as best I can) that it's not OK to just go and pet a dog unless we know them
- Hope that (however unlikely this seems, but I have a fear, cut me some slack lol!) the dog doesn't think "Hey, I really don't like her or her DS, I'm gonna knock them both over and then bare my teeth, growl and bite them!!"
 
I know things rarely/if ever happen that way, and being bitten by a random dog is kind of a rare thing. But I can say that the terror of being bitten by a dog (through no fault of mine, rather the fault of irresponsible dog owner) stays with you until it morphs from being scared of that particular dog, into being scared of a whole breed and then finally being terrified of most (if not all) breeds of dog!!
 
I'm working on my fears.  I know of a lovely couple who have a large-ish Alsatian (German Shepherd).  This dog is very, very soft and the owners are happy for me and DS to pet her.  She's an affectionate, older dog who won't jump, which immediately relaxes me somewhat.  I don't mind a dog that doesn't jump up or bark, but really wants to sniff me.  That doesn't actually irk me as much as this bounding, barking huge pile of doggy drool hurtling towards me with the sole intention of making me do a somersault into the nearest hedge and maiming me and DS.  Now look, I know it isn't going to happen, I am not silly, but that is why we call them irrational fears.
 
Because they're not...erm...rational! :)
 
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Gyburc

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #49 on: September 04, 2014, 05:00:27 AM »
Hollanda, I too have a fear of dogs (I posted about it in the other thread), and I don't want Little G to inherit it, so I see exactly where you are coming from. Little G is not walking yet, but I'm sure the same issue will come up for me.

In fact, something similar happened a couple of months ago when I was taking Little G out in his pushchair. We were walking through a field (public right of way) where a lot of people let their dogs run loose, and a lady was letting her golden retriever have a run about. The dog was well out of its owner's reach, when it saw me and the pushchair and immediately went into what I'd describe as defence mode - barking, making short runs at us, generally very intimidating.

The owner kept on shouting 'Don't worry, he's friendly! I don't know why he's doing this! Just keep walking!' (I have to say, hearing a dog owner say 'I don't know why he's doing this' is not reassuring). I decided to stay put, and made sure I was standing between the dog and Little G. Eventually, the owner collected her dog and leashed him, and everything was fine.

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Hollanda

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #50 on: September 04, 2014, 06:02:35 AM »
The reason behind my fear is that I was bitten at a party by a friend's mother's dog.  All I did was pick up a ball to gently back to her (outside party), after it rolled to my feet and friend's mother said "Oh just throw it back." Within a nanosecond, the dog snarled, growled and launched herself at me.  I wasn't seriously hurt, just shaken.
 
Afterwards friend's mother disclosed:
 
1. The dog was a rescue dog they had had for less than 3 months
2. The dog didn't like parties
3. The dog had recently been unwell and
4. The dog was still taking medication.
 
IMO 4 fabulous reasons *not* to take your doggy to a party full of strange people!! She was a rescue dog and it was known she had been mistreated. It could have been something in the way I went to get the ball that made her feel (wrongly) under threat...it could have been the meds...it could have been the dog was somehow in pain or feeling ill.  It doesn't matter.  What does matter is the dog was sufficiently unhappy enough to bite me.  What was to stop her doing it to a child?
 
The unfortunate footnote to this story (hence my unwillingness to allow unrestrained dogs around DS, and maybe making this a more rational fear), is the dog *did* bite and it *was* a young child (I forget the age).  Again, friend's mum (and friend!!!)made copious excuses for the dog, but the child's father (friend's mum's son in law) cut off all contact until the dog was put down as he said she was a clear danger.  The dog was put to sleep.  Then friend's mother went straight out and bought herself *another* rescue dog of the *same* breed and probably even now behaves completely irresponsibly.
 
Anyone who remembers my threads about Bridesmaid and Hen Night from Hell would be right in thining "like mother like daughter"...when I asked friend why the dog was even at the party,my friend said her mum didn't want to leave her at home all alone in case she trashed the house.  And friend's mum didn't want to miss the party as she wanted a drink.  And she was too busy drinking to keep an eye on her dog and maybe catch the subtle signs that her dog was becoming a bit distressed, that non-doggy people like me would possibly miss.
 
 
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KenveeB

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #51 on: September 04, 2014, 07:26:37 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

Hollanda

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #52 on: September 04, 2014, 07:50:08 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

It *could* be argued that dogs are allowed to do what they want, and anyone who protests is a dog-hating ogre. 
 
No.  Most parents are responsible, just as *most* dog owners are! Toddlers, however, rarely have the potential or strength in their jaws to mai, seriously injure or kill a human being.  A dog can.
 
If a responsible parent is capable of removing her toddler (capable of causing the dog alarm),m the responsible dog owner should be capable of holding dog on a short leash and ensuring the animal is not leaping up or overtly excited.
 
