06-30-2016, 03:12 PM
Join Date: Jun 2016
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| | Hi from Ottawa, Canada. I need advice.
Three months ago we adopted a shih tzu / poodle mix that was 5.5 years old. Her owner did not tell me very much [there was a language barrier] but she had all the medical history of care and the dog seemed happy and well cared for. She has settled into our home very well and she's truly a lovely dog. We've been learning about her and wonder about some behaviours but contact with the former owner has been lost so we're managing well. She seems very happy and we've grown to love her. She didn't seem to understand any commands like 'sit', etc. until we had a bilingual friend speak to her in French and we realized she doesn't understand English - too funny! So now we're saying commands in both English & French to try and teach her English.
Two weeks ago we had a very serious problem come up. On a family reunion picnic, 'Cookie' nipped my 19 month old grandson when he came up from behind and grabbed at her. She only has 4 teeth so the skin had a scratch but it wasn't broken. Understandably my grandson was startled and was upset and crying. My son-in-law, who has a temper problem, flew off the handle and went nuts. He had claimed his 3 year old was nipped a month ago when she was visiting us but I had been very skeptical so now he felt quite justified in screaming and swearing and pounding tables and insisting we euthenize the dog. He has since reported us to the Dept. of Health and we've been required to keep her under containment for 10 days and produce her rabies certificate.
Needless to say I am very upset about the whole thing but also confused about what to do. She obviously is fearful around toddlers [she's been great around our 6 older grandkids] so we plan to closely monitor her around children. How traumatic would it be to rehome her again? If we keep her I'm afraid my son-in-law will block or at least reduce any contact we have with his 7 children, and yet she's such a great dog I don't want to lose her. We're standing on the brim of a family breakdown and I could use some support.