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Thread: My dog killed my other dog

  1. #1

    Default My dog killed my other dog

    I write this with tears running down my face.
    Today I came home from work to pools of blood across the floor and my baby boy Tae laying on the floor dripping with blood. Bite wounds all across his body.
    I took him to the vet who told me it would costs thousands to help him but it wouldn't guarantee that he would survive and because I didn't have enough money and didn't know anyone who could give me that kind of money I sadly had to choose to put my dog to sleep.
    I've never cried so much and so hard in my life.
    I've come home to have to mop up his blood. I was bawling my eyes out, not just traumatic to see so much blood but also because of how it happened and that I wasn't going to see my boy again and as morbid as this might sound, I felt like I was mopping the last part of him that remained. My heart is broken.
    I will never forget this day.
    My dog Bailey is 3yo and was the sweetest dog in the world, she would charm everyone she would meet and yet she was the core reason for Taes demise. She did this.
    The vet told me he would usually see this kind of damage from dogs who are trained to kill.
    Bailey wanted Tae dead. He had puncture wounds all across his body, his face/chest/legs/groin/tail.
    I wasn't home when this happened and i will forever blame myself and will always feel guilty because I will always wonder if i could of done something to prevent it.
    Bailey never shown signs of aggression. Always so sweet and grew up with Tae, always ate together with no fights, always played together with no issues.
    So to come home to this bloody sight is something i cannot even describe, I was in shock.
    I have 2 issues now which is what Im essentially trying to get to.
    How do I cope with the loss of my dog after what's happened?
    I will never look at Bailey the same, my feelings towards her has changed dramatically. I don't want her around.
    Don't get me wrong, I love her but I don't want her around anymore. I will never forgive her for what she's done.
    My other question is, what do I do with Bailey?
    I would greatly appreciate anyones kind words and help.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by valm85 View Post
    I will never look at Bailey the same, my feelings towards her has changed dramatically. I don't want her around.
    Don't get me wrong, I love her but I don't want her around anymore. I will never forgive her for what she's done.
    My other question is, what do I do with Bailey?
    I would greatly appreciate anyones kind words and help.
    How shocking for you, I can totally understand all your emotions and how you feel like you do.

    I also understand how you might feel towards Bailey. However these are dogs we are talking about. The responsibility lies on you to keep them safe, Bailey is not the core reason that Tae is dead.

    Leaving dogs together always carries dangers and you simply cannot blame the dog when things go wrong. I know many people do not advocate leaving dogs unsupervised together. I never leave puppies unsupervised with adult dogs and my inclination is not to leave very senior dogs with younger dogs. I have a number of dogs and I would never leave my two boys together because I know there is a potential there for a fight. I do leave my dogs in pairings that I am pretty sure are safe like my male BC with my female kelpie.

    You may have missed some subtle signs.

    Bailey will not understand what she has done and you will need to accept that what happened is actually not her fault. You say she is a sweet, loving dog, well she still is to you.

    However I would consider my options when getting a new puppy. Was there a big difference in size? It is probabaly not going to be safe to leave a young dog around Bailey unsupervised.

    It is always difficult to cope with the loss of a loved pet. I am going through that myself having just lost a wonderful old dog. You go through the various stages of grief. Initially disbelief, anger then you start to have feelings of guilt as to if you could have prevented it and gradually an acceptance and maybe a change in how you might do things moving forward.

    As to Bailey, you simply cant blame her but you are going to have to go through the grieving process with her as well to deal with the changed image you have of her in your mind. You have to reconnect with all the positive attributes she has and the relationship you already have with her. You have to accept that it is not her fault this happened.

    I have had one of my dogs injure the other, and I resist the urge to feel angry with the offending dog. I instead get angry with me and resolve to mamage the situation better. I still love the offending dog as they have no sense of wrong doing. I know it is much harder for you where there has been such devastation but you do have to accept that it was your responsibility. The thing I have learned in life and with dogs that often lessons are learned the hard way and I never blame the dog.

