A really bad Thursday night...dog related...

So, on Thursday night, we settled into watching Attack of the Clones (what a slog). About 30 minutes in, we heard a ruckus (lots of barking) in the backyard. Both dogs, Opie (13 lbs terri-poo) and Simon (65 lbs husky/lab) were out, and we all sort of assumed that someone was walking their dog along the fence. But it sounded different, so my daughter went to check and started screaming. Simon had attacked Opie, who was now bleeding and limping his way to the backdoor.

I scooped up Opie and brought him in, immediatly assessing it as far too serious for any kind of home medicine and wrapped him in a blanket. We found a vet closeby that was open for another few hours and they took him to try and stabilize him. His throat was a bloody mess, I ended up having to throw out my clothes from that evening. They were able to stabilize him so we could make it to the emergency veterinary hospital about 30 mins away. The vet wasn’t optimistic. He thought the trachea was damaged and possibly the spinal column.

The emergency vet was amazing. I signed the consent form for his care and kissed his head and told him to hold on and left. I am not usually an overly emotional person, but I love that littke guy. He had been my confidant and my ever present shadow - so much so that it’s a running joke in our family. He even chose to come to me once, instead of getting bacon from my daughter. I’ve owned a lot of dogs, but I have never had one so singularly devoted before. He is just as happy on a training run with me, as curled up beside me when I have a migraine.

As well, the last time I held someone/thing I cared about as they bled in my arms, they died. This year has been brutal, dealing with a sexual assault, PTSD and other issues, I needed him to be okay.

I cried for hours. At 1:30 am, the vet called to say he definitely suspected neuro/spinal issues. I got about an hour of sleep, convinced that I was going to have to say goodbye in the morning.

At 8:00 am (I wanted to let my daughter sleep a bit, we were all upset), we made our way back. I let her know that we may be saying goodbye, and that she didn’t have to stay if they were going to put Opie to sleep. I also told her sometimes animals let you know that they want to be let go too.

Well, the little bugger was not only weakly wagging his tail, but crawled/pulled himself as close as he could in the crib they had him in. The vet gave me the great news that they no longer thought spinal/neural and he may be okay. I got to hold and cuddle him for the first time on Saturday night and it was awesome. He gave a long relaxed sigh and snuggled right in.


Now, my other dog, Simon.

We don’t know what caused the attack. I know he was displaying more defensiveness/aggression and we stopped taking him off-leash at the dog park. In the summer a non-thinking owner let a Momma pit bull off leash while Simon was playing nicely with her puppy. She attacked him. We were working on re-socializing and deflecting him but with the cold temps this week, we were all getting a bit stir-crazy. He is a husky cross, so high prey-drive. Final potenial piece, our rescue kitten unexpectedly went into heat, so both dogs (neutered) were a little weird last week.

Simon is an amazing dog. He had a rough start, he was found as a orphan at three-four weeks in a Northern community. It is breaking our hearts to re-home him, but we can’t bring the little dog home to recover with him here.

A loving pet. A 65 pound “lap dog”, he sits, lays down, drops it, leaves it, speaks and “whispers” on command. He is crate trained, but sleeps every night on my daughters bed. He plays fetch, soccer and hide and seek. He loves running, especially trail running. After the attack, he spent several hours laying on the carpet, with his head in Opie’s crate, whining. Prior to the attack at the dog park, he was great with other dogs and loved to run and play. Still, I know if I brought him to the SPCA, they will consider him unadoptable and put him to sleep. I am working hard to find a home, or even a foster home, and working with several rescues. Fingers crossed.

I’m glad Opie’s ok and terribly sad about Simon. It might have been an accident, given the disparity in their size. Regardless, I hope you’re giving the rescues the full run down and telling them that Simon can’t be allowed offleash with other animals.

Absolutely. I am being totally and completely honest about it all, including the severity of the wounds. I still think he is an awesome pet, but an awesome ONLY pet.

I am so sorry to hear this. Best wishes for a full recovery for Opie, and for finding a good home for Simon.

I’m sorry you had to go through this. And wish your little guy a speedy recovery.

I was walking my leashed dog when an unleased Husky mix attacked. Her entire head was inside the Husky’s mouth. Her blood was everywhere. Raced her to the vet, left her for surgery, assuming she lived that long. She was the dog of dogs for me, and my house was so empty that night. She recovered. Vet said she was very lucky to be alive as another crunch and her carotid would have been severed. The Husky mix was euthanized, fortunately without my having to insist.

As much as your heart is breaking, please consider that re-homing a problem dog may not be the best decision. The Husky mix had been rescued. It had attacked other dogs. Yet the owners not only kept it but allowed it to run loose because, gee, it was great with kids.:smack: Another rescue dog I came in contact with was fine, unless you tried to restrain it by holding its collar. Color the adopting family surprised when the attack happened. Then there’s the rescued Little Rat Dog who launched himself at my face. And my niece’s rescue dog that despite a fortune spent on rehabbing had to be put down because it could not be trusted around kids.

I firmly believe that some dogs have bad experiences at a vulnerable stage in their puppyhood that affect them their entire lives. Simon missed out on a critical full month of being with his mom and siblings.

