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Thread: Growling

  1. #1
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    Default Growling

    My daughter plays quite roughly with Banjo. It's a bit of a pain sometimes, because clothes have been torn and sheets wrecked (she hides under MY doona and encourages the dog to "dig her out" - sigh). But it's great that they play nevertheless.

    But recently Banjo has growled at her a couple of times. It is usually when she is sitting or lying on her.

    I know you should never punish a dog for growling as that could make it more likely that they will bite without warning. But so what is the best way to react to it? Is just backing off enough, as clearly it is my daughter's fault for going too far?

  2. #2
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    How cute...dig her out of the doona

    Thats really a good question and i would be interested to know peoples thoughts.

    IMO, i would never allow a dog to growl at a child no matter what the child was doing.

    I dont know your situation but to me IF that minor aggression excalated another time and the dog bit...he would be PTS. So even though the child may be in the wrong....the dog will suffer because you didnt stop that initial minor aggression.

    I may be way off base here...but i have always stopped any form of aggression especially with children and the dog has always just moved away from the child.
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  3. #3
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    Oskar growls at the girls and they really do annoy him, play rough with him and smother him. He growls when he has had enough, and when he does that, it's time out. Enough...the girls are told to leave him alone and give him his space. He is quite a placid dog, but even the placid pooch needs a break. I think maybe just let your daughter know that Banjo needs a break.

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    Yeah, that's what I thought, OM. Because I didn't think growling is a sign of aggression in its own right, but indeed just the dog saying "Hey watch it, you're annoying me", which should be their right to do. Clearly, if the growl isn't respected, a bite could occur. But I don't think you can prevent that by telling the dog off for growling.

  5. #5

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    In nature a bitch teaches her pups when enough is enough by growling so I guess you have the same thing here Banjo has had enough so is saying , kids back off please. You will need to let the kids know that when this happens, Banjo wants a break.
    Nev Allen
    Border River Pet Resort

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beloz View Post
    Yeah, that's what I thought, OM. Because I didn't think growling is a sign of aggression in its own right, but indeed just the dog saying "Hey watch it, you're annoying me", which should be their right to do. Clearly, if the growl isn't respected, a bite could occur. But I don't think you can prevent that by telling the dog off for growling.
    I think we have unreal expectations from our dogs. My kids harass the hell out of Oskar, they are kids they will do that, but to expect a dog to take it all, I mean c'mon!! I get the shits if my kids are all over me all the time, I need my space too. i don't get mad at the dog for growling. It's a very clear sign that he doesn't want to play anymore for a while.

  7. #7
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    I reckon growling is a good thing, because it lets you know when enough is enough. We all have our limits, right?

    When our nieces/nephews/godchildren etc visit, they inevitably follow Duke around until he is ragged. He usually gets to a point where he will give a bit of a growl, and they all know that means that it is time for him to have a break from playing.

    As a rule though, if he growls, I immediately move him or the object of his displeasure (which ever is easiest), and go with the distraction method for him or the child. The children in our life have all had this explained to them: "Duke is tired of playing now. Once he has a rest, you can play again" or "It's not nice to pull Duke's tail/poke his eyes/smack his face. You wouldn't like it if someone did it to you, so please don't do it to him". It is important that children know boundaries around pets, IMO. I'd be letting your daughter know that sitting/laying on him is not on.
    He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart.
    You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.

  8. #8
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    Yeah, I thought she would've gotten that message when our previous dog gave her a serious nip when she was 2.5 because she pinned her down! But she gets carried away when they play and 'forgets'. Kids are way harder to train than dogs...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beloz View Post
    Yeah, I thought she would've gotten that message when our previous dog gave her a serious nip when she was 2.5 because she pinned her down! But she gets carried away when they play and 'forgets'. Kids are way harder to train than dogs...
    Amen!!! I hear ya there lol

  10. #10

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    mmm I'm a little different I guess.

    Yes it is good that a growl is given as a warning first however I did kind of expect my dogs to take pretty much whatever my kids dished out. It was within reason of course,never cruelty or solid harassing , but I expect my dogs to remove themselves .
    I should say as well that my dogs have probably got me somewhat complacent as they are taught from day dot to be tolerant , something that hasn't needed that much intense training to be honest,the dogs have just been 'been' tolerant of the kids.
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