    Good luck with all this, it is difficult I know. Feeling guilt is often par for the course with dogs, I also blame myself for mistakes I have made over the years. You have to accept that yes you could have managed things better and that some lessons are hard learned. This is a very human condition.
    Last edited by Kalacreek; 11-12-2014 at 12:23 AM.

  3. #3
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    I feel so very sorry for your loss and also how traumatic it must have been



    I have lived with two dogs who hated each other and I initially blamed the dog (larger newf) for the fight and attack. it was not until i did furhter studies in dog behaviour and dog language (body language with Turid Rugaas in Finland) that we suddenly realised the dog that seemed to be the underdog initiated all the problems. Once we knew that we were able to teach them to live together and they now do. We also learned to teach our dogs that we were the ones in charge of the household

    It could possibly be a really good idea to go and see someone who is a behaviourist/dog trainer to assess Bailey and see if she is aggressvie It might help you to "see" how Bailey is and make you more comfortable living with her in the future.

    They might also help you with Good Leadership and dogs living management.

    Laying blame will not help you. they were dogs and it happens, I would not blame yourself as you had no idea there might have been tension. It is not quite an accident, but you must just accept it as such and go on. It will be tough. My big Rescue newfie girl never killed my other dog, but when she nearly did (now 6.5 years ago) I also found it very hard not to take out my anger at her. I am glad I did not destroy our bond by hating her, because she is now my heart dog and amazing to live with and all our other dogs. The littler non-newf now also lives happily with us, but we are more observant of her and we now know that she caused the problem. I am only telling you this to hopefylly allow you to grieve for your lost dog, but maybe not hate Bailey as she is only a dog and reacted to certain things that happen as most dogs would.........I know this is going to be very difficult for you, that is why I think it is still a good idea to see someone with Bailey, so you know what could possibly happen in the future. I decided to learn more about Dog behaviour and learn as much as possible about it and dog training. Took the Newfie to many Aggressive dog work-shops/Seminars/Trainers all over Australia and learned that I was taking the wrong dog, funny now but I had no idea. We live and learn.........I hope you are OK, this is very tough for you. Take care
    Pets are forever

  4. #4
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    This is so horrific. I'm really sorry this happened to you. I totally understand your reaction of not wanting to have Bailey around anymore. I'm sure I would feel the same. I couldn't look at Nero for a while after I caught him torturing a baby rabbit to death. I don't know what I would have done if it was another dog...

    Still I think you should hang in there and give it time to heal. Like the others said, it's not her fault even though I'm sure you feel very strongly that it is. If she really never showed any signs of dog aggression have you thought about having her checked out by the vet? Maybe something is wrong with her health?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by margoo View Post
    This is so horrific. I'm really sorry this happened to you. I totally understand your reaction of not wanting to have Bailey around anymore. I'm sure I would feel the same. I couldn't look at Nero for a while after I caught him torturing a baby rabbit to death. I don't know what I would have done if it was another dog...

    Still I think you should hang in there and give it time to heal. Like the others said, it's not her fault even though I'm sure you feel very strongly that it is. If she really never showed any signs of dog aggression have you thought about having her checked out by the vet? Maybe something is wrong with her health?
    I think sometimes it can happen within a household. My male dogs only show aggression to each other not other dogs. It is important to understand the relationship within the house. Leaving a young puppy.adolescent alone with an older stronger dog unsupervised is often fraught with problems. I know quite a few dogs that can become aggressive when hassled by a pup or young dog that are not normally dog aggressive. Something may have triggered this a bit like Newfsie mentioning that it was the other dog that was actually the problem.

    However I also agree it is worth setting up an appointment with a professional dog trainer/ behaviourist to talk through what happened and to get Bailey assessed.

  6. #6
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    valm85

    So sorry this has happened to you.

    There is so much you haven't told us - it's hard to make any useful suggestions about why Bailey did what she did or how you might prevent this happening again.

    Or what you should do with Bailey now?

