GREAT CONCERN

Sharlene - posted on 10/14/2011 ( 203 moms have responded )

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Hi there sharlene here I HAVE GREAT CONCERN ABOUT MY HUSBAND DOG THAT IS A STAFFY SHES ATTACK ME TWICE AND NIBBLE ON BY DAYUGHTERS EAR AND ATTACKS BY SON .THERE FATHER SAYS SHES JUST PLAYING BUT I DONT SEE THAT PLAYING .iS THERE ANYONE OUT THERE THAT HAS A STAFFY AS A PET PLEASE TELL ME OR STORY. MOTHER OF GREAT CONCERN!!!!

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Jane - posted on 10/14/2011

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The dog needs training. In my experience, bully-type dogs, including Staffordshire terriers or "Staffys," have no idea how strong they are so they need to be taught what is acceptable behavior and what isn't. They are selectively bred to want to do what their owners ask, and so are very amenable to training but if they don't see that there are rules they will step in and make up their own. They do tend to be aggressive towards those they consider to be below them in status, so again, they need to be taught what their rank is in the family. I suggest that the dog go to training ASAP and that you and your husband also be trained how to train a dog. In addition, your children should be taught how to behave around a dog, and neither child should ever be left alone with the dog.

I have a pitbull-yellowlab mix, a pit-bull-English bulldog mix, and 2 American Bulldogs. None of my dogs will attack a member of the household, but they all went to an intensive form of training called "boot camp," and I also have taken classes on how to work with and train muscular, independent dogs.

Tammy - posted on 10/14/2011

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This may sound harsh but it's not about what you want, it's what is best for your children. If the dog gets too aggressive one day or one of the kids bothers the dog when it's trying to eat and ends up getting bit, god forbid in the face, it would be devastating. I know as well as anyone that animals are members of our family but you have to protect your kids. If you have any hesitations about the dog you have a duty to keep him away from the kids until he is evaluated for aggressiveness, trained, or given away to a rescue.

Jane - posted on 10/14/2011

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Sharlene - You have been told what to do: get both the dog trained as well as the members of the family, or find a new home with someone who can cope with the dog. She is still young at 20 months so she can learn readily, but she is large enough and energetic enough to cause injury whether accidental or not. And once someone gets hurt, the dog becomes classified as a dangerous dog, even though it may not have been her fault at all. And "dangerous" dogs become liabilities and so are killed.

If you can't tell whether a dog is playing or attacking, then you don't know enough to have this dog. You can attempt to learn what you need to know to be able to communicate with the dog, or you can give the dog to someone who already knows.

BTW, there are clear signs that experienced dog trainers know that can make it clear what the dog is doing, such as how the dog is holding its ears, its lips, and its tail, what sounds the dog is making, whether the fur along his neck and spine is flat or erect, and more. If you don't know these signs then you need training as much as or more than the dog.

You say you don't want to get rid of the dog. If that is true, then GET A TRAINER, work with the dog and the trainer until you understand how to communicate to the dog what her place in the family is, and what is acceptable behavior.

And never, ever leave the dog alone with the kids.

Jane - posted on 10/14/2011

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It is playing, but it is too rough. If she were attacking, someone would be badly hurt and bleeding.

She needs to learn that you guys are not fellow Staffys and that she needs to be gentle. She can learn and she will be happy to learn, but first you and your husband need to learn how to teach her. Yelling at her and pushing her won't do it.

If you want to have a strong breed like Staffordshire Terrier, you need to find a trainer to work with. That is something you two need to do ASAP before someone gets hurt by accident an your poor dog gets labeled as "aggressive."

Maria - posted on 10/16/2011

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You're right, there is a difference between an adult dog with an energy of a puppy and a puppy.

That being said, this dog is a puppy still. Don't confuse size with mental maturation ;)

I have 2 Staffies now and they each matured at different times, but at around 2 years old.

