My son is mixing dogs with very young children and I am concerned


Well-known Member
How unfortunate about the dog biting your child, @StarSong! This reminds me that a dog, like a human, may suddenly become confused or "snap" however rare it is in a breed engineered for gentleness. They, like us, are all predators after all.

Interesting about Duke. I guess that boy is just a sweet, fickle wanderer at heart.
The dog was always jealous of our daughter but had never been aggressive toward her. Until she was. I consulted a dog trainer who advised me to put her down. He said a dog who would bite a baby without provocation couldn't ever be trusted around small children again.

We were the ones who had Duke fixed and he was at least 4-5 years old at the time. He wandered to the factory, to us, and then to the gent a few streets over. As far as I could tell that remained his final home. We'd see them walking now and then through the years.


Senior Member
I love dogs. The only one I've ever had a problem with is one of them that lives across the street. I'm sure it was beaten before the neighbors got it. Dogs that are "mixed" breeds have less problems than those who have been bred to be a certain way. Genetic variation is a good thing for the animals health on all levels. A good show to watch is Too Cute on the Animal Planet. It provides good information. Plus it's an adorable show.
I'm a cat person. But I understand that certain dogs are very little kid friendly. Years ago, my brother had a huge German Shepard and two little kids.. He could let the kids play outside alone. As soon a boy would venture too far, the dog would go get him and haul him back. The breeding thing- ah I dunno. My ex-neighbor was a breeder. He and his father had an impeccable reputation. They only had a litter every two years, which I guess is admirable to dog people. The dogs sold for thousands. But things went sour-in debt, a pending divorce. He began to overbreed the dogs. Unfortunately people treat animals differently if they're pets or meal tickets. He was turned into animal control.


Well-known Member
I love dogs, have always loved dogs. But if a dog bit someone, on purpose, I would have it put down. The dog bites that can occur when playing too rough don’t count, those are accidental. These bites happen during tug a war play etc. when the dog miscalculates where a hand is.


Senior Member
Manitoba, Canada
I am very strong in these thoughts.
Puppys are nice, but they grow.
Is the pet going to be home alone while all are out to work, school etc.
Will they be crated all day.
What kind of house training will be done if no one is home all day.
Love, training, quality time with them cannot be squeezed in only a couple of hours a day.
Would you do these things with your own child.
Far to often, the novelty wears off, behaviour problems will develop.......NOT the DOGS FAULT.
Then what happens.....there's many directions their futures can go.......But......far to many times, these 4 pawed bundles of unconditional love, pay a very high price.
If a person can't commit 200%.......don't chose to have a pet.


Senior Member
A week or so ago my son announced he and his wife were getting a puppy. I wasn't ecstatic but the puppy they got, a female eski-doodle, was under six months old. Their children are 1 and 3 years old. I merely told him to get lots of puppy pads and chew toys and don't end up tying her to a box outside somewhere. He said she would be in the house and yes they are planning on getting her spayed. Good.

Today my son sent a SnapChat regarding another dog they brought home. This one is about six months old and a male labra-doodle. I asked if they were thinking of breeding them. He said he wasn't sure yet. I worked at the Humane Society and this is a big no-no. I believe they are looking at the money they might collect rather than the work involved in raising pups. This is a big disappointment for me.

That's one thing. The other is their kids being so young. Granted when I was raising kids we had a dog, but I was home all day. I was there when I looked out the window and saw the dog walking funny. She was low down and moving very slowly. Turned out she was stalking the same kid I'm talking about above. He was around 3 at the time. Before I got out the door, the dog had him down on the ground already. The kid wasn't doing anything to the dog, he was just walking around. This particular dog was a sweet, gentle dog otherwise. I got there before she did any damage, so thank God for that, but both my son and his wife work. What are they doing getting two dogs and thinking of running a breeding business? You get one, see how things go before you add another. SMH.

I was honest and told him what I thought. Told him to please get them both fixed, told him about what happened when he was a 3-year-old, told him dogs are nice but they are wolves at heart. Don't want to be too much of a busy-body, probably already crossed that line, but man my heart aches after seeing how many dogs end up at the animal shelter or tied to a dog box behind the house. I noticed lately the number is down at the Humane Society and that could be good or bad. It could be people are at home more and taking care of their pets, or they are getting rid of them and more are being euthanized. Really bugs me. Ah what can ya do. Hope for the best I guess. Damn kid.
My parents had dogs on the farm when we were small children, and one almost all white crossbred dog funnily enough called Judy used to be allowed in the house, and any of us could jump on her and she'd never mind a bit.

