Kids and Dogs

Kailei

I don’t know what to do. My husband and I have been together for over 5 years and have had a dog for most of that time. We adopted him from the pound and have no idea what he was exposed to before we had him or even his true age. He does not to well with other dogs if they are on our property but behaves well/plays nicely when we take him somewhere neutral (a park, someone else’s house, etc.).

As far as interaction with kids, it’s been very limited. We currently have no children of our own, so there are no kids in the house. Years ago, we lived in an apartment complex and the kids there ran wild without supervision. Often, children would come running toward us if we had the dog on a walk and they would literally yell “Can I pet your dog?!” while running toward us. My dog would lunge and bark when this happened. We never let anyone get close enough for injury but he certainly scared the kids off (and made us nervous that he might bite if they got too close). I always assumed the behavior was him being protective, as he interpreted the kids running and yelling at us as aggressive behavior. However, we had our niece come stay with us for a week last year when she was 10 years old. He never acted aggressive toward her and actually followed her commands whenever she told him to do something. I was very impressed and this reinforced to me that he wasn’t bad with kids, it just depended on how they approached him.

Well, fast forward to today. My neighbor and his 2-year-old were out in their yard and I took my dog out to go potty. He is always on a lead staked to the ground so he cannot leave our yard. He went to the edge of he property to look at the neighbors and the little boy very calmly and slowly walked up to look at the doggy. My dog freaked out! He lunged and snapped at the boy and thank goodness I was out there with my dog and the boy’s father was within arm’s reach of the kid or I’m afraid he may have actually attacked him.

I took my dog inside immediately, scolded him, and promptly started sobbing. My husband and I just decided in March to start TTC and now I’m afraid of what will happen if we do get pregnant. I love my dog and I can’t imagine ever giving him up. But I don’t know how he will react to a baby now. Has anyone had any similar experiences? Was your dog good around you while your were pregnant, and around the baby when you brought them home?