You get annoyed by a screaming toddler, whereas that toddler's parents are used to it...part of having a dog.  I don't only get annoyed by a leaping, running dog...I am scared of it, too, which is out of my control.   I make sure to the best of my abillity that DS is not a screaming toddler where feasibly possible, and most dog owners take the time to restrain their pets as part of a mutual respect.
 
My DS and I have as much right to use a park or sidewalk as much as you and your dog do.
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MommyPenguin

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #53 on: September 04, 2014, 08:10:21 AM »
I've struggled with this, too, Hollanda, from unrestrained dog.  Three times in a few months my oldest daughter, who was about 2, was knocked to the ground and stood on by large, unrestrained dogs.  In one case, the owner was there, but it was a boy of about 8 leading the dog on a leash and who was not strong enough to have any control whatsoever when the dog bolted at my daughter.  Another time it was an older man who did not have the dog on the leash and laughed his head off when it knocked my daughter down and stood on her chest.  All three times, she was playing at the playground, a place *intended* for children. 

She's now 7, and terrified of dogs.  That man would probably laugh scoffingly at that, too.  I try not to think how appropriate it would have been for a huge Irish wolfhound or St. Bernard to knock *him* down and stand on his chest, maybe growling with teeth a few inches from his throat for good measure, for him to get how terrifying it is when the dog is as tall as you are and has you completely vulnerable, knowing that the dog could easily kill you.  And maybe to understand why perhaps he shouldn't allow his dog to run loose at the playground.

While toddlers will sometimes run around unrestrained as well, as a PP pointed out, they don't have as much threat factor.  Furthermore, they don't have as much tendency to simply run up to any human being walk by that many dogs do.  I get that the dogs are just excited (my daughter was never bit, all those dogs were just excited to see a human), but nonetheless a dog not trained to stay on the ground and not jump up or knock a person over, or even to approach a person at a run, needs to be kept under control.
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Two Ravens

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #54 on: September 04, 2014, 08:16:16 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

Excuse me, but that is completely untrue. I too dislike badly behaved children and there has been plenty of threads addressing them. This thread is about unrestrained dogs. Just because there are ill mannered children in this world is no excuse to have bad pet owner etiquette. By all means, use the park or sidewalk, but don't let your animal approach me or my children, just like I did not allow my dog to approach other people.

You stated you don't want a dog to sniff you. If you are passing a dog on a leash on the sidewalk and the dog turns it's head to sniff you, that doesn't make the dog unrestrained, or the dog's owner negligent.

SingActDance

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #55 on: September 04, 2014, 08:28:22 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

Excuse me, but that is completely untrue. I too dislike badly behaved children and there has been plenty of threads addressing them. This thread is about unrestrained dogs. Just because there are ill mannered children in this world is no excuse to have bad pet owner etiquette. By all means, use the park or sidewalk, but don't let your animal approach me or my children, just like I did not allow my dog to approach other people.

You stated you don't want a dog to sniff you. If you are passing a dog on a leash on the sidewalk and the dog turns it's head to sniff you, that doesn't make the dog unrestrained, or the dog's owner negligent.

POD. My dog is always leashed in public, and when walking down a busy sidewalk, I shorten his leash so he is at my side. But a dog turning to sniff you is just as innocuous as a person's elbow brushing you.
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KenveeB

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #56 on: September 04, 2014, 08:33:04 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

Excuse me, but that is completely untrue. I too dislike badly behaved children and there has been plenty of threads addressing them. This thread is about unrestrained dogs. Just because there are ill mannered children in this world is no excuse to have bad pet owner etiquette. By all means, use the park or sidewalk, but don't let your animal approach me or my children, just like I did not allow my dog to approach other people.

You stated you don't want a dog to sniff you. If you are passing a dog on a leash on the sidewalk and the dog turns it's head to sniff you, that doesn't make the dog unrestrained, or the dog's owner negligent.

POD. My dog is always leashed in public, and when walking down a busy sidewalk, I shorten his leash so he is at my side. But a dog turning to sniff you is just as innocuous as a person's elbow brushing you.

Exactly. That was what bothered me most. I keep my dog leashed and beside me, but I've been screamed at that my dog is aggressive and has no place around children because we were walking three feet away and my dog turned his head to look at a woman and her kids. (Literally just look. No growling, no bared teeth, not even sniffing because we were several feet away.) Not being able to handle a dog sniffing as you walk by is placing far too much burden on the dog owner. In that case you should be the one to take active steps to avoid it.

Hollanda

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #57 on: September 04, 2014, 08:37:08 AM »
There's a world of difference between a dog "turning its head to sniff at you" and an unleashed dog running full tilt at you.
 
The first is likmely to trigger no reaction whatsoever from me.  The latter is likely to make me feel like vomiting in fear.  No, not an exaggeration.
 