Another pure bred collie kept exclusively outside called Suzy was a bit more circumspect about us children messing with her, but could be stroked well enough, "but just stop there", if you know what I mean.

I do agree with your concerns however, and it is a very different thing when you're there all the time. A brilliant collie do my parents bought after Judy passed on, and we were all older children by then was great with us, but I did once witness her looking unsettled or even growling at a smaller child coming too close, (and some say dogs don't like it sometimes because a small child is at their height).

Then there are all the possible worries about infections that can cross to the child, ("toxacara canis", springs to mind), so I can accept your comments as I've said, and yet many parents of young children do choose to have dogs, and the kids will love them being there in most instances.
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Senior Member
Manitoba, Canada
My previous post, my thoughts, doesn't point to dogs only.
Cats can quite experience the same......but seemingly because of their evolution......some solitude is part of their being.
You do see abandonment with feline as well.......something no pet deserves.

Then there are birds, reptiles, snakes, hamsters etc, whether those experience the same issues......i really don't......but i think the issues again would be tracked back to Pet Parents, not those of the innocent.

Of all the dogs i've had......had to take part in an interview, and a questionnaire, and if can, produce lifestyle plan for your addition to the family.
Was lucky enough, to be accepted for a dog parent.
Went through this 6 times, to get my 6 family members......from 1990 to 2017.
Never regretted the's what's best for the new family member.


For the past couple of years we've toyed with getting a second dog. When going through the petfinder and other listings, the overwhelming number of available dogs are pit bulls, German shepherds, rottweilers and mixes thereof. Homeowner's insurance policy won't cover them if there's an incident, which tells me that these breeds have more serious, reportable incidents than most.

It's truly sad to see photo after photo of these (mostly) unadoptable animals.

Many years ago we were on the couch watching TV, our first child sitting quietly on the floor in front of us. Completely unprovoked, our 6 year old cockapoo raced across the room and bit her in the face. An 8 month old baby had to get stitches on her upper cheek. Dog was put down (which I took some sh!! for from a couple of friends). It was a terrible experience.

Not too long after, a beautiful, extraordinarily gentle golden retriever started hanging around our place. He belonged to no one, it seemed. (The days before chipping.) We traced him to a local factory; the employees said that they fed him every day but nobody there owned him. We adopted him and had him about four years but he was a wanderer (yes, he'd been fixed). By the time I had three little kids I could no longer organize chasing him when he escaped.

One day he got out and I just let him go. About a week later we're driving a couple of streets over and see a man in his 60s walking Duke on a leash. The kids got so excited and wanted me to reclaim him. I said, "No. He's where he needs to be now. He was with our family when we needed him and he needed us. He's found another person who needs him and who he needs."

p.s. I'm not attacking any particular breeds. I've had several wonderful, gentle German shepherd mixes as part of my family.
StarSong as a rescue worker I appreciate that you are willing to adopt a dog off of Petfinders. The perfect dog will come along. I am so very sorry about your experience with your cockapoo. But I can tell you that I am a retired professional dog groomer, and cocker spaniels were among the most unpredictable breeds that I worked with all those years. Cocker mixes no exception. BTW I love what you told your kids when they saw the golden retriever that was once in your family. You gave them such a loving perspective.


Well-known Member
Thank you @deesierra. I'm sorry to say that these days it's dismayingly difficult to adopt through rescue organizations - they've become ridiculously suspicious about motives, and their requirements are over the top.

My son & DIL had to jump through a crazy amount of hoops to adopt a dog this past summer. Eventually they went through someone who raises funds for a rescue organization (an org that had already snubbed them). They have a home on 1/2 acre, a fenced yard, she works part-time, the dog would be kept mostly inside, and always inside at night or when they weren't home. They were both raised with dogs in the home, and there is plenty of local family for backup.

They were put through the third degree because the dog would sometimes be left alone when they went to work. (Ummm.... It's a dog, not an infant child.) I cannot imagine the tortured adoption journey for people over 60.

Their friend hooked them up with a pair of dogs that had been looking for a forever home for two years. The dogs are thriving and everyone is happy. Had Gloria not vouched for them and greased the wheels, those dogs would still be in a foster home (with 7 other dogs) and my son & DIL would likely have given up on rescues and gone to a breeder.

We'll probably start out with our local animal shelter, and also ask our vet (30 year relationship) and groomer (13 years) about dogs they know who need new homes. I'm sure both would give us strong recommendations.

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