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Hi everyone, I need immediate advice about my German Shepherd/Belgian malinois mix, she has gotten us into trouble and my wife and I are so distraught and don’t know what to do. We moved to a new state for my wife’s work into a one bedroom apartment six months ago from a five bedroom house. We didn’t have much time to look for an adequate place for our dog bailey to play, so we only wanted to be here temporarily and we excersise her as much as possible. She’s 15 months old and has never quite grown out of her biting stage, although she has significantly progressed and just bites when playing. She also barks at people around the apartment complex and it’s an intimidating bark, but when people come up to her she just wants to jump on them and lick them. We have had construction workers working on our complex since day one and she barks at them the worst, and well, she slipped off her collar last Friday and ran towards a worker and jumped up and head butted his arm, but according to the worker she bit him and showed me a small dot sized mark on his arm that did not look like a dog bite, and the guy and his friends started talking in Spanish and saying they might have to take him to the hospital, but I knew they were exaggerating and were looking for an excuse to screw me over, but I was also at their mercy because my dog was the one who initiated contact. So they called animal control and we got slapped with a fine of 250$ for a permit to register her as potentially dangerous, on top of that we got a notice from our apartment that we have to remove her from the premises in ten days or get evicted. We don’t know what to do, she is our pride and joy and we love her so much, some people have suggested putting her down or re homing her, but both options have put my wife and I in constant tears just thinking about it. She’s so attached to us and can’t take being away from us and I would have an emotional breakdown if we had to put her down. Can anyone please give me any advice? We don’t know what to do. She’s such a sweet dog and yes she does get visicious if someone tries to take away a treat or bone but is instantly happy if you can distract her and get the item away. And yes she does bark at people a lot at home and gets super excited, when she bit that guy it was a play bite and not a viscous one, at the dog park she doesn’t bark at anyone and is actually the sweetest dog there. We just don’t know what the right thing to do is and don’t want to lose her.
 

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Have you asked in writing for a hearing to contest the dangerous dog designation? Have you researched the ordinances in your locale regarding dangerous dogs? Most importantly, have you hired an attorney? You really need an attorney to work through whatever the process is with AC and whatever administrative appeals are allowed -- it's all quite variable depending on local practices, so you need someone who knows what those are. If your state bar has an animal law section for the membership, they'll keep a roll of attorneys practicing in this area.


If you have a hearing, do you have a trainer who's worked with her who can testify? If not, why haven't you done some professional training, given the serious issues that you've described?



Hopefully you have renter's or canine liability insurance that covers her -- it's also essential. If you do, make sure the complex knows you have separate insurance for the dog.

If your dog ends up having to be given up to a shelter, she will be put down with this history in most places. She won't be put up for adoption. She's also unlikely to be a rescue candidate with an animal control history and dangerous dog designation. If this all proceeds as you describe, what about dog-friendly hotel lodging until you can find another apartment?
 

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holy cow, an attorney is your first course of action. Also check with Apartments.com. You might be able to find another place to move to. Other than that I have no clue.
 

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If the worst occurs, contact Julie through the Facebook site for the Malinois Ranch Rescue. If they have room they will take her. They have taken much more serious bite cases. They have fosters i other states and I have helped transport dogs that were being moved almost the entire length of the country. Prayers you can keep her.
 

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I don't know how viable this idea is...but if it could work out, you might consider a "board and train" facility that specializes in these kinds of dogs. It's pricey, but it gives her a safe place to stay while at the same time getting some excellent training that will help her mature into a more easily controlled dog. In the meantime, while she's "away at school" you can look for a more suitable living situation.

She looks like an awesome dog and I agree wholeheartedly that you shouldn't just give up on her!
 

