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Old 11-13-2013, 09:03 PM
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shadowfacedanes shadowfacedanes is offline
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If this were the first bite, my opinion would be a little less extreme that it is after a dog bites multiple times. I'm not necessarily a "one bite and it's out" fanatic, but I do believe in very closely managing a dog you know is a biter/bite risk. Regardless of breed.

I live with a bite risk dog. I don't call him a biter because with super stringent management, he's never bitten anyone. Would he? Absolutely. But I won't allow that to happen because NO ONE is allowed to handle him but Jeff or myself. He is muzzled when he is in public. He is crated when someone comes to the house. He is never exposed to things I know trigger him. He is always under my supervision - play time, potty time, all the time. Is this fun? Not really, but when you own a biter/potential biter, you do what you have to do to keep everyone safe, or you make that extremely difficult decision. Those are the only two options in my world with a biter/bite risk...and I'm not ready to choose the second option so I manage like a madwoman.

I'm not sure what your living situation is (for example, are you the only one there? Do you have roommates? Family? Others that may handle him?), but if you can't ensure that the dog is managed in a way that protects him as well as other people, I'm afraid you have a hard decision to make. I've been in those shoes, and it sucks. Best of luck to you.

~ Ditto and Corvus ~

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Old 11-13-2013, 09:19 PM
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sassafras sassafras is offline
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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
Honestly I would probably not put down a dog for a level two bite. In my experience that's a dog wanting to send a warning, not really wanton to damage. Manage the heck out of him? Yes. But I've known overstimulated dogs that have bitten and landed a level 2...

Trey could not go everywhere. He had to be managed pretty closely and wasn't allowed around visitors. I would never leave a dog like that unsupervised outside either.
Personally, this is where I land. Especially for a dog who is fearful with relatively predictable triggers but overall enjoying life. And honestly breed wouldn't play much into it for me if at all.

But I will say... I have a pretty dang high tolerance for and an ability to adhere to strict management with dogs, and I live in an adult-only household with another adult who also has a tolerance for and ability to adhere to strict management. We don't have visitors in and out or neighbors who will do things like just walk into our home or yard. So there are some factors I simply wouldn't have to contend with in making a decision about what to do. I don't think there is a strictly "right" or "wrong" decision for all contexts and home situations.

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Old 11-13-2013, 09:33 PM
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PitBullLove PitBullLove is offline
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I would see if you could get an actual one on one with a trainer-especially if you are seriously considering PTS. Some will work with you on price. One thing I know for sure is that I absolutely would not make that decision without having a trainer evaluate the dog in person first.

Are you sure it is pure fear or has he possibly learned by fear biting that he can just get you away when you are doing something he doesn't like? He has the option to duck and flee when you grab his collar but he bites instead...
Okay, I will check into that tomorrow then. Looking into a trainer and a veterinarian evalutation for medication will be my mission tomorrow.
That could perhaps be the reason. But I don't exactly "go away" because of this reason exactly. I keep hold despite getting bitten and say NO. He squirms and tries to grab hold of me again and I take him to his crate. I suppose that is me "going away" eventually. Is that the wrong way to handle it? Not sure if you can answer that question.

Are you the only one there? Do you have roommates? Family? Others that may handle him?
I do have roommates. I live with a 40 year old woman and her two sons, a 20 year old and a 15 year old. The 15 year old is very good about asking me before handling the dogs, before doing anything with the dogs. The 20 year old is not, and when he walks the dogs with me he sucks at handling the dogs. I always have him walk Bella because he lets Magnum do whatever he wants. We always walk the dogs at 10pm or later, never in the day time, because of Magnum...
The 40 year old, I am concerned because I don't think she will understand the complexity of this issue. I think she will make a mistake, and say she forgot, or that she didn't think it was this bad, etc. I don't trust her to GET really listen to what I say as far as controlling Magnum, and follow the rules ALL OF THE TIME.
(I will be moving out in Feb. though)
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Old 11-13-2013, 09:56 PM
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Sit Stay Sit Stay is offline
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I can't say for sure what I'd do in this situation, because I've never been in it.

I just wanted to say that I think a big factor would be your living situation. Do you live rurally, and is he happy at home, or do you live somewhere where you must take him out and around people every day? If it's the latter I would probably consider making that tough decision - I might feel as if it was just a matter of time before an incident would happen, even with good management. There are LOTS of people out there who are very clueless to dog body language and won't heed your warnings. Not to mention small children who simply don't know any better. Plus I imagine he would still be stressed and fearful being around strangers, even without incident. However, if he is happy at home and can be safely managed there that would be an ideal solution.

eta: I just read that you haven't seen a trainer or a vet re: possible meds. I'd strongly consider both those things, and see how it goes before any final decisions are made

Quinn - English Shepherd

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Old 11-13-2013, 10:57 PM
crazedACD crazedACD is offline
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It's hard for me to revisit this, so bear with me.

