Maybe one of you readers can help me out here, because I’m at a loss. For those of you expecting something funny, today is not the day. I’m off my game. And there’s really no way I can make the following funny. My worst nightmare came true this weekend. Our dog bit our daughter. And not just a little nip. A full on bite to the face. She’s a min pin and was sitting on the couch and was therefore at eye-level with my daughter who walked over to her.
A little history:
I grew up with a lab and always considered myself to be a “big dog person,” but when I was 20 I came across a chihuahua that was being abused and more or less kidnapped the little thing. And then I was a changed person. God knows I was not responsible enough for my own dog at 20 years old, but I made it work and loved and cared for him to the best of my ability. To this day I can’t leave a room without him at my heels. He is the definition of a momma’s dog. For years I explained to him that I was capable of going to the bathroom by myself, but I gave up a long time ago. A little over a year later I was on my balcony at my apartment building and looked down to see a box of puppies. My boyfriend at the time begged me not to go down there. He knew all would be lost. Naturally, I marched right down there. One sob story later and I’m the owner of a tiny four week old min-pin that had virtually no time with its momma. But what does a 21 year old know about that? No warning bells went off in my head that this may lead to problems down the line. And even if they had there’s no telling whether I would’ve cared or not. That dog was mine and I loved her neurotic little butt to pieces. We went to puppy school and she learned commands, but she hated the other dogs. We tried dog parks but she still hated the other dogs. She was fine with my other dog and with my parent’s dog, but that seemed to be it. After awhile, I just came to terms that she was not a “dog park kind of dog.” I was just young and stupid and had no idea how to raise an animal. But she was little and therefore pretty manageable. She really is a sweet little thing. She loves to snuggle and kiss and sit in your lap. And she is ok with dogs once she gets to know them. She just needs to be introduced a few times and then she’s fine. I’ve had other roommates with dogs and we always did just fine. But she has had zero exposure to children before now. When Ava was a baby she was fine. Both dogs just sort of sniffed her and seemingly adjusted very well. They just sort of went about their business. But now Ava is 17 months old and she wants to play constantly. She chases them and pulls and tugs at them and petting is more of a smack. She’s not old enough to understand yet. The dog nipped her hand a few weeks ago and Big Daddy insisted we get rid of her before something really bad happened. But I couldn’t bear to part with her. And it was just a tiny bite. I insisted that I would keep them separated. And I did. From then on I kept a close eye on them and kept them apart the majority of the time. The dog hid from her so that part was easy. I just kept Ava distracted. But over the weekend we were at the in-laws and I was in the next room helping them with something on their computer. Next thing I know I hear screaming and crying. I run into the room to a terrible scene which I won’t describe here. We head to the emergency room but fortunately she doesn’t need stitches. And she was actually over the event withing ten minutes. But I have yet to get over it of course. Yesterday she was looking for the dog under the bed yelling “Beeeeeeeeeeee” which is what she calls her and it broke my heart, but also served as a reminder that she just can’t be told yet to leave the dog alone.
So, needless to say we had to give the dog away. She’s at my parents until we can find a home for her. I’m secretly hoping my father will come around and just keep her. I don’t think their dog is crazy about her, but its not unmanageable. I’ve had her since she was four weeks old, so she’s never known anyone else and I don’t know how she would adapt to a stranger.
Has anyone else every had to deal with something like this? I obviously can’t bring her home and risk another incident, but I can’t stop crying over her. I’m holding out hope that the rents will hang on to her until Ava is old enough to understand but I think I’m just blinded by my love for her and should start looking for a new home for her now.
If anyone has Ceasar Milan’s phone number, please pass it along, because I’m pretty sure he could send her to the pack and all will be well. I am perfectly aware that I sound insane, but I submitted a letter to him this morning. Because let’s be real here. I’m 30, I’m a mom and I love animals pretty much the same way a six year old does. So I spend a lot of Friday nights laying on the couch watching back to back episodes of the Dog Whisperer.