    Were the dogs about the same size?
    Were they the same age - or from the same litter?
    Did you get them both at the same time?
    Which one did you get first?
    What do you know of their history before you got them?
    How much exercise (walking) did they get?
    How long were they left alone each day?
    Were they left outside in the back yard most of the time or were they with you when you were home?
    Were they desexed? Was one desexed and not the other?
    Do you ever yell at or hit your dogs when they growled or were naughty?

    I think I'd find it very hard to keep a dog that had shown absolutely no sign of aggression towards the other dog (that I could see) and then tore the other dog to pieces. Either the dog was broken in some way or me as the owner missed some important signs - because there's usually many very subtle signs and actual damaging attacks are very rare.

    Discomfort with one or both dogs usually starts with avoidance, looking away, lip licking... growls to send away, then some loud noisy fights that might look like "play fighting" to some because no damage is done, but if they're not accompanied by a whole bunch of play signals like play bows and invitations to follow rather than one dog chasing the other when it doesn't want to be (avoidance signals)... then it's not play - it's the last resort and warning before the dog starts hurting the other dog.

    If they're trapped in a small space (house or room) together and can't get away from each other, or there's stuff worth fighting over (eg toys or food) and they are gathered close enough that one dog can guard all of them - that can also lead to serious fights.

    It could also be as simple as one dog got injured (wasp sting or hurt leg) and blamed the other dog and got really nasty when he didn't leave her alone...

    With Bailey - given she has attacked your other dog - it wouldn't be fair to rehome her with anyone else because they may end up having the same problem and Bailey might kill any other dog they own or a stranger's dog.

    I think given you haven't got a lot of money - your cheapest option would be to put to sleep Bailey.

    If you want to keep her - you have to think about getting her assessed thoroughly by a vet behaviourist - who can check how she is with other dogs, and with other humans, and see if she can be trained or if she has something wrong in her brain that causes sudden and unprovoked aggression. This could cost a lot of money - almost as much as it would have cost to try to save Tae.

    If you have small children that live with you or visit you, they may also be at risk from Bailey - because many dogs see children as equals and treat them like dogs. This article outlines some of the warning signs of impending dog violence and how many people don't notice them...

    Didn’t see that bite coming? Look a little harder
    Last edited by Hyacinth; 11-12-2014 at 11:06 AM.

  7. #7
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    Wow, what a traumatic experience!

    I think most people can relate to the guilt you're feeling after this event, everyone has lost something close to them at some point. I remember a few years back I had a couple birds, they were outside in their cage on the patio one morning while I was still in bed - I heard something like a crash noise, but being in a mostly zombie-like state I didn't really make anything of it. Of course I wake up to find the cage had somehow rolled off the patio, and was laying on it's side on the grass, one of the birds crushed underneath it and the other still in shock in the cage. I couldn't live with myself for a week after that - thinking if I had've woken up to check the noise, maybe the bird would have survived .. but alas.

    I'd probably just hold off on any decisions until you've managed to relax about the whole situation a bit - so many times I've reacted spontaneously because of something that's happened, then regretted it not even a day later. There's no point causing more stress to yourself by trying to "fix" everything at once. Is there someone perhaps that could look after Bailey for you while you come to grips with everything? While putting her down came to your mind, I think if you did go that route without thoroughly thinking it through first would result in more heartbreak.

  8. #8
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    I read this and try and work out the reactions. It has to be a severe trauma for you and the grieving process not only for your lost dog but your lost confidence in yourself as a dog owner. The one that needs forgiveness is you as the dog was being, well a dog under some circumstance you may never understand. AS Newfsie indicates the dynamics can be complicated, misleading and very hard to work out. Like others I would be inclined to give yourself some time, the suggestion to board Bailey out for a time may be a useful one while you process. I would get some counselling even a couple of sessions would be helpful to give you some reflective tools. My heart goes out to you its a dreadful thing to have happened.

  9. #9

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    The post I agree with most is Hyacinth.