Tammy, I don't think we are missing the point here. Of course the safety of the children is the FIRST CONCERN.

Bully breeds generally get a bad rap for just being a "Bully Breed". It's important to note that the issues here are DOG OWNERSHIP ISSUES...NOT BREED ISSUES.

As an owner of Bully breeds, including Staffies & Pit Bulls, I OFTEN encounter "helpful advice" regarding these dogs that is based in ignorance. People fear these breeds and automatically assume they are aggressive and not good family pets. I used to think the same thing because of general societal attitudes and bad news reporting. I did my research and became a breed ambassador to try to help try change the misconceptions.

NO breed of dog should be left alone with children, especially small children. ALL dogs should be taught how to be good canine companions.

*Their behavior or misbehavior (like your kids' behavior) is a direct reflection of the amount of time and energy you put into teaching them how to behave.*

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203 Comments

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Katrina - posted on 10/18/2011

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That's a good point that overcaution can also be a problem. Our pup Ruben, 5 months old now, ia boisterous, and I see plenty of mothers shriek and clutch their children when he bounces toward them, long before he could actually be in a postion to DO anything (like jump). This even though he is shoulder-to-waist with a seven year old. One once said something nasty to me and I pointed out that she had brought her child into an area clearly labeled a loose-dog area (big signs) instead of to the adjacent no-dogs area and that my puppy had, n fact, not actually come within five meters of her kid. It is unfortunately true that some people do need to get a grip.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/18/2011

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Katrina, I can see where that got confused. I meant the OP's dog though.



What cracks me up is my MIL is concerned that my older BIL's dog will jump on my daughters. The dog is medium sized (Boxer, lab and something else mix) but is 12 years old and arthritic. I can't see her jumping on anyone. Yet she insists on keeping the dog in the backyard or in a room with the door closed

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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Katrina, in your situation, I would have done the exact same thing. It is extremely hard giving up a pet, and yes I agree that sometimes that is the safest thing to do for your family. But when a dog is over zealous and has not been trained to act properly, it is still different than straight out aggression. From what Sharlene has described, it just sounds like a dog not being properly trained...THAT can hopefully be helped. If not, (and I said this earlier in the thread) if she tries everything, and nothing works, then indeed it is time to find a new home. OR if she is unwilling to attempt (which she has stated several times she is looking for a trainer) training, then yes, it is time to find another home.

Katrina - posted on 10/18/2011

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I am sorry! These things go so much better when we can see faces and hear tones of voice. My mistake.Since the dog I dealt with technically falls under the latter category (jumping about not meaning to be aggressive) I mistook your post as meaning other than you did. Sorry about that.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/18/2011

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I know you said that and i was agreeing with you.

Katrina - posted on 10/18/2011

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And I apologize for all the typos. It's getting late over here and I've had a long day but that's no excuse for not self-editing.

Katrina - posted on 10/18/2011

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I did say that. I have said repeatedly that she should get the dog into professional training and do the personal work necessary to train the dog and integrate it into the family. She's had the dog from a puppy. Only if sh eis not will or able to put in the time, work, and money necessary should she rehome. MY dog was adopted by me an dmy family at 18 months of age under circumstances that I would not wish on anyone. The owner killed himself, and in her well-meaning but misguided attempts to rehome him the sister of the owner lied to us about his background, so we were not prepared for a dog with no training, no bite inhibition, and severe issues due to being shut out of the house by the timid wife-and-then-widow for most of every day for over half of his life. The work it would have taken to make him safe for my family would have meant thousands of Euros we did not have, hundreds of hours we instead needed to spend at work, and never, ever leaving him alone with our son... we felt it was safer for our child and better for the dog if he was sent to less confusing, more redictable, and also PROFESSIONAL surroundings. I am keeping tabs on his progress. I do miss him. But he did put me in the hospital and I have a seven year old. I am NOT saying this situation in any way mirrors the originalposter's-- but it could eventually turn into that if steps aren't taken NOW. They were not with the other do, my dog. I loved that dog. But it was best for everyone to move him on to a more appropriate situation. For the record, my skin was only broken on my back and my hip, and that shallowly but I have some purty scars. The real damage was crush injuries to the muscles in my left arm. It might ever be right again, and I can't expect it to be even close to OK for at least a year. But the dog didn't mean to. He was expressing frustration. But nobody had ever taught him how to do that safely.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/18/2011

