When Good Dogs Go Bad….

Yesterday, we had the a doggy play date with the dog down the street. His dad likes to bring him down here so he can smoke his stinky cigars and get some time away from his 4 chitlins and wife.

Oreo really likes Valentino or Tino for short. They have played since Tino was a puppy and he is nearing 1 1/2 years now. They really like to get their inner rough house on, often rolling around, biting and growling at each other.

Tino’s dad has decided not to neuter him, not because he wants Tino to be a dad, but because his dad thinks it changes the personality of the dog. I don’t not agree fully. I agree that it make a dog a bit more passive, that is all.
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Our boys are both neutered. I’ve always neutered my dogs. It was never a question to do it or not, I just did it.

Breck is the elder dog at seven, with Oreo at four. Breck is the dominant dog, although he rules the house in a calm, controlled manner. Breck rarely raises his voice at Oreo, a low growl is all he needs to say, ‘Quit it!!”

Breck isn’t much of a rough houser. He likes to run around, however no chewing-up necks and such. The three of them were playing chase in the yard when Breck stopped and Tino grabbed onto his head. I happened to step outside the moment he got ahold of his head. I knew something wasn’t right and started full bore running at them. Ran right out of my shoes! Breck started to squeal the moment I arrived. I grabbed Tino’s collar as my husband and Tino’s dad arrived. Tino had Breck tight and wasn’t letting go. I held Breck while Tino’s jaw was pried off my boy’s head.

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These photos were taken the next morning. Too traumatized to take photos that night! We took him to the emergency vet. They were able to (super) glue his ear closed, opposed to stitching it.

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Super glued ear.

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His other puncture wound.
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My Bro & his girlfriend came over for late Christmas tonight. Here’s the funny shirt I got! What timing, Right?!?!

I personally think Tino, in his pubescent hormone rage, decided to go after the dominant dog to challenge him. Yes, Tino is a pit bull. They do NOT have locking jaws, however, they do have very strong jaws. I’m not an animal expert, however I’d lay a strong bet on this theory.

© Ilex Farrell

69 thoughts on “When Good Dogs Go Bad….

  1. It seems sad that that Tino’s Dad is ignoring all the pet advice that vets and other experts are currently offering regarding responsibilities with dogs and cats. I have heard numerous stories where an “intact” male will be aggressive towards a neutered male. Similarly many off-leash dogs can cause a problem with a leashed dog, but the cavalier attitude of ignoring our local dog-leash By-Law prevails. People can be disappointing at times as they are clearly not considering the impact that their decision may have on others.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree.
      I’ve actually somewhat expected this, however I thought it would be Oreo, not Breck. Oreo is the one that plays with Tino and they do get a bit rough.
      I sure hope the almost $400 bill he’s paying will get him thinking.

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  2. I’m very sorry to hear about this. Poor Breck!
    I couldn’t agree more on the neutering of dogs, when still young. Unfortunately, as I read this, it may be too late to make any difference to Tino’s behaviour, even if he were neutered now.
    Sounds like a dominance fight, like you say. The unusual thing is, dogs mostly sort out the dominance without resorting to an actual fight; or if it does get that far, again, it is mostly noise, and rarely bites.
    Very sad, but I doubt the two dogs can be together now without close supervision. Those are serious bites, from a strong dog. I don’t blame the breed at all, just that you have to be more vigilant in training your strong breed dog that can do this sort of damage in an instant. If Tino had been neutered as a pup maybe this wouldn’t have happened?
    Interesting to hear about the super glue as oppose to stitches.
    And wishing Breck a speedy recovery – and you and the rest of your family too! It shakes you to the core!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was a traumatic thing, granted you run in instinct when you are breaking up the fight, it’s after when you stressed out, cry and then get angry.
      I also agree with you that Tino may have a longer recovery of not wanting to chew up other dogs. The ‘ol ‘tasted blood’ theory. Once a fighter, it’s hard to come back. It will be a bit b4 they get near each other.
      I’ve known about the super glue to seal cuts before. . Works well on finger cuts. Learned this from my surgery nurse friend.

