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Putting a DOG before a child? ABIU??

(200 Posts)
Magpie1959 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:14:52

We have family visiting from New Zealand for the first time in 10 years to attend a family wedding.
My cousin has decided hold a get together at her house - it will be a big party with lots of family from across the country as well as those from NZ.
Everyone from the family is invited - except my 3yo grandchild - who the family from NZ have not even met yet!
The reason my Grandson isn't welcome is because the cousin hosting the party has a dog which is extremely territorial and sometimes bites.
In my view this is absolutely unacceptable. The problem is with the dog not the child (and with my cousin for refusing to address the dogs behaviour).
I have pointed out that its not just my Grandson that is at risk of being bitten, the dog is just as likely to bite older children and adults, but my cousin will not budge.
I have also suggested that the dog wear a soft muzzle for just a few hours whilst my Grandson is there but she will not hear of it - even though the dog does get muzzled when it goes to the groomers!
I am really upset about it. Am I missing something here? Is it me that is out of order?

Tangerine Sat 09-Nov-19 14:19:07

I think you're right and your cousin is wrong.

The dog could bite anyone and his/her behaviour needs to be controlled.

EllanVannin Sat 09-Nov-19 14:25:47

A child is never safe near any dog and it's not fair to have the two together. Even a family dog can bite a child who is a family member.
The dog in question should be muzzled for safety purposes, or shut outside.
I wouldn't be taking a child anywhere where a dog could prove to be a danger, unless a muzzle was put on it.

Grammaretto Sat 09-Nov-19 14:26:41

YANBU at all. Is this the only opportunity you will have of seeing the NZ rellies? Could you not meet in a more intimate place minus aggressive dog?
I am definitely with you on this and I think most rational people would be.

crazyH Sat 09-Nov-19 14:26:48

It's not you Magpie. It's not acceptable for the dog to take precedence over a little child. I hope the 'territorial' dog is not going to be let loose at the party. Why can't your cousin board him into kennels for the day?
Frankly, I wouldn't go to the party. Get your visiting NZ family over to your place for tea or dinner and invite your little grandson and his parents as well.

Maggiemaybe Sat 09-Nov-19 14:39:59

That's just mad. A child should always have priority over a pet imho. And others are right to say that a territorial dog that bites should be kept well away from the gathering anyway.
Also, surely this means that another family member is going to miss meeting the relatives, as someone will have to look after your DGS? It's your cousin who is BU.

Magpie1959 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:47:20

Yes the dog will be 'let loose' at the party.
The dog is always put in kennels whilst her own young grandchildren visit but she has refused point blank to do this on this occasion (her own GChildren won't be there).
We have arranged to meet up with the NZ family next week but there are a lot of other family members that we haven't seen for a while who are coming just for the day.
Up until today we had decided to boycott the party. We have thought long and hard about it and have decided that we will go because we don't want to be responsible for any bad feeling at the forthcoming wedding.
I just hope I can bite my tongue and get through the day without giving her a piece of my mind!

Oopsminty Sat 09-Nov-19 14:52:47

Maybe your cousin just doesn't want a young child there.

Not saying it's right but it's a possibility

Sara65 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:55:36

Well I would say your grandson is well out of it, you wouldn’t have a seconds peace if he was with you.

I agree it’s a stupid situation, but some people are completely stupid about their dogs.

Davida1968 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:57:39

I think Ooopsminty may well have suggested the right answer - simply that your cousin doesn't want a three year old to be at the party. How you might address this is a tricky one....

notanan2 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:59:38

Well if nobody else offered to host I guess they can. Can you not catch up with the youngster the day after or something? Wont you see the child at the wedding? Can you invite the child to your home?

Its your cousins do so the guest list is up to them

Magpie1959 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:00:54

Ooopsminty, yes I do appreciate that may be the reason - but if that is the case then she should just say so instead of using the dog as an excuse. She has a really beautiful home so I wouldn't blame her but a dog makes more mess than any child with all the hair, muddy paws, slobber etc etc.

Maggiemaybe, My daughter, the baby's Mum, will not be able to go to the party as she has no options for alternative childcare. She wouldn't go without him anyway!

notanan2 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:02:32

I just hope I can bite my tongue and get through the day without giving her a piece of my mind!