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If a dog is biting and breaking the skin and becoming overly territorial towards its food and personal space, then yes the safety of you and your family do come first. Those are signs of aggression. But if a dog is just jumping around on you, the kids or on furniture and generally being a pain in the ass like this dog and my SIL's dog are then you should try to retrain the dog or train it in the first place.

Katrina - posted on 10/18/2011

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When children are involved some of the lengths we might have gone to to rehabilitate or build up a dog might have to be regretfully set aside and the dog rehomed. I have no idea if Sharleen's dog is at this point; only she and her PROFESSIONAL TRAINER who needs to be involved immediately can make that decision. I would have probably stuck with that dog I've been on about longer and more intensively if there wasn't a child involved, even if he did put me in the hospital. It wasn't HIS fault people ruined him. But I had to choose my child's safety over the dog's integration into my household, and he is in a good place now, and when the behaviorists there are done with him they'll find him a good home without children. Cost me an arm and a leg to get him in there, too, an dthey made an exception for me and jumped him up the waiting list BECAUSE there was a child involved.

[deleted account]

I have owned many dogs, cats also and yes, I loved them dearly. But I love my kids more. I've worked with animal rescues and have seen too many just kicked to the curb that were an inconvenience, so it's not something I recommend lightly. I also never said to throw the dog away. My previous post recommended providing it with another. Again, we are going to have to agree to disagree.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/18/2011

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Ma'am I never said I was putting a dog before a child, I said that first you should try to do something for the dog before making a final decision. I feel you just don't understand what is being said here. Of course you don't lock the children in their room, you supervise the dog with the children.



You obviously don't own any dogs either, these aren't agressive tendancies this is a sign that the dog doesn't know that it's being rough with people and needs some training. The training should include socialization with people including children.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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Well Kathy, we are not talking about a dog that is completely out of control and attacking everyone who approaches it. Right now, what Sharlene is dealing with, is a dog that is full grown with no obedience training what so ever. During the training process, making sure she take proper precaution during the monitored interaction between her children and the dog is most necessary. Keeping them apart, will actually MAKE for an aggressive situation. The dog has no manners, but it is not a broken dog. Once she has trained the dog fully, gotten it spayed, these things can greatly alter behavior. But not even giving the dog a chance, and throwing it away, is not exactly fair to a dog that has never been given a shot in the first place.

Truly? You just may not be a dog person, and may not understand what many of us feel about our pets. They are not just pets, but truly a part of the family. It is not putting the dog first, it is giving it the opportunity to change.

[deleted account]

Of course I wouldn't just toss my CHILD into the street...that's an absurd comparison. While you are working on training an animal that has already shown it's self to have aggressive tendencies, are you going to lock your kid up in his/her room? And what do you do if/when the dog seriously injures a child, who may be defenseless. We will have to agree to disagree about this, but I think it is terribly irresponsible for this dog to remain in the home. Give it to someone who is in a position to have it in a home where it's not going to hurt someone. I can't believe anyone would put their dog before the child they gave birth too.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/18/2011

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Kathy, yes I (with my name above the post) did compair dogs to children because in my family we do consider our pets to be like family. My brother and SIL have a pit mix and a German Shepard boxer mix along with their 2 month old son. The Shep/boxer mix is a bit wild, but my brother and SIL are taking the time to train him because he's a part of their family.

That's what I was trying to say, I guess you didn't understand that at first you try to help the dog learn to behaive. You don't just automatically get rid of something, you try to make it work first.