      Liked by 2 people

      • It was more the “not letting go” that bothered me. I don’t know why people refuse to neuter their males. It isn’t kind to keep an intact dog and not let it mate. Granted, a few dogs seem fine, but mostly they are much happier Not having testosterone coursing through their body!
        Hopefully Breck will bounce soon 🙂

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  3. wow that was really a timing… the shirt is all what you needed that moment. I hope so much Breck has no pains and the wounds will heal up soon and the super glue will help his ear ( that stuff is awesome, the glued my mom’s fingertip back once and it worked till my cut it off again…what a nut!)

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    • Isn’t the shirt a hoot? What timing! When they came over, they hadn’t known what had happened. She almost didn’t give me my gift. I use humor as a happy drug… I thought that shirt was hilarious and the timing impeccable!
      Super glue is better than duct tape in uses IMO!
      Maybe mom should stay out of the kitchen! 😨

      Like

    • I’m not against non-neutered dogs, if you intend on breeding them. They also must be trained and the owner know how to control them. My neighbor knows none of the above.
      Not all ‘intact’ (or neutered) dogs are bad, it really comes down to training and the dog’s general personality. My dogs are very passive, their breed usually works with sheep and you can’t have a bunch of chewed up sheep! Tino is used for protection. He must have felt Breck was a danger of some sort and attacked.
      So the answer to your question is; yes, with a LOT of training, they can be controlled.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Yup, that’s a dark thought! I had only stepped outside to get some air and it started. Had I not needed to go out….
      They have known each other for about a year. Never expected this.
      Breck had his large cousin over yesterday (my brother’s lovable fixed female bull mastiff) and he seemed fine, thank goodness. It will be a bit before the bully comes over. .. if at all.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. oh my goodness. I’m so sorry you and your dog went thru such an unpleasant and bloody experience. My dogs were neutered because I adopted both of them from a shelter in Houston and that’s the law. Good luck to Breck.

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  5. I am glad that your dog is going to be OK. There are too many stories of “bad dogs” going on the attack, in most cases, I blame the owner.

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    • Toooootally blame the owner!!
      He hasn’t brought him to school, knows anything about training and spends little time with them. Not a type of owner for a pitbull. A nice little poodle, maybe, but that would be too much for him, also… probably!

      Like

  6. If I were you there would be no more play dates. Once the pit got the better of your dog that was just the beginning. Much to risky to allow that to happen again. I didn’t get if the pit is neutered or not. He sure needs to be if he isn’t.

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  7. Oooooh, poor doggie! Good thing you were right there! It really ticks me off that there is this huge movement to un-demonize pit bulls. As an emergency department pediatrician, I have seen such horrible injuries to children from pit bulls “raised in the house from puppies, the most loving animals…” until they open their gaping maws and fasten them on the child’s face. I have seen skulls punctured by lovely loving pit bull teeth, faces pulled almost off…unbelievable. I have NEVER seen a Border Collie bite…have you??? Maybe if it was wounded and you tried to move his broken leg, but even then it would be a “warning nip,” not a full-frontal attack! I hope the cigar-smoker paid your vet bill! I myself would probably have a little treat for the pit…too bad, too sad, bye bye. Grrrrrr.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I fully agree.
      All of them are still animals. The shape of a pitbull’s face / jaw makes for great leverage and power. Borders can’t cause that kind of pressure.
      Yes, Mr. Cigar did pay the bill. We’re also not allowing the dog over again. We just went thru a similar situation with my sis in law’s dog, a large mutt. First he bit another dog, then grandma, then sis in law, then mom and finally, he ripped sis in law’s face up. They did give the dog to a troubled dog shelter, however her scars will be there forever.
      I’m not trusting that dog near my fur children again. I just can’t take that chance. I fearlessly (stupidly) jumped in the middle of that fight. I obviously didn’t care about myself for that 30 seconds, but boy, had I been bit. … I pity the fool who bites me! !

      Liked by 1 person

      • What I find totally incomprehensible is anybody with a dog who, after it’s first bite, does nothing! Not only are they gambling on other people’s health, but they are also jeopardizing the future of their own dog! I can understand the dog owner explaining the unusual circumstances of the bite incident, but that does not negate the fact that the dog bites inappropriately. Perhaps next time it will be a small child on the receiving end of a troubled dog?

        We saw a behaviorist in order to get some insight into handling our beloved Ray and a muzzle was suggested based on his reactive tendencies. We asked whether getting him to wear a muzzle would be difficult and the answer surprised me. “Teach him to wear it like you would to teach him to do anything else and he will be fine. The problem with a dog wearing a muzzle is almost always the dog owner!”

