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rescue dogs and small children

(86 Posts)
janipans Sun 13-Dec-20 03:58:51

My daughter is going to re-home dog from Macedomia! She has 2 children aged 2 and 4 and 2 cats.
I am terrified about this and writing this at 3.40 am as can't sleep. Looking for advice/reassurance.
I told her UK agencies have good reason for not allowing people with young children to adopt dogs. She said it was cage trained and they'd reinstate the stairgates but I have this vision of one of my grandchildren getting up in the night and "going to see doggy" and putting hands through the cage ... and getting maimed for life!
I also don't agree with cages - you wouldn't put your child in one would you? A dog should be one of the family.
I have gently suggested this may be the wrong time but am afraid to press too hard in case I alienate her - they are her children and the decision is for her and hubby to make, after all, but I am so, so worried.
My daughter has a big, soft heart and I can sort of understand her wanting to rescue a dog rather than get a puppy, ... but I just think the children are too young and young children and dogs can be unpredictable. Now 4am and tearful so going to take something for the headache and try to sleep and wait to hear your thoughts tomorrow!

Lolo81 Sun 13-Dec-20 04:30:04

Depending on how your DD is going about getting this dog, she will probably have to jump through more hoops to get the dog home doing it this way than she would by just going and buying a puppy.
As far as I am aware most rehoming services match the dog with a forever home, which means that a home with young children would not be suitable for a dog with aggression issues. All that is to say she may actually be safer doing it this way than by buying an unknown quantity from a breeder. Adult dogs are generally less bouncy and less likely to mouth than a puppy, both of which are far less dangerous for children.
Above all else you have to trust your DD, is she a good mum, wife, daughter, employee, person? If yes to any or all of these questions then trust her: adding a dog to the family could be a wonderful experience for your GC. I was raised around dogs and loved all of them, was taught how to interact and had responsibilities towards helping keep them healthy. These are all good things.
Now this bit might be a wee bit stern; this isn’t your concern and you shouldn’t voice it - DD is an adult and just because she’s making choices that you wouldn’t doesn’t make her a careless parent.
Maybe do some research into the breeds she is looking at to try and reassure yourself, it’s natural to worry - but please don’t catastrophise - it’s a dog, not a bomb!!

OceanMama Sun 13-Dec-20 04:32:46

What kind of dog is it? Rescue dogs can be lovely. They tend to be very good at making sure that the dogs go to the right homes too. With such young children it might be harder to get a rescue dog. I know they can be reluctant with young children in the house, but that is more for the dog's sake than the children.

I used to agree with you about caging (or crating) dogs. Then I read more about it and how, for a dog, it is like a den and they find it a safe and comforting space. Of course, there are limits to how much it should be used. We don't use ours often but it's the safest place for them to be when we go out. Usually there is someone at home with them. My dogs voluntarily take themselves into their crates for rests when they are sitting with the door open, so it's a space they like and obviously enjoy.

Has your daughter done a lot of research about breeds and do you trust her to make a good decision that puts her children first? If so, try not to worry too much. I hope you get some sleep.

LovelyCuppa Sun 13-Dec-20 06:38:31

The breed of dog will make an enormous difference. We had a rescue spaniel when I was a child. He was enormous but so gentle. He became my best friend and there are many silly secrets from my childhood that I only ever told him.

PollyDolly Sun 13-Dec-20 06:47:01


The breed of dog will make an enormous difference. We had a rescue spaniel when I was a child. He was enormous but so gentle. He became my best friend and there are many silly secrets from my childhood that I only ever told him.

Oh LovelyCuppa, I just conjured up this heartwarming image of you whispering confessions in the spaniels ear.

On re-homing rescue dogs, if she really must have a dog what is wrong with rescuing one in the UK ? There's loads of dogs of all ages needing new homes!

Personally, with such young children I wouldn't bring another animal into the home. Small furry creatures are all too often considered toys by children and the outcome can be most unpleasant, not the animals fault either!