It's the same thing if one of your older children is acting out later in life. You don't just toss your child out onto the street, first you try to figure out why your child is acting out and talk to him or her.

[deleted account]

You are comparing a dog to a child???? OMG! You have got to be kidding me. No, I wouldn't get rid of a child, but remember, this is a DOG we are talking about! Who's welfare is more important, the child's or the dogs? And yes, I agree that dogs CAN be valuable members of a family, but when the HUMAN member of the family is in danger, the dog leaves.

Krista - posted on 10/18/2011

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Quit the bickering, ladies. Leah, any person in any thread is free to respond to any other respondent's comments, and any person in a community can respond to any post. That's just how it works here.



Krista

WTCOM Moderator

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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Sooooo....if you are going to get all pissy every time you see me comment....then either don't....or ignore me. If you don't want me to possibly comment on a post you have made....then once again, either don't post....or ignore me. I have done nothing wrong, yet you take offense at everything I say. Not really my problem. Have a nice day, I am done talking with you.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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Leah, "it has nothing to do with the breed... " Um.....yeah...this is your quote...simply saying it doesn't matter what breed it is. SOOOOO........really, if we are going with YOUR standards, you contradict yourself with this very next statement "I would never respond to a post about a yorkie, or a poodle, or a beagle, cause I dont own one, so therefore dont know the specifics about THAT breed. She asked for specific information about a specific breed , by owners of that dog breed, that KNOW that dog breed... "

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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Yup, and I have WORKED with this breed and many others for 10 yrs. Any post is open for ALL comments when people have any pertinent information or advice....or well even if you don't. You want to try to dictate which threads I can talk in now? LOL.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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You are always so pleasant. You can question my knowledge if animals all you want. Frankly, I don't have anything to prove to you. If I DID write large breed, oops. It is a Medium size breed, and that is why I have been sticking to my guns so strongly that this is a full grown dog, with puppy behaviors.

[deleted account]

sharlenes original request was pretty specific...she asked for "ANYONE OUT THERE THAT HAS A STAFFY AS A PET PLEASE TELL ME OR STORY." to contact her...I did... I would never respond to a post about a yorkie, or a poodle, or a beagle, cause I dont own one, so therefore dont know the specifics about THAT breed. She asked for specific information about a specific breed , by owners of that dog breed, that KNOW that dog breed...

[deleted account]

marina considering you called it a large breed dog, not sure how much knowledge you have... and would you please stop responding to my messages... im not talking to, or about, you.... thank you.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 10/18/2011

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MANY of the people in here DO know the breed, and we are all recommending the same thing, training, proper socialization, and spaying her. Really good luck Sharlene, I hope you find your trainer soon! Talk to your vet to get her in for a spay consult first, then call up a trainer, and let them know when you will have her spayed so they can set up the training time accordingly. You do not want her going in for a spay during her training, because of recovery time....and you do not want her in training to soon after she gets spayed. Also, you are going to need to update her on her vaccinations if she is not already. That will be required for surgery, and for having her in a training course. If you can, get the vaccinations done the day you go in for your surgery consult. Sometimes getting to many vaccinations the day of their surgery is to much for their bodies to handle. Just so you know, I have been a vet tech for 10 years, so if you have any questions concerning vaccinations, or the spay surgical procedure, feel free to ask.

[deleted account]

Sharlene I am also an aussie (tho I live in the US) and we OWN a staffy- 3.5 year old pure bred boy...seriously all she needs is training and socialisation...if she was really 'attacking' you, you would require hospitalization...the fact that she hasnt broken the skin shows that she thinks that it is a game... There are a LOT of people who are responding to this post who dont know the breed or their temprament...Please get her trained and socialised and you will have a wonderful, loving and gentle family member... as for leaving children alone with dogs- you should never do that with ANY dog- Ive seen PLENTLY of children who have been bitten by both small dogs, and the 'family lab'- it has nothing to do with the breed...