You should definitely not go if you are not accepting the invite with grace! You are going to go, eat their food, drink their drinks and give them a piece of your mind? Charming!

It sounds like several get togethers are happening around the wedding not just this one so why is it a problem.

notanan2 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:05:33

If you want a big party that is all about the visitors from NZ, host one!

notanan2 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:09:52

I really think there are only 2 decent options:

Go and fully enjoy the catch up with family/older children without having to keep half an eye on a toddler/preschooler all day. And be a graceful guest


Dont go and take the child out for the day if you want the "wedding week" to be all about seeing them.

Thats it. All in or all out. It is nit your place to tell them who to host.

Grammaretto Sat 09-Nov-19 15:13:24

Good for you to go anyway and be "obedient". That is the correct thing to do. Why the dog has to be let loose on the assembly seems extraordinary to me but some people and their pets............

Doodledog Sat 09-Nov-19 15:15:23

It's tricky, as if the party is in the dog owners' home then the guest list is really up to them. I don't think I would put a dog before a child; but if the dog lives there it makes a certain amount of sense to put its needs first, and they may disapprove of muzzling.

The bottom line is that they are responsible for the dog, and if it bit your grandchild there is a chance that it would have to be destroyed (not to mention the distress to the toddler!) Because of that, it is even more a case of 'their house, their rules' than it would have been without the dog.

Maybe its less about putting the dog first than protecting your grandchild.

grannyactivist Sat 09-Nov-19 15:16:56

In your shoes I would be inclined to babysit the grandson so that your daughter can go to the party.

We have both young children and dogs in our family. Today our son and daughter-in-law are attending an 80th birthday party and dropped their dog off here on the way; their child is with them.

notanan2 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:20:27

And of course your daughter could go! She could go in your place, she could use holiday childcare, if she has a partner they could "tag team" (DH did that if our babies were in phases where they didnt settle with babysitters, one go for the first half and the other go for the second half)

BlueBelle Sat 09-Nov-19 15:24:23

Blimey I wouldn’t want to go
If she’s banning all kids that’s one thing but if it’s only your grand lad and his mum then I d feel stuff your party and hold one of my own
Let’s hope the dog doesn’t bite another guest there’s no way I d want go to a big party with a territorial dog wandering around not good for the dog either I wouldn’t think, what a stupid lady to think a dog should be part of a big party totally inappropriate

Esther1 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:25:43

I reckon she doesn’t want a three year old at the party and is using the dog as an excuse. Go with good grace, it’s absolutely not worth any bad feeling. I say this as somebody who adores small children but feels really uncomfortable around any dog. Just go along with it all and don’t overthink it all.

sodapop Sat 09-Nov-19 16:13:39

You are not being unreasonable Magpie but your cousin is. It seems odd that the dog is put into kennels when her own grandchildren visit but not this time. More to this than meets the eye ?
I agree with Grannyactivist let your daughter go and you can baby sit. One of those times when you have to bite your tongue I'm afraid.

Magpie1959 Sat 09-Nov-19 16:21:16

Bluebelle, thank you for your comments, that sums up how I feel.
Doodledog, I think you are my cousin using a pseudonym (lol) they are more or less her exact words but it doesn't address the fact that the dog is liable to bite anyone at the party not just my GS. If the dogs' aggressive behaviour was dealt with there wouldn't be an issue (and a muzzle is already being used when required).

Thank you everyone else for your advice and different points of view. I will be attending the party and will really enjoy a good catch up with my many Aunties, Uncles, Sisters, Nephews, Nieces, cousins etc etc but I will remain upset that the newest member of our family won't enjoy meeting his extended family too.

grannysyb Sat 09-Nov-19 16:34:15

Some years ago a friend came round to see DH in tears, their young dog had turned very territorial and snappy and had cornered her in the kitchen. He told her that if the dog bit anyone and that she knew it was aggressive she could be sued. He put the dog down for her. I can'ht understand why she wont put the dog into some form of daycare so that everyone can relax

GrandmaMoira Sat 09-Nov-19 16:37:34

I wouldn't want to go to a house where there's a dog that bites, let alone take a child. Is there no-one else in the family who is wary of this dog?