Long story short, I had a pit mix puppy I picked up at about 4 months old. I was bringing him out everywhere, stores and events and dog parks. Shortly after I got him there was a rescue fundraiser in a fenced off leash dog park, we went and he was OK running around, but also would not go up to anyone if they wanted to pet him, nor would he greet other dogs. It started escalating over the course of a month or two, he was quite stranger and dog aggressive. He was SCARY at the vet at 6 months old, like totally fractious, and to the point of relieving his bowels everywhere, ugh. He was also afraid of random things, like a big boulder, or a trash can on the sidewalk. I was working with trainers at that point, didn't get too far to correct the problem, it was more or less management. I couldn't afford the top name trainers either though. I ended up moving across the country, when I was in the hotel I went to go out the door and he slipped out, and pretty much scared the sheet out of me that he was going to maul someone. I got him back quickly, but my wheels started turning at that point.

So the house I moved into was across the street from a school, it is a rural-suburban town, but still a bit busy, I live on a main road. Dad came to visit, Finn manages to bite his hand. Grandmother comes to visit, she has no idea how close she came to a bite. And yes, I understand management and confinement, but when someone comes to stay over your house, or is over all day, and you have to let the dogs out to potty...? People don't listen. I live with my younger siblings, my brother was outside the fence in a snowsuit, Finn FLIPPED. Attacked the fence. The neighbors had a young girl that would sneak over and poke sticks through the fence at the dogs. Yeah.

So I went for an evaluation with another trainer, we were discussing management, and really...I had gotten to the point he WAS obedience trained, he didn't bark, he didn't strain to get people, but-like with this trainer, she was just quietly in the vicinity of him, and he turned, leaped at her, and got her on the upper arm (he was short, and small, <40lbs). A week later I had him euthanized, at a year old.

I believe that at another point of life, I would have been fine managing him, if I lived alone. But I live with people that don't 'get it'. And I was absolutely certain if he managed to escape out of the fence, he would actively attack someone. I couldn't live with that. He never offered to bite the people he lived with...I suspect if that was the case, he wouldn't have made it to a year.

But my dog isn't your dog, and I did try to cover all my bases before I made that decision. I wouldn't have been able to live with it if I didn't check into all my options. I still have major doubts, oh if I had done this, or that..but I made the decision that I made, and I have to live with it. It was in no way a relief to put him down, I'm probably more burdened since everytime I read something about aggression or come across a thread like this, the doubts come flooding back, and I regret the decision. Who knows what the right decision was...but it sucks to be in that situation.

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Old 11-14-2013, 01:13 AM
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Red Chrome Red Chrome is offline
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Originally Posted by PitBullLove View Post
Do you not understand your breed and where their image is in the world today?
Yes, I do. I also will do what is best for me and MY dog, no matter what breed!
Osyrius SilverChrome GTOVonMarionHaus-OFA H/E DM Free CGC DDJ RN BH
WBBs BleauChrome Lady of TheCopa-CGC STARR Naughty RockStar
The BlackChrome Executioner VonMarionHaus-Puppy Terrorist
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Old 11-14-2013, 10:26 AM
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Romy Romy is offline
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I don't have much advice, but since the collar is a trigger can you replace it with a harness in the meantime? That won't fix him, but it may make him a little safer for the people in his household at least for now.

Whatever you decide to do, there isn't any right and wrong decision here. Just hard and harder. ((((hugs))))
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Old 11-14-2013, 01:23 PM
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sillysally sillysally is offline
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Is grabbing for the collar his only trigger?

~Christina--Mom to:
Sally--8 yr old pit bull mix
Jack--6 yr old Labrador
Sadie & Runt--12 yr old calico DSHs
Pickles & Kiwi--3 yr old white winged parakeets
Yoda--1 yr old Quaker parrot
Solo--12 yr old Senegal parrot
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Old 11-14-2013, 09:44 PM
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Shakou Shakou is offline
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Originally Posted by PitBullLove View Post

He does not live in constant fear - he has a lot of fun at home, playing in the back yard. And when he is with my other dog on walks, he has a lot more confidence. However, if he goes on walks on his own, he slinks and has his tail between his legs. When he meets new people he shys away, puts his hackles up, and growls. He has done this since he was 8 weeks old...when he warms up to them, he is great with them, loves to play, etc. but if he gets scared for whatever reason - even if he is told to come when he doesn't want to come, and then his collar is grabbed, he bites. I'm pretty sure it's nothing medical...

This is just me, but if that's the case I personally wouldn't be so quick to consider euthanizing him. I'd try to manage him around people and continue working with him, maybe even get a canine psychologist involved. He doesn't sound beyond saving if you act now.

Also, I'd get a medical evaluation on him anyways. A lot of times, dogs act fearful because something is going on inside them that's causing discomfort when touched. To us, it may just look like the dog doesn't like being grabbed at, but in reality there may be a REASON for that which goes beyond simply fear. It may very well be that he is just a fearful dog, but you will never know for sure until you've had a vet rule out other possibilities.

"Ma'ii is always out there, waiting. And Ma'ii is always hungry." - Navajo proverb
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Old 11-14-2013, 09:59 PM
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Torch Torch is offline
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I like my dogs to be bombproof, regardless of breed. I would euthanize any dog that I couldn't trust or predict in 100% of situation. Bottom line. Too many good dogs out there that could make you much happier.

It sucks, it hurts, I know, but it's the right thing to do.

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