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I live in Canada where we aren't quite so quick to sue, so advice I have echoes what others have said.
Hire an attorney first and start researching trainers because I agree that these are potentially serious issues. Buy a muzzle and make sure she wears it at any point when outside. Do you have an out of state relative or friend that can care for her short term while you find another place to live? I understand that moving is difficult but honestly you dropped the ball here, and I know that is not what you want to hear but it's the truth. You spoiled your dog, failed to train her, excused her behavior and then put her in a position that was guaranteed to go bad. So find a board and train that gets her out safely and find a new place to live. Last but not least get serious about training and control because she is doomed to fail if you don't
I am the worst dog owner ever, I encourage idiocy and condone foolishness, but under no circumstances would I take a dog that is known to jump and bite out in public without a muzzle. I will also suggest a martingale collar, they can't slip them so easily.

Good luck

I just reread your initial post. First you contradicted yourself so watch that, but also clarify this if you would please: If you fail to get the dog out in 10 days they evict? With how much notice? Because I don't know what it's like where you are but wouldn't letting them evict avoid issues with breaking a lease and can you find another place in time?
 

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Also in Canada, and on flip side re: questions about notice to move. Here a notice almost seems like an eviction. But a notice is just a notice to suggest and possibly get you out of lease if you have one or want to. Find out if there is a tenant board and/or tribunal that you have to go through a process first before being made to leave.
Where I am, you usually get a chance to rectify situation whether be rent arrears, damages, dog barking etc. The saying here is, a landlord cannot evict you, only the landlord and tenant board can. and they have to follow law.
As for muzzle advice. yes. and record. record all interactions and situations where dog is vocalizing to contractors.
My old guy was a good bad dog...when he went after contractors/renovators who were on break, he made a huge entrance into their lunch circle....but mostly to wait for mango guy.
Mango guy always came last, sat alone, and when almost done with his daily mango, he would share with Gator.
Other guys got jealous and tried to spoil him with pear and cheese and crackers.
But he was prevented from the circle at first. Until they warmed.
It was a great time for him
 

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I agree with what everybody else said. Try to find somewhere that you can board her in the interim.
 

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Get a lawyer. They may be at fault if they have set up an unsafe situation in your normal common area. Your dog was reacting to strangers in what she considers her home. If they allow dogs, they need to make sure there is a safe path for you to get around. A lawyer might be able to get them to reverse their decision.
 

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I too am sorry to hear this situation has happened. But honestly, I've never known a Mal that head butted anything, so for me that story is a little hard to swallow...if they run after it they bite it. That being said, it can be play, so designating your dog for a minor minor injury as "potentially dangerous" seems a little overzealous, whether it was a bite or not!

If it were me, I'd first buy your dog a good Martingale collar so that slipping the collar would NEVER happen again, and secondly I'd make every attempt humanly possible to make amends with this individual that was bitten!

At the same time I would also strongly dispute every aspect of the incident, and adamantly challenge the eviction warning (which translates into, stop posting about it publicly and get a lawyer!)! As far as I know, unless otherwise stipulated in your lease AND allowed in your state, 10 days is pretty short notice and usually not enforceable! But DON'T EVER LET SOMETHING LIKE THIS HAPPEN AGAIN!

I hope it works out well for you and your dog! But definitely learn from this incident. Work on training, and buy a collar that the dog can't slip out of!
 

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I'm just pointing this out for information that may not have occurred to you that I picked up on. Often times Company provided health insurance benefits require any (no matter how minor) injury that happens on a job be reported and be seen by a doctor. The friend of the person that your dog jumped on could very well have reverted to his primary language to explain it better to him. This may not help much other than seeing the other side and softening the cynicism.

I hope you can follow the advice already given and your dog doesn't suffer the full extent of possible outcomes.
 

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I hope you get out of the current mess. Have you considered a martingale to connect the leash to. It is not a correction collar, but it will prevent her from slipping her collar.
 

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I'm a bit unclear about the dangerous dog designation. Was there a hearing? Have you admitted fault? Did you give a statement at the time? Did the others involved give statements? You should be able to access all records You can almost always contest ruling higher up in the actual court system.