Dwmxwg Sun 13-Dec-20 06:54:14

janipans crates are meant to give the dog a safe place. We used one for our golden retriever when he was a puppy and it worked really well until he outgrew it and he now sleeps in the kitchen.
Our last dog was from Battersea dogs home and lived to the grand age of 17. He was brilliant with children but when he died I too was nervous about getting another rescue with young grandchildren visiting regularly. Dogs need lots of time and patience invested in them when they arrive in a new home, with a 2 and 4 year old that will be a challenge, I hope her OH is in full agreement and shares the care. Good luck

janipans Sun 13-Dec-20 07:07:15

Thank you all. Just the sort of reassurances I needed to hear!
7am now and still awake!
The dog is 6 months old and a medium looking size, probably a mongrel. It's the whole importing it bit (and circumventing UK checks and balances) which makes it most worrying I think. If she was getting it from a UK charity I'd feel happier. I can't find any adddress for this charity in Strumica only facebook and email so I worry that it may just be a front for people taking strays from the streets and "trafficking" them over here, for financial gain, although the facebook stuff looks genuine enough and my DD tells me she has messaged other owners who got their dogs from them.

I too had a dog (but when I was older) so I know what joy and love they can bring to your life, I just worry about my very lively and inquisitive and headstrong (sometimes) grandchildren and it's probably worse for not having seen them for ages (we're shielding due to DH health)

Situpstraight2 Sun 13-Dec-20 07:16:14

DD has a rescue dog from abroad, she had to be checked out by the Charity with a home visit to make sure that she and her home were suitable, the dogs have to be health checked, they don’t circumvent checks at our borders!

The young dog is a mongrel and has some issues but is a lovely friendly dog once she gets used to you, she stays with us 2 days a week .
My other daughter has a dog that she rehomed after a friends marriage broke up and he sleeps in his crate and retreats into it when he wants some peace and quiet, it certainly isn’t a punishment, he has a bed in there with his favourite toys and anything else he can drag into there without the family missing it, often their scarves and hats!
So don’t worry, your DD sounds a sensible lady, however if things don’t work out the people she is dealing with Will rehome the dog if necessary.

NfkDumpling Sun 13-Dec-20 07:45:07

When I was two (a very long time ago I know) my DF brought home a six month old Staffordshire Bull Terrier. She was free to any home as her owner couldn't cope with her and he found her shut in a coal shed.

No crates then of course, and no stair gate, but her basket was her safe place and I knew not to touch her there - and she was not allowed on my bed either! She was immediately my best friend and defended me against the world for the next twelve years.

I gather there are 'breeders' in the UK importing puppies from the continent and selling them on at exorbitant prices. Unless you can get a pup from someone you know, nothing is guaranteed nowadays.

FindingNemo15 Sun 13-Dec-20 08:04:43

A lot of rescue homes will not rehome dogs where there are children under 5 for everyones safety

EllanVannin Sun 13-Dec-20 08:10:15

I wouldn't bring in a strange dog where there are children, ever.

Chardy Sun 13-Dec-20 08:53:03

Cages can be the dog's own private space, and very useful when getting a dog used to a new home.

Grandmabatty Sun 13-Dec-20 09:12:42

My last two fogs were rescue dogs and the loveliest dogs ever. Gentle and well behaved. One of my neighbours has recently acquired a Romanian rescue dog and she is so friendly and happy to see you. I would trust your daughter on this. As others have said, cages are a good thing for the dog to have a safe space from wee hands! Try not to worry.

sodapop Sun 13-Dec-20 09:43:03

You have to trust your daughter to take care of her children janipans I don't like crates much but in this instance it will be a safe place for the dog to retreat to away from the children. I don't think any rules will have been circumvented. Like Pollydolly I did wonder why your daughter didn't get a UK rescue dog.
Don't worry I have two rescue dogs at present and they are kind and gentle.

janipans Sun 13-Dec-20 13:24:20

Thank you one and all. I feel much better now! It really helps to rationalise a situation when you can benefit from the experiences of others on Gransnet. Under normal circumstances I would have been meeting up with groups of friends and getting feedbak that way, so thank goodness for Gransnet!
Will relegate this to the bottom of my worry list ... and try and get some sleep tonight!! Thank you!

