A dog rescue organization in Canada has made national and international news headlines for what’s been noted as the “saddest dog in the world.” The rescue organization posted a picture of the dog looking sad. The picture went viral and the dog was subsequently adopted. It certainly sounds like a sweet story: abandoned dog gets rescued and adopted out to a family; everyone lives happily ever after.
However, there’s more to the story. According to a Facebook post on the rescue organization’s page, another family previously attempted to adopt the dog, but returned the dog within a few days of the adoption. The reason cited was “guarding issues.” Because there were young children in the original family, the dog was returned to the rescue organization.
The rescue organization noted, “Although her guarding issues were non-existent when she was adopted, they did recently begin to surface.” These types of observations are very common of dogs adopted from shelters and rescue organizations.
Dogs are great pets and additions to a family unit. However, even the sweetest, mild mannered dog can bite or attack someone. This is especially true of rescued dogs or dogs which come from shelters. How a dog behaves at a shelter or inside a cage is not a guarantee or accurate prediction of the dog’s temperament. Rescue dogs or shelter dogs often exhibit quiet, shy behavior initially, and then may show aggressive tendencies. The process of rehoming a dog often reveals new behaviors or aspects of temperament.
As a general rule, dogs from rescue organizations or shelters aren’t suitable for families with small children. That’s because these dogs need stability, and young children are usually unpredictable in their actions. And, the fact is that young children who are attacked by dogs often suffer injuries to the face, neck and head. These injuries are usually very serious and often lead to disfigurement. In many instances, the injuries are fatal.
This isn’t to say that a rescue dog can’t be placed in a home with young children. Taking basic safety precautions, like providing a safe space for the dog to go (i.e., dog crate, designated room, etc.) or feeding the dog away from other family activities, can help ease the transition and prevent dog attacks or injuries.
Our lawyers have extensive experience pursuing dog bite and attack cases. Please call the firm for a free consultation. 877.944.8396
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