I commend you for rescuing him and working with him and loving him. I’ve just seen too many Shelter descriptions of dogs up for adoption who need a no kid or no other pets or quiet environment, or a separate place to eat.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a dog person through and through, but I consider such dogs to be accidents waiting to happen.

Good luck (she types kindly).

Just adding my sympathies, and hoping for a full recovery for Opie and a good new home for Simon.

And if you don’t mind a bit of levity: I at first thought it a bit odd that you kissed the emergency vet on the head.

You absolutely should **not **do a direct re-home. You are likely to face feelings of guilt or a civil suit down the road if it attacks a child or kills someone else’s dog.

I think it’s fair to leave this decision up to an animal adoption agency. Take it to the SPCA. If they don’t believe the dog can be trusted, then they will put it down. And this may very well be the right call!

At any rate, good on you for not keeping a known attack dog in your home. There are a lot of irresponsible pet owners who’d think they could handle it.


I do totally understand the concerns, and I am working closely with rescues and a few trainers. The SPCA is not an option, if I was going to do that, I would be signing his death warrant and I may as well cowboy up and pay a vet to do it while I pet his sweet head. This isn’t a guess, I spoke to the intake workers.

Yes, it’s awful what happened, and my heart is broken not only for the pain of Opie, but also the idea of losing Simon. In chatting with a lot of trainers, they agree that he could be a great pet, but not unleashed and not with small pets about. Up until last summer, he would regularly go to doggie daycare and when we left him at the kennel, they would take him into their home to play with their huskies. This is not a normally violent pet. The trainers feel that it was a combination of the earlier attack (putting him on defensive alert), the cat going into heat (raising the aggression level of the house) and not enough exercise since it was so cold. It was a terrible perfect storm.

I am working with some great rescues, that have a lot of experience with “northern” dogs from isolated communities, so they have a ton of experience, and I trust them when they say this can be worked on and doesn’t mean he is a lost cause.

In the meantime, don’t let the two of them hang together in your house or elsewhere. I weakened dog is sometimes too tempting to another dog who may attack again.
You might find a no-kill shelter and then could visit regularly, as most unadoptable dogs don’t get adopted! and die there if they aren’t lucky enough to fine a new owner.
Tough situation. Hope you find a solution.

Great News - Opie (little dog) is coming home tonight and Simon (big dog) is at his potential forver home.

I hope everything works out, but so far, so good. :slight_smile:

Sorry to hear about this, but looks like the little guy has made it through the ordeal. A friend’s dog once snapped and started attacking other dogs out of nowhere, no explanation, it just happened, they found someone to take the dog, just tough to deal with.

Glad things are working out (mostly)!

Had a minor doggy emergency here myself (looks okay now though).

Talk about a stupid lady at the vet. She had the sterotypical trailer park pit bull. It was barking its ass off at every person and pet there. Before too long the staff told her to take it outside. She claimed “It would never hurt anyone. And it has never bitten anyone”.

That what almost every bad dog defender says right before said dog goes Kujo on someone’s ass.

But the stupidity gets better.

She also followed that up with “I just got the dog”.

Jesus Christ on a cracker lady.

Tough week, Poysyn. I’m glad things appear to be on the upswing. So was the vet cute? :smiley:

Any chance on getting Kitty fixed soon?

I’m sorry this happened. Sometimes puppies need to be the only pet.

Ivylass - Kitty had an appointment to get fixed tomorrow, but now we will have to postpone it one payday - emergency vet care isn’t cheap :eek:

Swampspruce - Vet was meh - very nice but not to my particular taste.

Too bad, I am sure my bloody sweatpants and giant t-shirt saved from hubby’s backseat so I could change out of my bloody shirt was VERY alluring <<<— I may not have had the stereotypical pittie on the chain leash, but I definitely had the bag lady look going on. Dead sexy.

I’m glad Opie’s doing so well. Good luck to Simon. I hope he gets a happy ending.

You did a good job with this, Posyn.

Hopefully final update:

Opie- is home. He is doing okay. Very low-key, due to continuing pain meds. He did wake me up at about 4am shivering so hard. I had him in an electric blanket throw, but it auto-offs after 3 hours. I picked up a heating pad today, that way he can move on and off as needed. It’s so nice to have him home!

Simon- is at a home for a trial. It seems to be working well. The guy is a divorced Dad that has an adult son and a daughter that he sees every two weeks. He said flat out he hated coming home to an empty house and he was looking forward to going on lots of walks and runs. He is very active and kind, which is important because despite the attack, Simon is actually a very gentle dog. He also had labs and huskies in the past that were “crazy” and is impressed how well Simon is trained. The yard isn’t fenced yet, but he is doing that this summer. Also, he lives about six houses down, so my daughter can visit as she wants to - that wasn’t planned. I know him from the gym, it was a shock that he was so close.

Did you ever say how old the dogs were?

I must say that I found the following statement to be a little worrisome.

Like I said upthread it’s possible this was accident given the size disparity. Huskies play rough. A terrier poodle mix wouldn’t have the husky heavy coat either.