February 20, 2014

Not Standing A Chance

In just over a week, a second baby girl in Britain has been attacked and killed by the family pet dog.  Only yesterday six day old Eliza-Mae from Wales, was mauled by an Alaskan malamute,  considered docile and having never showed aggression.  Exact circumstance has yet to be reported and for now the dog is still alive.

Nine days prior, a beautiful 11 month old baby, Ava-Jane from Blackburn in England, was mauled to death by her mother's partner's pit bull.  The baby had been asleep and settled upstairs for the night when the dog pounced for 'no apparent reason'.  This breed of pit bull is prohibited in Britain and the owner faces prosecution for that fact alone.  This dog had a reputation for being a menace in the neighbourhood and was, ironically, called Killer!  It was immediately put to sleep.

I grew up with Golden Retriever dogs that my father and brothers took on hunting and fishing trips.  They were the friendliest and most obedient dogs in the neighbourhood but if family and friends visited with any really young kids, the dogs were secured out back after a short supervised 'hello' from the children.  And let's be honest - some dogs need protecting from kids, so outside and away from the little terrors indoors was probably best all round.

All it takes is a bit of thought and consideration.  A new child, this squirmy and noisy thing brought into a territory out of the blue  (as was the case of little Ava Jane - it was her boyfriends' house the baby died in)  must confuse and upset a pet used to all the attention.  Even animals are jealousy prone.  No one likes their kingdom invaded.

Seventy-five percent of all dog attacks are made by the family pet.  These statistics have been around a while, as have horror stories been widely reported through media and yet the mixture of baby and risky dog continue to grow.  We see very young parents pushing a pram, accompanied by a pit bull or rottweiler!  That seems to be an absolute must here in Scotland!  Some have even lied to breeders their child status on purchase of the animal!  The under five warning is disregarded in desperation of owning a Staffy!

No matter how well we think we know our pets, instinct is always part of them.  Even the most docile and trusted dog can have an off day, feel ill and wane from it's usual nature.  These babies stood no chance in those powerful jaws. What a way to die.  Pity some owners put pet and offspring under the same regard.


Geo. said...

Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to convince owners of powerful, independent, therefore unpredictable dogs that they are the least bit dangerous. Here, Rottweilers, pit bulls, wolf-hybrids are invariably described by their owners as "sweet-natured", even after they've killed someone.

Catfish Tales said...

Totally agreeing with you, Helena. Good write!

Optimistic Existentialist said...

As much of an animal-lover that I am, I confess I would never have a dog if I had a child, not until they grew a bit older and out of toddler-hood.

Jon said...

Unfortunately, this same thing has happened numerous times here in Texas. I have always believed that small children shouldn't be around dogs or any pets, unless they are very CAREFULLY supervised. Animals are always unpredictable.

Rob From Amersfoort said...

That's an awful story. I don't know much about dogs (we always had cats at home). Some people can be very negligent inceed.