Baby meets beagle

All I can say is, I hope that experience hasn’t prevented you from enjoying a relationship with a dog. It’s one of those things.

The relationships we have with dogs is something very special to me, and it hurts me right in the feels, perhaps what someone religious would call their soul, to know that an experience like that can end up making someone miss out on the special bond I get to enjoy every day with my own dog.

I know I shouldn’t try to convince anyone to like dogs. It’s just, that it’s something so good, it feels wrong that someone could be prevented from that kind of life experience.


Of course, it depends on the breed and its upbringing.
Our dog never lunges, and is of a breed that was specifically bred to be a watchdog and live in the house around children. But we would never for a moment leave him unattended with a small child, even though we suspect the child could poke his eye out before he reacted.


Some anthropologists have suggested that it was the human/dog symbiosis that enabled human development, followed of course by the domestication of cattle. Dogs and humans have lived together for between 17000 and 30000 years according to different estimates, and there is evidence that human societies that adopted dogs have been more successful than those that didn’t, for many reasons ranging from better hunting to garbage disposal (food waste that has been through the canine digestive system is much more sterile than food which has been through ours.)


What I meant was: I shouldn’t try to convince someone who’s had a traumatic experience to be okay with or like the thing that hurt them. It’s something that they have to come to themselves. No amount of dog-vangelism out of me is going to make someone with a fear of dogs like them.


How many people would be at risk of suicidal depression without the company of a dog? How many home invasions are thwarted or simply deterred by a dog’s presence? How many sheep would obliviously wander onto roads, potentially causing fatal automobile accidents? How many blind people would be dependent on the unreliable kindness of strangers to find their way around?

If those benefits come at the cost of 800,000 alcohol wipes and band-aids, that’s a small price to pay.


Some dogs just have a natural understanding of how to behave with puppies.

Watching this reminded me of the time we introduced a new cat to our dog. For three days the cat hissed and spit at the dog then finally, in the kitchen, rolled over on its back as though saying, “I give up! Do with me what you will!” The dog sniffed the cat’s belly then licked his ears. They were very close after that.

I don’t have human kids, but they’re still my children in spite of what their pediatrician keeps telling me.

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It is a miniscule price. If you made a list of all the things in this country that injure people enough to require medical attention, dog bites would be way, way, way down on that list. Are we supposed to ban everything that hurts people?


Keep living in fear. That’s your choice. But why would you want anyone else to live such a horrid life? Some of us have spent decades of our lives learning to live without such a toxic world view?

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Well - you can’t bubble wrap the world. Living includes taking risks. If those rewards out weigh the risk, I say go for it.

The risk is to the baby not the dog. I pity your dogs who can’t react like normal dogs when getting their paws “amputated”. A reaction caused by pain or fear doesn’t make a dog “bad”.

There were a few minor biting incidents with the dog when my kids were babies, but none left permanent injury and the dog always forgave them.


It’s not just a fear based view of life. Thunderhammer is aware of the possible ways your baby could be hurt, maimed, or worse by, yes, a beloved pet Beagle. If you were informed enough by contemporary progressive dog trainers you simply wouldn’t take the chance. What’s more important to you? Your feels or your baby? Both baby and dog need to learn to respect each others’ space and their bond will grow the way we all want it to as the baby becomes old enough to understand what that means. A little bit of pragmatism won’t stand in the way of their happy times together.

False equivalency. It’s more like riding to the park on a bicycle with the baby on the handlebars.

You’re an adult. You can make that decision for yourself. A baby relies on the wisdom or lack thereof of its parents.

Sure. But depending on the dog, you can quite safely have the two play together supervised. People are right that biting and worse can happen, but it is a tiny fractions of the millions of dog/human interactions per day.

Another human could hurt (accidentally or on purpose) a baby too. Does that mean you never let someone else hold it?

You’re missing the point. It’s not about unreasonable over protection. It’s about a sensible balance of interaction between the two and in this case, a baby, who doesn’t know the rules of dog etiquette yet and a dog who unbeknownst to the people around him might be suffering pain and react harsher than he normally would to the hanging on and other means of physical interaction that babies and toddlers use to explore that fascinating creature with 4 legs and floppy ears. They’ll have plenty of time to become best friends.


Last week while loading my dog into the car she yelped in pain and banged me under my chin with the top of her head. She didn’t mean to hurt me. It just happened. Imagine what a sudden push or whatever could do to a tiny baby. The movements of another human are much more predictable not to mention our ability to communicate our concerns (if we have any) is much easier.

Well, since you seem to dismiss the idea of objective risk analysis, I think we’ll have to agree to disagree that you actually know that these people you’ve never met are bad parents for allowing a dog you don’t know to get very close to a baby, which you’ve never had.

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It was hyperbole. Reacting to an annoyance with mouthing isn’t something I want my dog to do because it could result in injury to a toddler or infant. I trained out biting specifically to protect people who don’t know dog etiquette. Instead, my dog will moan, talk or draw back from noxious stimuli,rather than bite, or try to grab with the mouth, even though he’s a lab, a breed famous for being “soft-mouthed”.