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G/f's dog just attacked my BC....What to do?

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There's some painful realities to deal with here. One of the things that Anna's and Mary's posts highlight for me is the immaturity, in this area at least, of your girlfriend. Admittedly, this is a tough issue, but making tough choices is what being an adult is all about.


Do you want to continue being intimate, perhaps planning a future, with some one who is unwilling to step up to the plate in regard to lives that are her responsibility? I'm not speaking just of Eko, but of her other 2 dogs and any other animal that her aggressive dog can come into contact with.


Some times we just take on too much, with the best of intentions. Admitting that and taking the right steps to correct the situation are very, very hard, but like everyone is saying, that's what comes with being a grown up.


I feel for you. I've never had to make this kind of decision, and I wish you and Eko the best.



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I've been in these situations where two dogs could not ever be together. It's a pain--who's in the house? Who's out? And unfortunately, no matter how careful you are, mistakes get made. About once a year, someone would mess up, and leave the wrong door open, and then they were at it. But they were two same-sized BCs, and we were always lucky enough to get them apart, with most of the damage done to one of the humans in the house. Eko won't have a chance.


I've also been in this situation and also with same-sized dogs. But, even with same-sized dogs, a lot of damage can occur and as Anna said, it's usually the human trying to break up the fight that gets hurt the worst.


I read all the posts about getting a behaviorist involved and such, and I agree that behaviorists can be helpful for some things. But, this is a huge, powerful dog, and a comparatively much smaller bc. I don't care how much work you do with a behaviorist and how successful at "rehabbing" this dog you may think you may be, there will ALWAYS be the chance that this dog will snap and attack Eko at some point in the future. I, for one, would never be willing to take that chance with one of my dog's lives.


It's a tough situation and I'm not sure what to advise you to do other than get yourself and your dog out of the house now. It's not safe or fair for Eko. Plus, you could be causing Eko to develop unwanted behavioral issues by making him live in that environment. What happens with the dog needs to be your girlfriend's decision. I would advise your gf, though, to contact the rescue where she adopted the dog from if she is considering euthanizing him. I know that my contract does not allow the adopter to euthanize the dog for non-emergency reasons without notifying me in writing and giving me 14 days to respond. I don't know much about how mastiff rescue works, but it's possible that they may want the dog back. This dog may be able to be placed in a home without other dogs, if it has a capable and experienced handler.

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Absolutely agree that this is your gf's responsibility, and she's not playing fair putting it off on you. BUT - somebody's gotta do something, and if you've got to be the somebody - I agree with MaryP about contacting the rescue the Rottie came from.


Many, if not most, dog-aggressive dogs are just fine with people, so I'd suggest returning him to the rescue and letting them find Cujo a home where there aren't other dogs to snack on. :rolleyes:

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Your girlfriend needs to take responsibility for her dog whether that means contacting the rescue for help, contacting the vets about euthanizing, getting a behaviorist involved AND one thing that is a definite is a full medical workup. Has the thyroid been tested? Could the dog be in some kind of pain?


I would start with the medical workup though.


Does your girlfriend no what has preceded the fights? Could it be resource guarding of something? Maybe figuring out what starts it will help figure out a solution.


Here is a story about how managing can work when done properly.


In the meantime, research the best way to manage the house properly by rotating dogs. Many people have to do this. I have a friend who had a dog (rescue - all dogs were rescues actually and all problem dogs) that started off with fighting with an older dog in the house. She called a behaviorist who basically said the rescue had to be trained to a shock collar because of how bad she was which was done and it worked. From there the rescue was entered in flyball and this dog was fine with dogs as long as there was no food around. If there was food she could go off. In time it got to the point the rescue dog was attacking constantly except when on the flyball lanes. The owner still carried the shock collar to tourneys (kept in hotel) to keep the rescue in line. All the dog had to do was wear the collar and she was a different dog. In time, the rescue and the older dog started fighting again and nothing stopped it and serious injuries were had by the older dog. The owner finally decided to manage interactions. The rescue was not out with the other dogs period. She could play flyball but that was about it. The owner made it a point that all dogs got enough attention, play time, alone time, etc... yes it is more work but it was worth it. There is nothing wrong with rotating dogs. You just have to be sure not to screw up.

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Not siding on either side, it's very personal so I sure don't feel like I'm in the position to take sides but I did want to say that some people are not capable of making the decision to put their dog down even if it might be the best choice.

I think you guys should sit down and really have a good heart to heart. If the decision is made by the 2 of you, whatever that might be, then you can both be together with whatever you decide.


My poor DH is unable to make those sorts of decisions when he's stressed, so we always make big decisions together. It makes it easier on him if he has help with the hard decisions, like life or death or even placing a dog. I find it nice that my big ol man has such a big heart that he needs help with certain things, not easy for a man to admit! Or at least not easy for mine.


Good luck with whatever you do.

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I don't think anyone is trying to lay blame with the GF or anyone else. Yes, Rskillz knew the dog might be a problem, but apparently both he and his GF hoped it would not be. And now it is. I think others have stated a legitimate concern that if the GF pushes the decisionmaking in this deal onto her BF it would likely end up causing resentment later. And that can't be a good thing for a relationship. They BOTH need to choose what to do here, to keep Eko safe and to make sure that the mastiff cross doesn't do damage to Eko or any other dog. Problem dogs are not something you can just ignore and hope the problem will go away, and unfortunately we are hearing just one side of that story, but since RSkillz has already corrected other assumptions about the situation here, I'm guessing we can assume he's being honest when he says, for example, that the GF didn't want to be around when the dogs were introduced and that she doesn't want to make a decision about her dog. Yes, RSkillz could move back out, and several folks made that suggestion as well. But assuming that these are two adults who are mature enough to make a decision to move in together, then perhaps they should also decide how to deal with a MUTUAL problem TOGETHER. If they can't decide how to deal with this situation, it doesn't bode well for any future decisionmaking together either, IMO.



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Really good advice here: Living Peaceably in a Multi-Dog Home. You should definitely read it. Even though it's written for pitbull owners, it's very definitely applicable to your situation.


I also wanted to underscore what one or two people earlier pointed out, that it is your expections for how others (the dogs, your GF) "should" behave that are part of the problem. I know you acknowledged that already, and I just wanted to commend you for that. Whenever things aren't going well in life in general, I always try to remind myself to check whether I might not be partly responsible in that way, and it usually turns out that I am. Once I realize that, I've already taken a giant step toward dealing with the problem.

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