I'm not sure about malinois ranch rescue but very few "rescues" take in dogs with a bite history.

I'd try a board and train for temporary until you can find another housing situation. If it were me I'd live on National Forest land with my dogs rather than give them up, but that's no long term solution.
 

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If you are able to PM or post general location, there may be someone who can help you find temp placement for your dog while you find housing.
 

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I would talk with a lawyer being on the "other side" of a "play bite" by a 2 year old pit who went through a heavy winter coat to nick my skin I can tell you that it took an awful lot for anything to happen with that dog.

She had a problem as the dog continued to get loose and it mauled another dog. After 5 more calls by different people the dog was taken and PTS and I imagine a lot of what happens is going to depend on where you are living.

This dog actually WAS aggressive BUT your post has the same kind of language she used about her own dog so I think you need lawyer and real evaluation from good dog trainer. Julie Neal does know her mals.........

There is zero exuse for being 15 months and not past the biting stage. You need to ante up now and work with a very good dog trainer and show that you have fixed EVERYTHING and try to see what you and YOUR ATTORNEY can do to work through the dangerous dog because they would have (after all that) let this dog be declared dangerous but it would have cost her a special containment system,, and a high dollar liability insurance policy specific to the dog.
 

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My problem with "dog bites" is they are so subjective. What is a "bite"? If the dog did not break the skin, did not bruise the skin, didn't crush any muscle or bone, is it a bite? Really? Maybe the owner should get a ticket for dog off leash or dog at large or whatever they call it in that state/town. If this is the first and only time this has ever happened, a warning would be more fair. People running stoplights and actually endangering lives of numerous people can get off with a warning. This is far less severe.

If it happened again, sure go ahead and call the calvary.

In my opinion, this should have been a red flag warning to the owners that their dog can and will jump at and possibly bite a stranger. I don't think this is a dog who would full on actually bite someone- meaning break the skin with their teeth. I also don't think this is a dog who would be involved in a prolonged attack. So I strongly feel the dog should not die because of this.

I also wonder what would have happened to a lab, collie, small breed, if the exact same incident happened. There is a double standard for shepherds, rotties, dobies etc. I think this is why there should be very clear objective definitions of "dog bite". Everywhere.

Now, this isn't to excuse what happened. Obviously the dog needs training, needs to be on a secure leash, obviously. Nobody would argue with that.

But, if this "bite" required no medical attention, did not break the skin, rip clothing, bruise the skin or do any damage that is visible beside a red dot that may or may not be due to the dog, well then let's take a step back and give this dog and owner a chance to change.

I think everyone is on tip toes because of liability and I think there are many reasons for that and I'll avoid the elephant in the room there because this thread isn't about that.

But for this particular dog, if the incident actually happened as described by the OP, that "injury" is far less serious than injuries I've gotten from cutting carrots in the kitchen. Or from running into the side of a lab bench at work.

It really bothers me how liberal authorities are in the use of "dog attack" and "dog bite" and how poorly these are defined.

OP- I hope you can find a temporary solution and work with an experienced trainer to address these issues. It can't happen again, of course, but I'm sorry that such a minor incident may lead to the death of your dog. In my opinion, that is a tragedy.
 

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im really annoyed by owners who can't control their dogs.
aggressive dog? that's fine. AS LONG AS you can control it. strong leash, strong grip, and a fail safe collar, fully contained back yard, no half open front door, etc etc etc.

you let a dog out of your grasp and even though it may not have hurt the guy, the person on the other end could easily have been a kid or an elderly.

this is no fault of the dog, and i would be sad if anything were to happen to the dog.

sick and tired of people who let dogs off leash in a leash-only area, thinking their dogs are 100% safe.


going off tangent here but people should really learn to control their dogs. put a muzzle on, get a harness, lock the door, raise the fence, whatever it takes.

if i could, i would absolutely take the dog in my house and keep the dog for the time being while you guys get the situation under control. don't you have like family members who can do that for you?
 
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