(sigh).........

I have a couple of post that I've been working on trying to get up the past few days, but between David finding some new stock something or other and fighting over the computer with him, and a few things on my mind now, I haven't been able to get them out. I promise Mom, the picture I told you about will be posted soon.

Anyways.......

One of those things.......Bella (our dog) attacked Olivia.

To say it has really unnerved me is an understatement.

Yesterday afternoon, I was trying to keep Olivia entertained for the last few minutes before we needed to leave for church. Bella was laying on the couch in her usual spot, so I told Olivia "let's go play with Bella." We went over there and were playing and petting her for a good 10 minutes. Nothing that we haven't done a thousand times before. Olivia was climbing on and off the couch like she always does and I guess, from what I saw out of the corner of my eye, Olivia was trying to climb onto the couch on the side of Bella closest to the couch arm. I don't know if she maybe used Bella to try to pull herself up or if maybe Bella was just feeling too crowded, all I know is that Bella suddenly snapped at her face. Thank God, I was right there. I just screamed and grabbed Bella's collar and threw her out the back door. It was so quick and sudden, that's the only thing I could think to do. Olivia didn't cry or anything, I think she was in shock of it all and our sudden actions, but she does have bruises on her face where Bella did get her. Thankfully, the skin wasn't broken or anything that require medical care.

The scary part.......If Bella had broken skin or gone any deeper, Olivia would probably no longer have a right eye.

I'm being dead serious.

The bruises are exactly above and below her eye, barely missing her eye socket. If Bella would have chomped down......my daughter would no longer have an eye.

So, you can see why I've been so unsettled. I know life is full of "what could've happened" and you can spend your days wondering, but it's hard for me to look at her little face and see those bruises and not think....what if???

Last night after we got home from church and I had called my mom (cause that's what we always do right? call mom), I got upset and blamed myself for it all since I was the one who wanted a dog and basically picked Bella out.

David was trying to console me and said to me "your her mom, not her guardian angel...."

I snickered and told him "you will never convince any mother of that."

So, after talking to a few people that we know have had similar issues, we've decided that we don't want to consider this a one time thing and we will be getting rid of Bella. That is just a chance we're not willing to gamble with. We went back and forth for awhile last night on the fact that we realize the importance of teaching Olivia about animals and their personal space, but next time, it could very well be her eye.

Honestly, if we would have still had a gun in the house at the moment, this problem would have been quickly taken care of not even moments after it happened. For now, Bella has been outside and will remain outside until we can get rid of her. We will be calling the pound today that we got her from to see what our options are. And yes, in case your wondering, she will be put down. When you try to get rid of a dog, that is the first question they ask you. If the dog has attacked anyone, they walk them right back and put them down. I'm an animal lover, but I totally understand and agree. It's not a chance you can take.

Lesson learned is that no matter how sweet the dog is, every dog has their limits. Bella has been the sweetest dog from day one and Olivia is always playing with her and loving on her and Bella just usually sits there and takes it. We are constantly telling Olivia to be gentle and soft with her. We are constantly showing her the correct way to treat the dog, so please no comments saying we needed to teach Olivia better the correct way to treat the dog. I know dog will be dogs and some might feel it's not Bella's fault, but it's my job to protect my child and that's a chance I will not take. Several asked why Buddy (our lab) was put outside, it was because he started growling at Olivia on a regular basis and we didn't want to risk it, so he became an outside dog (and then got out of the fence and ran away). This was before Olivia could even crawl, so it just goes to show that's it not always the child's fault.

We'll probably wait a couple more years when Olivia is old enough to understand that animals need their space, to get another dog. But for now, we're giving up on family pets.

Comments

The Popes said…
I'm so sorry you're going through this. What a awful and hard choice to make.

Olivia is the priority and you'll have plenty of time to teach her about animals
Elizabeth said…
I totally agree with what you're saying and doing. I know that if we had a baby and Kaci and/or Buck did that, no questions asked they'd be gone. I think its just another example in life that hard things will come about that you have to pick which is the right thing to do no matter how difficult or hard it may be. It's definitely something Mike and I will have to consider when we bring a baby in to our home, what would we do? I hate ya'll are going through this. :(
Tristan said…
aw...this is just so sad.
i would feel awful..as i'm sure you do.
ugh..

i've had a house dog for 5 years and she growled when we brought t-a home from the hospital and she was out the next day...she loves it outside though!

sad that poor bella would be put to sleep..but she just can't go around snapping at babies :(
Melissa said…
So, I have to disagree with you on returning Bella and/or putting her down. First of all this is the first time she has snapped. She could have not been feeling well, she could have had to much, there are several reasons that can cause her to snap. And, yes, she could have just snapped to snap. But you don't know that for certain yet. Secondly, how is Olivia ever supposed to learn how to treat and not treat a dog. Yes, they are animals and not humans but they still need to learn boundaries. Olivia needs to learn how to pet and play with Bella, and Bella needs to learn how to properly respond when she has had enough. This will happen with any other dog you get. We have 4 dogs between my parents and I and they snap at certain things. A year after getting my male dog I am still having to train him. It takes time and patience and training. Not knee jerk reactions and decisions.
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