    The more dogs I work with, the more clubs I join and train with and the more sports I try, it really serves to highlights just how different dogs can be from each other. There's breed, that plays a big role, there's how the dog is raised and then there's also temperament. Some dogs have thinner nerves and are more easily overwhelmed. You might call it 'snapping', it happens in people too. Once this happens, there is no reasoning with the animal. You need to get away and wait till they calm down. If you happen to be locked in a small, enclosed space with this animal well you're in real trouble. There are signs, there are always signs but it takes less for some dogs to reach a 10 than it does for others and how they handle themselves when in that state is also different.

    I'm so sorry for what you went through. I disagree that this is a normal thing and you shouldn't ever be able to leave your pets together. If you have a dog that typically isn't dog aggressive that has always lived with another dog and one day you come home and it's killed this other dog well either there had to be some pretty big signs going on that somehow you missed (killing another animal, not for hunting and who happens to be a pack member is pretty big thing in my books) or you have an unstable, thin nerved dog. I would never leave my dog alone with most large males but he makes it pretty obvious that there will be issues. They constantly circle each other, the posture is stiff, they won't relax etc and focus on anything except each other. But I do leave him alone with certain dogs and whilst it's always possible something could happen, it's not something I worry about. I view it in the same way as I view my work colleagues, I know them but they're still only human and one of them could lose it and attack me one day... but I'm not overly concerned.

    Probably get a whole heap of criticism for that but come on, most people with more than one dog leave them alone together and very few people go through this. Either they know their dogs have issues with each other, especially in the case of certain breeds, owning 2 dogs of the same gender etc, or the dogs are fine and spend time alone together. I only know a couple of people who separate their dogs all the time, and they know it's a likely outcome from the choices they make about adding certain dogs to their family. I mean I know that if I decided I wanted another large male entire dog I wouldn't be expecting to be able to leave it alone with Sammy. But if I got a female and I didn't see any signs, I would leave them alone together. Sammy is very stable and I wouldn't own another dog unless I was also fairly confident about her temperament (I'd have to have seen the parents working and watched the dog with Sammy for a long time before trusting her but ultimately, my expectation would be that they could be alone together one day and I wouldn't have to worry about them).

    I'm so sorry for what happened. I personally wouldn't be able to keep the dog if that happened to me. Not because it killed another dog, or because I loved the dog I killed but because I couldn't read that dog. To have missed all the signs means that either I had a dog with thin nerves and/or that I missed all the signs. That's super scary as far as I'm concerned and I wouldn't trust that dog ever again so I couldn't be a good owner to them anymore. I'm honest on these forums and I don't say what I think will make people like me, just what I honestly believe. That's the whole appeal for me of forums in the first place, but I am sorry if I offend anyone because that's not my intention.

  10. #10
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    It is a difficult one because none of us really know the circumstances or anything about the dogs. Yeah I leave dogs together, but I generally dont leave a young puppy with older dogs unsupervised untill they have grown a little and I understand the relationships. I leave my dogs based on my understanding of their relationships. I do know that when older dogs become frail relationships can change. However I am managing more dogs tham the average suburban household.

    On some forums people are very against leaving dogs together. I personally think it is too hard to call this one because of our lack of knowledge of the situation. I would think that the dog needs a professional assesment to move forward. If the OP cant afford this then Hyacinth is probably right about what to do next. Hyacinth is also right about the lack of information. I have seen a large dog give a small dog a couple of quick shakes, fatally wounding the smaller dog.

    I just think that blaming the dog is not right. We are the humans it is up to us to shoulder that responsibility and work through why and learn from it. It is how we learn not to end up in a similar situation down the track. Discarding the dog with out learning more about where the issue lay and the the choices you made regarding the dog, from its breed, management breeding, socilaisation, you learn nothing especially if you are new to owning dogs.

    The whole dynamics of the situation could have been very wrong but we just dont know from that first post. Always trouble with dealing out advise in these potentially dangerous situations on the internet.

    Hopefully all the comments have given the OP a range of perspectives on what to do next. Perhaps they will come back and provide more information and ask more questions.
    Last edited by Kalacreek; 11-12-2014 at 09:09 PM.

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