Well, we always hoped this would not happen at our trial, but we had an incident on Saturday involving a female Aussie. She lunged and nipped at a child running by. Caused bruising and teeth marks through the boy's pants. Did not break the flesh though.
I'm on the Agility Committee. We had to meet and follow the AKC form to determine what to do about the dog. It was a very hard decision because it was an emotional one for us. After answering the questions on the form, the only real choice we were left with was to ban the dog from any further participation at AKC events. None of us wanted to do it, but it could have been a much worse scenario if the child had been smaller.
The AKC rep was there and he was very helpful in helping us through the process. He didn't sway us in any way, but made it very clear we could only base our decision on that one particular incident, nothing prior concerning the dog or the child, etc.
The child is dog savvy and was not upset or afraid of the dog. The biggest fear was that it would happen again and we all agreed that the dog was a danger to other dogs or children in a public setting.
So the handler and her dog were banned from our trial and ALL AKC events until she could get her dog re-instated. The rep said that usually takes 2 years.
It was an eye opener for me. The form we had to use was very specific on certain questions, and left little wiggle room.
oh man that had to be touch..I know when I was an officer of our club I was told if we had a bench hearing at our show I would need to be involved..Probably the same thing at our agility show...knock on wood I've never had to do one..
That's a tough one for sure, but it sounds like you did what you had to do.
Sally was attacked at a trial a couple of years ago - I was delighted the dog was banned from future competitions and VERY grateful I didn't have to be the one to instigate the complaint - the judge in my ring saw the whole thing and decided she would be the complainant - which probably added some authority to the statements.
Good (but difficult) call.
“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller
You did the right thing. IMO, too many people (esp those new to the sport, but not always....) are naive about their dogs' temperaments. I had a dog attacked on at least 3 occasions at agility trials back before the judges were given the authority to sanction for activities happening outside the ring. I was so happy when that change was made and saw some REAL positive changes in handlers and dogs.
All of our clubs will have a new influx of handlers and dogs potentially w/ the mixed breed allowance. I only hope that the instructors they are taking their agility and obed instruction from will give them some good honest assessments and guidance (like... no you aren't ready for competition until...). Anne
How horrible for the child and the dog's owner. Anyone I know?
Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
CDX, RE, WC, CGC, TDInc.
Nope. None of us knew her (the owner of the Aussie). I've seen the little boy at several trials. His mom dumps him off and basically ignores him. Fault was partly his but we really couldn't consider it as he didn't taunt the dog in any way, all he did was run by the dog, and the dog lunged and bit him.
It surprises me that people with reactive dogs stay in that sport. I removed my Dutch Shepherd because she was so dog reactive.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
I totally fault the handler/owner. Aussies are herding dogs. The owner admited that the dog "liked to nip and herd children". If that was the case, why in the hell was she sitting ringside with the dog and not crating it somewhere? Even after the incident the woman didn't leave her chair ringside. I think a normal person would have been distraught enough to at least have removed the dog to a safer area.
Having said all that, we couldn't take into consideration the "handler/owner's" actions, only the actions of the dog.
We were all pretty much thrown by the Aussie/herding thing, knowing it is natural for them to do this, we didn't want to ban her from events. But on the flip side we also knew had this been a "bully" breed, there would not have been much discussion at all, we would have banned it. That's terrible to admit as well, but all of us agreed on that point as well in our decision making process.
I hate to lay blame on a dog because the handler is ignorant, but you do what you are supposed to do.
I didn't want her dog lunging or biting my dogs either.
I am always stunned when I go to trials at the number of handlers that have their dogs out, and are engrossed in a conversation with someone and paying no attention to the dog at the end of their 6' leash. Sure, their dog may not have issues with other dogs but it is unlikely that they know anything about the dogs that handlers are trying to get by them. Sometimes I look at the path between us and the ring gate and feel like I am running a gauntlet. Any time a dog is out of its crate, it needs to be supervised. I can't believe how many handlers don't seem to realize that.
Ann & Miles
MACH ARCHEX "Miles" (DOB 3/10/2006) UD RAE MXS MJS OF CW-OB3 CW-ARF CW-AR CW-ZR2 CL-1 (DOB 3/10/2006)
"Hartley" (DOB 7/21/2012) RN CGC CW-OB1