        The best news of all though (at least for Ray), is that people do not tend to rush up to him and touch him! He really likes his “space” with strangers and so is very happy to wear his muzzle and (bonus) he always gets treats once it is put on him; when it comes off; and as desired in between!

        If anybody is contemplating a muzzle for their dog, please DO NOT get the fabric style that wraps around the dogs mouth. They are generally used by vets and are designed for very short term control. We use a Baskerville (brand name) which allows him to eat (small size treats), drink, bark if necessary but still prevent a bite.

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        • I again, can’t agree with you more. My sis in law’s face has scars that are 4″ long. This dog had bit 4 others. WTF?! (excuse me). How many times does he need to attack?
          I’m all for trying to rehabilitate a dog with these type of issues, but this is for a professional to take on or a dedicated fur parent, not a guy that doesn’t have time.
          I had a chowchow long time ago. He haaated the vet. They would try to muzzle him in those stupid cloth things. Chomp, muzzle in two. Our solution was to trap him face first in the door, leash thru crack, so doc could give shots et all in the rear.
          Not to bait you here, but there is more to this story about Breck.. Stay tuned!

          Like

      • Yikes! The multiple biter…if it was me, it wouldn’t be no shelter. My second Great Pyrenees (the first one was amazing, fit the breed standard exactly, sweet protector of kids, home, and livestock) killed all four of my sheep and tried to rip my face off. Bye-bye! Even the vet’s assistant wanted to take her home because she was so cute…and so huge and murderous. It was like the Hound of the Baskervilles. I too am fearless. When she came at me I grabbed her by her ruff and yanked all 90 lbs of her off the ground, dragged her to a post and tied her up. She was only 8 months old at the time. The whole story is too long for here, but it was quite the mystery, about what was causing the sheep to die, each with four holes punched in its face. I’m lucky not to have four holes in mine.

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    • My border collie didn’t bite me when I was bathing him with the hose the other day but he did lunge at me with his claws out. It’s summer here so hose is quite typical and it was on shower. He was fine once I buried the nozzle in his fur. He was also quite nervy when the pet groomer turned up to clip him but after some extensive gentle tlking and rapport building, he came round.

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  8. Wow, not cool. I agree with you that this is a dominance issue. I also agree that Tino should be neutered, and it may or may not help but keeping him intact is not going to help. Hearing about how they play now I’m thinking could be a sign to this aggression. Sometimes dogs play and they just play but then other times the play, while still play, starts to get a bit more rough. To my knowledge that could be evidence that there is more going on there.

    My dog, a female mutt, is female aggressive, she definitely has some alpha bitch issues just not all the time. When I first got her I took her over to my mom’s house where she has a female boxer around the same age. I let my dog off leash into mom’s yard with her dog. Within a couple minutes they got into a fight. We separated them but then let them back together and everything was okay. They did fight again quite viciously actually but that was over a bone. Aside from that my dog has stayed over at mom’s often and they play a lot. However the Boxer’s way of playing is a bit rough for Omni, like she doesn’t have good play etiquette, and Omni will frequently snap at her when she gets tired. Then there’s the time I had her in the doggie area at my apartment. There was another more dominant female in there. When all the dogs gathered around the gate to greet another dog tensions rose and my dog and the other female got into it real bad. Her owner was not too wise in that she kept reaching down to try and pick up her dog! Goodness she’s lucky she didn’t get bit, I couldn’t help but tell her after it was over never to do that again. Anyways, my dog fights other females when they challenge her back. Less dominant dogs will take the hint – the stiff posture, low growls etc – and back off, whereas dominant dogs will take it as a challenge, like mine.

    My dad had a Great Dane while my little brother had an Olde English Bulldogge. Very different sizes though the Bulldogge was a meaty MF. One day while the GD was a pup the Bulldogge tried to dominate him by getting on top of him when he was laying down. It was all downhill from there. They became mortal enemies to the degree that when my brother would bring him over (my parents were divorced) then leave the GD would charge to his room growling at his scent. My dad was unable to detach them during one fight, really bad stuff. The GD wasn’t neutered (dad’s sympathetic towards his spoiled brat ;)) and the Bulldogge was later though it didn’t change things.

