Regarding your column: Options for an Aggressive Dog
You really are crazy! I’m a Veterinary Technician. Don’t ever say Euthanasia is one of the options for an aggressive dog! Its not. And it shouldn’t be one of your four ridiculous so called “solutions”. I don’t hope to ever see your ridiculous scenarios in your column again. Your title of the article “Child-aggressive dog leads to tough choices” is completely unorthodox. Great, now people will think the completely wrong thoughts of a German Shepherd who shouldn’t be feared from the first place.
My 2 year old German Shepherd didn’t like smaller children but with the proper guidance and (not to mention you should have made this your first “option”) teaching the child to properly introduce themselves to a dog, she gets along great with smaller children! And my dog has been teased from the kids who go to an elementary school behind us!!
|Dog Whisperer’s “Rottweiler” Attacking A 4-Year-Old Girl In The Mall! 07/20/2011|
“Lech’s dog, which was not on a leash, dragged her along the beach.The dog bit Meeka 11 times and she had to have surgery.The Cape Argus reported last week that the dog, “D”, had been put down at a private vet chosen by Lech.Lech runs a dog training and rehabilitation centre in Camps Bay and styles himself as a “dog shaman” and “dog whisperer”.”
“Never would I have imagined that this incident could come to pass. Perhaps it could be said that I put too much trust into this animal, being unable to read his mind or question him directly, but I am wholeheartedly prepared to proceed responsibly.
Its about how you teach the dog to behave, not about putting it down.
I do get letters once in a while when a column even mentions euthanasia as one of the options for an aggressive dog, but they’re usually from animal rights loonies. This surprised me. A veterinarian technician? Where would a veterinarian technician that believed euthanasia was never an option go to school or find work for that matter?
I don’t know of any college or clinic where in a case as serious as child aggression, euthanasia is not an option. Any real professional’s training includes euthanasia when the first three of the “ridiculous options” aka training, (I’m not sure how you could have missed it but the first option was training), safety strategies and rehoming have proven impossible
Something that really struck me as odd, particularly considering you’re a vet tech with such strong opinions about euthanasia, aggression, training and aggression rehabilitation, was the bit about your own German Shepherd that didn’t like smaller children because it had “been teased from the kids who go to an elementary school behind us!!” One of the reasons dogs are euthanized for behaviour problems such as child aggression is because dog owners leave their dogs unsupervised around children. Doing so to an impressionable GSD under 2 years of age with the knowledge there is a “elementary school behind us!!” might be considered a little “crazy”. Its not exactly news that children tease dogs. A dog owner would have to be extremely inexperienced or just irresponsible to knowingly leave a more territorially driven breed like a german shepherd subjected to the whims of children in recess mode enough so that it “didn’t like smaller children.”
For those of us that have assessed child aggressive dogs it’s actions like yours which result in people thinking “the completely wrong thoughts of a German Shepherd” or any breed for that matter. Fortunately some dogs such as yours can be turned around but frankly someone that “knows” and loves German Shepherds, has a diploma as a veterinary technician and such strong opinions about euthanasia should know better. Your dog’s aggression was caused by your ignorance and neglect and to put it bluntly put children at risk.
Come out from under your cloak of anonymity and send me your contact information and I will pass it along to dog trainers, veterinarians, animal rescues and loving dog owners trying to find a solution other than euthanasia for dogs we regularly encounter that are child aggressive, as we’re not thrilled with euthanasia either and would love to have access to your magic wand.
You must have unlimited time, or more money and training ability than the resources we have to tap into so I hope you can step past criticism and step up to the plate. I’ll make some calls and have a boat load of dogs for you before the end of the day. If you are taking euthanasia off of our table we’re taking the option of saying, “No” from yours.
Have a look at the video and the articles in the sidebar.