|Barked: Fri May 31, '13 1:46pm PST |
I know there were a lot of heated replies on here, and I'm sorry for that, but I can assure you these are good people here. They just love dogs and want what's best for them.
But for you, as a Mother, you absolutely have to do what's best for your son. I personally don't feel that your son did anything to warrant a bite like that, as he wasn't even touching Sampson or approaching him while he was eating, etc. I babysat for my sister for the first three years of her son's life, and our Chow Chow, who was somewhat unpredictable, wasn't allowed around the baby. Bigger, moody dogs just can't be trusted around babies, and the fact that you spent so many years trying to save him is why this is so devastating for you. It will be difficult to keep Sampson away from the baby every moment for the rest of his life, however long that may be, like we did with the Chow. The baby didn't live with us, so it was much easier. But is it possible to make the guest room his "safe" room? A place where he feels secure and has his own bed, toys, water bowl, etc. ? I hate to say this, but eleven is old for a large breed dog.. I'm not sure how much more time he might have with you guys. How is he on outings? Maybe you could schedule in a few more trips to the park so he doesn't feel trapped in the guest room? Maybe more chews and bully sticks are in order to keep him occupied? These are just suggestions, as I know it hurts you to think of giving him up or putting him down..
I don't think you are a bad mother or a bad dog owner, based on how much time you've put into trying to save this dog I think you're a better dog owner than most. You already know it was a mistake to trust Sampson, so I don't understand why everyone is repeating that. You now realize you can't even allow the baby in the same room with the dog, which is so extreme considering the fact he's been with you for so many years. I understand why you wanted so much to trust him, and you felt comforted by the behaviorists bad advice. But now, the lesson has been learned, now it's just a matter of finding him a new home or making it work the way things are. Try not to be mad at Sampson.. I know that's hard, but he is a troubled dog. It was an extreme reaction, yes, but try not to look at him as a monster. He is only an animal, after all.
Putting him down is by far the worst option, and I don't believe you'd already made up your mind about that, but as a mother I feel if you made that choice as a last resort, it would not be a cruel thing to do. Not in light of what's happened. I'm wishing you the best, and I hope comfort comes to you and your family soon.
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