    My long-winded post is to share some of my own experiences with dog aggression and also to show that dominance is a huge factor in dog interactions. It seems that maybe Tino is growing up and trying to establish his rank. Perhaps his relationship with Oreo is understood due to their regular play and Breck was still open-ended. OR maybe Breck was annoyed with him, growled to say “Chill out” and Tino responded with violence. I’m by no means anti-Pit Bulls, I know the fault is in the people who have them. I hope your friend rethinks what he is and isn’t doing; it’s no fun when dogs can’t be around other dogs. Even if you let him back to play with Oreo keep an eye on the way they play. Does Tino ever try to mount Oreo or is he always jumping on his back when they play, trying at least? If Oreo is on the ground does Tino try to stand over him? These are often signs of one dog trying to dominate the other.

    And that shirt is too funny, the timing scary ironic. Sorry for the essay! 😉

    Like

    • Thank you so much for sharing your stories!
      My Akita was female dom. Out of no where, after being socialized and no previous issues, at the age of 5, she decided she didn’t like other females. ?
      I do feel you’re right about the open ended/not solid rank between Tino and Breck. Oreo and Tino had been playing for a solid hour before I let Breck outside, and it happened soon after.
      I’m not anti-pit either, however, if you own a dog that has the capacity to rip your face off, the owner had better be responsible to train, spend time with and know dogs in general. Mr. Cigar goes not know this. Socializing his dogs consists of bringing them here, that’s all.
      The way O & T play seemed harmless to me. Both were talking a dom then passive position and seemed about even. Both were on backs, then one on other…. Even the sounds they emit were not on ‘that’ level.
      Welp. I’m not sure what the future will hold for Tino. Mr. Cigar has 4 (3 small) children. As of last night, he can’t seem to produce T’s dog tag, swears he’s had his shots, tho. Very not cool! He’s looking at $100 ‘ s in fines. That will be another post. I need to vent and I do like (for good/bad) to use my blog for that!
      Again, thank you for sharing your experiences. I’ve been rather lucky to have little dog fight experience. 😀

      Like

      • I’d always heard about how female dogs are…catty, lol, not unlike female humans. Growing up though we had male dogs. My first female was a very timid boxer who had been neglected and most likely abused. She also had heart disease so she had no interest in kicking anybody’s butt!

        The fact that Breck had just been let out shines TONS of light on the situation, in my opinion. It seems even more likely that Tino was already worked up from playing, saw a new guy just bust up on the scene, and played the part of bully/king of the yard.

        People are lazy with dogs. My dog isn’t the most well-trained I’ll admit but I’m also not dealing with an aggressive breed. I don’t think it’s ever good when someone gets a dog for protection, you have to wonder about their stake in the welfare of the dog, part of welfare being the dog’s understanding of where it ranks in its pack. I pray his children aren’t at risk and that he starts to do things differently. If something happens it’s more than likely the dog will be blamed. 😦

        I can picture your dogs playing and the fun they were having. At the least he should be able to provide vet records that show it’s had shots. Hopefully this situation doesn’t get any worse. Best of luck to you!

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  9. What an unpleasant story!! I hope Breck is OK – Choppy would suggest that a treat (or twenty) would go a long way to feeling better.

    And good luck dealing with the neighbor – from your comments, it doesn’t sound like that will be the easiest task, either.