Let's make this argument more simple, should we?
 
I keep my toddler under control and do my bit to teach him to respect animals (it has to be said, not just dogs but any animal has the potential to bite and cause injury); it's up to dog owners to do their bit to teach their animals basic commands, and ensure they have the ability to control them on a leash prior to ever leaving the house with them, whilst maintaining laws of the land regarding leashes and the safety of the general public.
 
Anyone who screams at a dog sniffing them, clearly has the level of phobia demanding some serious counselling and therapy.
 
(Says I who used to be that terrified of dogs I used to cross to the other side of the street to avoid one).
 
 
 
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wildkitty

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #58 on: September 04, 2014, 08:41:32 AM »
Quote from: Millionaire Maria link=topic=134934.msg3202183#msg3202183

Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Says who? Society is a sum of all parts, including the animals that are a part of our lives and families. To a lot of us, pets improve lives. Ergo, they are a part of society. I certainly don't want to be a part of any so-called society that excludes dogs. What a sad world that would be!

You don't want my dog approaching your toddler and I very much do not want your toddler running up to my dog. A toddler can't do harm, you say? I disagree.  A shrieking toddler running head first at a dog puts the dog at risk of feeling like he needs to protect himself or his owner from a seeming threat. So unrestrained toddler is bitten and my dog pays the price. People place to much trust in the fact that an out of control toddler is not a threat.

Xandraea

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Re: S/O - Keep Your Dog Away from my child...
« Reply #59 on: September 04, 2014, 09:04:09 AM »
Toddlers are members of society. Dogs are not. Dealing with unfamiliar, non threatening members of society is part of living in the world. Dealing with strange dogs should not be, although irresponsible dog owners have made it that way. Parents should not have to physically create a barrier between an unrestrained dog and a child that is walking with them. Keep your (general) dog restrained unless you are signaled by the parent that's it's okay to approach.

Trust me, I have no more desire for your unfamiliar child to come running up to me, shriek in my ears, grab my things, stomp on my feet, and all the myriad other things I've had misbehaved toddlers do than you want to have an unfamiliar dog come up. At least dogs have leash laws. Children are allowed to do whatever they want, and anyone who protests is a child-hating ogre. Dog-owners shouldn't have to create a barrier between a dog and an unrestrained child that comes running up shrieking "DOGGY!" either, but that's part of living in a world with other people. My dog and I have as much right to use a park or a sidewalk as you and your child do.

Excuse me, but that is completely untrue. I too dislike badly behaved children and there has been plenty of threads addressing them. This thread is about unrestrained dogs. Just because there are ill mannered children in this world is no excuse to have bad pet owner etiquette. By all means, use the park or sidewalk, but don't let your animal approach me or my children, just like I did not allow my dog to approach other people.

You stated you don't want a dog to sniff you. If you are passing a dog on a leash on the sidewalk and the dog turns it's head to sniff you, that doesn't make the dog unrestrained, or the dog's owner negligent.

POD. My dog is always leashed in public, and when walking down a busy sidewalk, I shorten his leash so he is at my side. But a dog turning to sniff you is just as innocuous as a person's elbow brushing you.

Actually, no, this thread is not about unrestrained dogs. This thread is about children and dogs interacting safely. The OP questioned how to clarify to dog owners that she doesn't want her child near their dog no matter how friendly they claim to be, and doesn't want her child to be afraid of dogs in general. Several good suggestions were made to be clearer in phrasing. This thread has since degenerated into an   Us vs. Them  argument, with dog-owners feeling defensive and accused. Milionaire Maria, you seem to have a hostility toward dogs in general and their owners.

Dogs should be on leash and under owner's control when in public (Except in dog parks, but verbal control must be maintained). Dogs should not be allowed to run free and approach strangers.

Children should be taught also, to not shriek and run toward any animal they are not very familiar with, and how to ask an owner for permission to pet their dog (accepting no as well), and to never approach an unknown dog running free.

Public spaces are to be shared by the public. The public includes people and their pets too. Responsibility is to be taken by all. There are designated places for each group to run free (dog park, or playground), and the other group should not interfere in those spaces. All general public places (sidewalks, walking trails), are to be used responsibly.

Animals are unpredictable sometimes, as are children. If everyone practiced proper restraint and realized not everyone out there wants to deal with their pet or their child, and acted accordingly, there wouldn't be such an Us vs. Them mentality. Just as some dogs would be fine with a child approaching slowly and offering a hand to sniff, yet panic if a child ran screaming toward them, some children who may love dogs in general would certainly (understandably) panic if a dog ran full-speed at them, and the child didn't know if the dog would stop, or tackle them, or lick them or bite them.

Neither dogs, nor children should be unrestrained. (No, I don't mean leash your child, I mean teach proper behaviour and maybe hold their hand.)

Very good posts by Hollanda and wildkitty while I was typing.


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