Lisa - posted on 10/18/2011

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How old is the dog?It needs to be watched.Did it actually bite you and break open the skin?IF so,that's bad.I suggest letting a dog trainer analyze the dog's behavior and advise you what to do.I have 3 dogs and 7 cats and none of them get that rough with my son!He's 7.If your kids are young,even more caution is warranted.Have the dog evalluated!

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/17/2011

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I agree with Shayne, dogs should feel like a member of your family. They aren't 'stupid things' that should just be gotten rid of when they don't behaive. You wouldn't do that to a child.

Shayne - posted on 10/17/2011

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I disagree,a dog is not a "stupid thing",it's a living,breathing,part of your family,a companion,and a friend for life. It's negative comments like that which give dogs a bad name MALIA............

Malia - posted on 10/17/2011

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Having two babies is hard job enough..dont be more stress with a stupid thing that's not yours... tell him to pick a dog or kids..thats it!

Sharlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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Kate no its me ,my hubbiy always has ago at me about my mistakes sorry!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kate CP - posted on 10/17/2011

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Okay, are different people typing for you because one moment you're typing in all caps and having lots of spelling and typing errors and the next you're using punctuation. Your writing style is changing and it's confusing me.

Sharlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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Hi Jane look im not going to disrepect you but I thought this website was to ask Qstions,exchange ideas and give advise and meet new people

Kate CP - posted on 10/17/2011

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Those are not wild dogs. They are domestic dogs. And what you'll notice is they're not "running wild" they are staying close to human population to survive. They don't know how to live in a truly wild setting. If it were a pack of wolves you would never see them. They stay away from humans when at all possible.

[deleted account]

You say that dogs do not have the packing order that wolves do and that you most never will see dogs running together. My family lives about three miles out of town in a large subdivision. We are all the time seeing packs of dogs that are running wild. Probably due to people who no longer want their pets dumping them in the "country" to live on their own. Well, these dog are dangerous. Everyone I see walking in our area always has a can of pepper spray And a large stick or bat with them. That is sad! I believe in turning pets over to humane societies such as the one we have. It's a no kill shelter and works deligently to get pets new forever homes. You say these dogs don't run in packs, then what shall I call these animals I see running loose and dangerously in our neighborhoods all the time?!!! God forbid, no child or adult has been attacked as yet!

Jane - posted on 10/17/2011

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Sharlene - It doesn't matter where you are from. Your dog still needs training or a new home.

Sharlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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DARLS THATS FINE EVERYON E ON HERE THINKS IM AMERICAN BUT IM FROM SYDNEY AUSTRALIA ALL THE BEST AND HOPE TO RUN INTO YOU AGAIN LOL

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/17/2011

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LOL no Sharlene I didn't even know you were Aussie. I'm an American living in Canada.

Sharlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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Hi Meggie,are you having a go at me couse IM AUSSIE,LOL THANKS DARLS

Peita - posted on 10/17/2011

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I have a purebred staffy bitch and the one word I use to describe her is HYPER, she is 9yrs old and still acts like a puppy in reguards to play and energy. They are a beautiful breed and I have had years of working at a dog kennel and I personally have not met a truley aggressive pure bred staffy. I agree with others, you need to get her some training and get her socialised more with children.. I don't believe in getting rid of pets because you have children, you just need to teach her that she needs to play differently with the children. Staffy's are a very busy breed, always on the go, maybe some more excersice will help with the crazy play she does. There is a difference between play biting and attacking!!

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/17/2011

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The dog ate my children... is that like the dingo ate my baby?

I wouldn't say the dog is being real agressive I'd say she's being rambunctious and overly energetic and needs some training. That's what the issue with my SIL's dog is. He's a boxer german shepard mix that jumps on everyone. He once jumped on me while I was sitting down holding my then 2 month old. He's not an agressive dog, he's just a very naughty dog and needs more training. He gets plenty of love and attention.

Charlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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I dont but I would not think that is normal. Is she beoing real aggressive

[deleted account]

GET RID OF THE DOG!!! Do you want to be the one on TV crying because the dog ate you kid and you ignored all the signs? Your husband needs to put his CHILDREN ahead of a DOG! I had a dog that I loved very much, but the first time she tried to bite my son (then 3 years old) was the last time she tried to bite ANYONE!

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 10/17/2011

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I dissagree, if a dog is coming at you then you do have a right to hit it. This isn't the same as abuse it's defending yourself. That's what I had to do at a house I went to. One of my aunts was a mail carrier and she was attacked by a dog. It tore her leg up so bad that she needed plastic surgery on it. She's a dog lover too and has a pit mix, but when she finally went back to work she had another altercation with someone else's dog and had to use pepper spray on it.

I'm not saying you should beat your dog, but a pop on the snout when it does try to snap at you won't make it afraid of you.

Kylie, what Brooke said is true. Just because a few dogs in the breed are aggresive doesn't make the entire breed dangerous. I've said this before and I'll say it again I have been around probably 50 or so so called 'aggressive dogs" most of them just sniff me and go about their business. I've only had one dog go after me and she was a mix breed who wasn't trained properly so her owners usually kept her outside when the care aide came in.

My brother and my aunt both own pit mixes and both of them are very easy going. My aunt's dog is 15 so she's getting a little more territorial, but my brother's dog is very well behaived. He used to watch my 7 year old like she was his own puppy and now he does the same with my nephew. You can take food from his dish or a toy or chew from his mouth and he won't do anything. I've never heard of him snapping or growling at anyone. That's because my brother took the time to raise him correctly and socialized him.

Marta - posted on 10/17/2011

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It is not the dogs fault that she hasn't been properly trained. You need to work with her before the kids end up scared of dogs for life. It sounds like a combination of things with her-she hasn't been taught not to jump on people, and possibly she is a bit jealous of you and your husband talking or showing affection (my husband's black lab is a bit jealous, not sure who of) our dog just fusses at us when we talk or hug, but will settle down when told to. I'm sure by the sounds that your dog is just overexcited and hasn't been taught how to express affection in a calm, safe way. That means she could accidentally hurt you or the kids. I hope you will get some help with her and not have her re-homed or put down as many people do when they have kids. It doesn't have to be that way. With proper training she could be a wonderful companion to your kids and even protection for them. It will be worth the effort to work through this.

Brooke - posted on 10/17/2011

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Kylie, you can NOT label a dog dangerous based on it's breed that is ridiculously unfair. That's like saying a black person will rape a woman because he was born a black man it's just untrue and ridiculous. Barbara, I had an Amstaff X that I bought from a backyard breeder I fell in love at first sight and had to have him. I thought he was British though and I was a little worried when he grew much taller than either British Staffy I had growing up. When I took him to the vet they told me based on his looks and weight he was most like an Amstaff cross British Staffy. But I had to give him away when my son was a year old he was just incredibly active and I couldn't give him what he needed in terms of exercise and time with my young son. It still breaks my heart and I miss him so much. I saved up for a dog from a registered breeder and she's gorgeous, she's a purebred Amstaff and she too has an incredible amount of energy we can walk 5km and she's barely panting. So I've been looking into weight pull for her to help drain her energy and a backpack for our walks :)

[deleted account]

staffy's are considered to be dangerous dogs...if your dog's behviour is concerning you (and it seems like it should be) get rid of it! any dog can be dangerous.

Sharlene - posted on 10/17/2011

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Yeah but I dont hit her unless shes done somethig wrong to me or the kids

Donna - posted on 10/17/2011

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Marina I TOTALLY agree. There is no justification in hitting a dog or any animal ever. All it teaches them is to be afraid of you.

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