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    • Breck is feeling much better now! He does get many treats as his medication requires food in his belly. I had to speak with the county today, as they don’t take biting (even dog on dog) casually. Tino’s owner is in for a rude awakening… His already $400. bill will go up a few vet visits for his dog, along with registration fees, which are 6X higher for an unfixed dog.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Glad Breck is on the mend! Mr. Cigar sounds like just the irresponsible dog owner type that needs a big fat fine to get his head out of his *rse for a moment. My last Schutzhund (dog sport) dog Ivan, who also served as my service dog and as a therapy dog for a nursing home for intellectually challenged children, was an unmodified German Shepherd. He was so well trained that we competed on fields with females in season, and he never even offered to go near them. We went to a birthday party with 20 five-year-olds with Down Syndrome, and they all piled on top of him. It was like a mosh pit with Ivan at the bottom. Not a peep out of him. All he did was, when he could get his face out for a breath, he looked at me like, Mom, how long do I have to do this???? I never, ever, ever let my dogs off lead or out of the kennel until I have the recall so rock solid that they’ll turn in mid-air to my “HeeeeeeeEER!” even if they’re chasing a squirrel. If they don’t do that, on lead they stay. My current little one has not one but two microchips, one domestic and one international since for some reason the Avid chips don’t read on other countrys’ readers. So why don’t we just use the international ones in the first place??? I digress. What I’m trying to say here, in a long-winded fashion, is that in very specific and very controlled circumstances I am not against leaving dogs intact. But to just leave a pit bull intact, with all the lovely aggression hormones, just because Mr. Cigar is too effing lazy or negligent to either rigorously train or “fix” him, is something he needs to pay, and pay, and pay for. AND if I had a sport dog that I really needed to have that extra “oomph” but I did not feel was safe to be a pet and play with other people or animals, and for some reason I was really attached to keeping him, he would stay in the kennel, come out for training and competition, and go back in the kennel afterwards. BTW (if you’re still reading :-D) I did have a German Shepherd female that I actually imported from Germany as a sport dog who went blind (another story) and bit my ex-husband when he came to pick up our son and forgot to knock on the door, just walked in, and Carmen hauled off and bit him good (no serious damage, just a scrape through his jeans)–I had her put down, because I couldn’t trust her not to start biting my kid’s friends etc, and didn’t want to sentence her to the kennel for life……….OK, I will stop now………(dog trainers have a hard time shutting up about dog aggression issues 😛 )

        Liked by 1 person

        • It does all come down to the owner’s capability of training the dog to be polite in public. Neutered or not, big or little, boy or girl.. They need to know the rules.
          There’s also those ones that have ‘read’ the body language of the owner and had deemed that owner unworthy. Ie, they trained it to bite, in not so many words. That’s what I feel went on with my sis in law’s dog. They had gates all over the house to keep 2 dogs separate and also away from a child. Taught that dog to protect its boundaries. No surprise she looks like the Joker from Batman.
          I will have a follow up post about the final consequences of the situation. The county has contacted him and is supposed to call me back with what action they are taking. He needs to produce rabies records which I’m not sure he can do. Tino will need some vet visits, quarantined and surely will be fined. This county really nails you for wanting an intact dog by upping the license fee from $25 (neutered) to $150.
          My guess when they are done with him, he’ll have paid about $600. On top of the $400 at the vet. Ouch. No sympathy for him tho. You want to play, you need to pay! Woof! 🐾

          Liked by 1 person

          • Hey how did you get those cool paw prints? Dog owners. There’s two kinds, responsible, and powder kegs. I got bitten by a dog in India and had to get rabies shots. I am now immune to rabies! Like, hot damn. I would rather not have gotten bit in the first place . Damn dog jumped out of a hedge where he was apparently lying in ambush! Hope Bully Boy has fun in quarantine.

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      • Glad to hear he is feeling better! And I can’t imagine not getting the dog fixed. I know there are so many places where there are already more pits than they can deal with in terms of adoption. All it takes is for a dog like Tino to get out once and have a good time and the problem is just exacerbated.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m sure your diagnosis is spot-on. Poor Breck!!! His beauty will not be long marred, though. I did my own superglue stitches when I cut myself several years ago and the scar is only barely visible when I look for it. Tino, however, will bear the scar of ignominy until he is trained out of his adolescent need to assert himself overmuch. Teenaged hormones. What a drag, eh! Seems to me he should be sentenced to wear both the T-shirt and the cone until his manners improve. 😀
    Hugs to Breck!
    K

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      • Us docs superglue people all the time. Now it comes in special vials that cost, like, a thousand dollars per; but all they are is superglue work blue coloring in an ampule. I use superglue whenever the right kind of wound shows up. One time I had to go rescue some worker who had superglued both his hands to a table (who gets the “stupid” award???) So it was my job to get him off the table and into the hospital. I whittled him free with my Rambo knife. I don’t know how the folks at the hospital got it off.

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          • Actually it was a worker in a factory who glued himself. I was initially an EMT who responded to the call. It took some time for us to finish laughing our asses off before we could settle down and cut the poor guy loose off the table. Paper cuts? That means you actually work with paper! Amazing!!!

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    • It was pretty traumatic, running into a dog fight.. just like they tell you not to do =O It was my baby that was getting gnawed on, tho. He’s doing SO much better now! I’ve just about finished my sequel post, the cost of having a dog like that. Super glue is the best, better than duct tape IMO!!

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  11. Pingback: When Good Dogs Go Bad – The Conclusion | Midwestern Plants

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