ElaineI Sun 13-Dec-20 13:46:44

One of my friends has just had a bad experience with rehoming a dog from Turkey. The agency was very good but when the dog arrived it was very large - much bigger than she was led to believe and she could barely control it on a lead. Also it could jump very high up and over the fence. She quickly had it fostered and hopefully someone with a big garden and strong arms has adopted it. The dog was not at all vicious just too big for her.
Another couple in my area had a rescue dog from Europe which ran away and despite lots of people on the local forum trying to catch her, she was terrified and got killed by a car. Not the driver's fault. As long as your daughter has researched it and keeps the dog quiet for some time before introducing it to the children, they should be ok.
I also thought cages were safe places for dogs but might be wrong as I have always had cats.

Lucretzia Sun 13-Dec-20 13:56:11

We have a rescue JRX. We've had her about 6 years. An absolute joy.

When we have visiting grandchildren, initially I was very careful keeping them apart.

Time went by, Minnie is now the children's best buddy. She helps them in the swimming pool . Takes part in games. Alway happy to run and play ball with them. Sits on their knees at the end of the day.

Of course, not all dogs are the same but with time care and 100% no leaving dog with young children, all will helpfully end up will end up with a happy family and a much loved dog!

FlexibleFriend Sun 13-Dec-20 14:58:01

Crates for dogs are no different to a playpen for kids if used properly. Personally I wouldn't adopt a dog from overseas but that's me, we have more than enough dogs in this country looking for homes without importing them. That said your daughter needs to educate her children how to behave around any dog and that way they wont get maimed, puppies are just as capable of inflicting injuries if not more so. It sounds as if you have no faith in your daughter which is hardly fair.

BlueBelle Sun 13-Dec-20 15:08:07

Well dogs in this country have a much higher chance of being adopted than those in a poorer country so nothing wrong with adopting from somewhere else, a dog speaks dog language it doesn’t mind what person looks after it or what ethnicity they are
I don’t like crates at all but I do think children need training to leave the dog alone I think it’s equally important to train the children to know when to leave it alone to never tease or be rough
When my ex son in law brought home a staffy/husky mix
( local not from overseas) I was horrified and a bit worried for the children, but you could not get a more gentle dog
She really is a softy so as long as your daughter has done her homework and trains both children and dog and -never- leaves them alone hopefully all will be well

sodapop Sun 13-Dec-20 15:36:27

Just re-read your original post janipans and yes there were times when I would have happily put my children in a cage smile

FlexibleFriend Sun 13-Dec-20 21:56:18

Too many dogs especially staffies are put to sleep or if you prefer killed every day in this country because they are not rehomed, not enough people willing to take them on, yet we import dogs from anywhere and everywhere to rehome, I just don't get it. Yes all dogs deserve a decent home but let the country producing them find them homes.

Hilos Sun 13-Dec-20 22:15:24

Dogs are often sent from overseas as sadly charities cannot find enough locals interested in adopting and are underfunded and overflowing with abandoned and rescued animals. In some of these countries dogs are homeless and often treated appallingly. Injured street dogs are left to die or starve to death. I would therefore certainly consider adopting from overseas.

Nanna58 Sun 13-Dec-20 22:20:48

I have adopted my beautiful greyhounds from Spain for years, 6 in total . They have been a delight with children and grandchildren alike. This poor dog may very well prove the same.

jaylucy Mon 14-Dec-20 10:20:10

Can I say that if it is coming from overseas, the dog will have been thoroughly checked out by whichever shelter has it in its care for various things such a temperament , behaviour etc
They should also be fully aware of your DD home situation and she may well have had to have a home visit either online video or personal home visit before she was okayed to adopt.
All of the vets checks should be done before the dog leaves Macedonia. These will also include a rabies check along with any vaccinations the dog may need to get the pets passport.
It should be all above board and no different from adopting an animal from the UK.
If you are still worried. why don't you contact the shelter she is adopting from yourself and ask a few questions? There will be a base in the UK .

TrendyNannie6 Mon 14-Dec-20 10:26:52

Nothing wrong with crates. We have used this method for many many years, no problem whatsoever, children have to be told they are not to pull the dog about. As long as you research the type of dog and have boundaries in place, I’ve found a majority of the time it’s the owners that need more training than the dogs themselves, good luck and don’t panic as long as everyone is sensible it should go well, and arrives into a calm and not over excitable household