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Discussion Starter #1
My B/F and I just had a HUGE fight over this...after I have repeatedly said that his 7 1/2, almost 8 year old daughter is not allowed to walk Tucker, he let her walk him while I was in the shower the other day....the best part...he told her if Tucker pulls and tries to chase something to "just let go of the leash"...are you F**** KIDDING?!?!?! I am SOOO mad...24 hours later, I am still stewing...his argument is that a human life is more important than a dog life...fine, I agree...THAT is why I don't think a child is physically large enough or responsible enough to walk a large dog. I even said "how would SHE feel if he pulled, you told her to let go of the leash and he got hit by a car?!"...I KNOW she would feel TERRIBLE...why burden her with that guilt over a few minutes of instant gratification?? He thinks I am neurotic and "over the top" about my dog...yes, I do love Tucker...and I have to say...if something happened to Tucker because HE made a stupid decision to let his daughter walk him, I would HATE him...and her...for life...no ifs, ands, buts, etc...HATE...I am sorry if that makes me a horrible person, but it is true...I have taken MANY falls over the years because Tucker saw something and bolted...was I mad, ABSOLUTELY but my broken nails, scratched knees, twisted ankles, etc are not as important as my dog's life...I would never let him get hit by a car because I was afraid of breaking a leg...would I throw myself in front of a car for him - no, but I would do EVERYTHING in my power to ensure nothing happens to him...I think that is part of being a responsible dog owner...

Ok...let me have it! Thoughts??
 

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A child that age should be allowed to walk a dog unsupervised. If an adult is along and the idea is to teach the child how to handle a dog fine but unsupervised is a very very bad idea for both child and dog. Whether you are 'neurotic' over your dog or not is of no consequence because if you asked 100 prudent dog owners about this I'd say 95 would echo what I'm saying.

I'd suggest sitting down calmly and explain to the BF all the bad things that could happen in such a case with very little benefit.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I assume you meant "should not be allowed"...the adult was along, but I think the adult is the one that needs to be holding on to the leash...I am not talking about just run of the mill pulling, I am talking about a split second decision...Tucker is pretty good on a leash...occasionally he can be a pain in the ass, but overall, I think he is somewhat sensitive to who is walking him...the bottom line is that he is an animal...animals have instincts that now matter how well they are trained and how many years they have been doing something can be overturned in an instant for something sudden...there was an article posted about that a while ago (a dog that used to run from the house to the car without a leash on and one day is saw something, took off and was INSTANTLY struck and killed by a car...that story has stuck with me for 7+ years...I will NEVER forget that)...the bottom line is that all it takes is a split second and you can NEVER have that second back for a "do over"...maybe I am being dramatic, but I don't want to find out the hard way that I should have been a bit more insistent.
 

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No way. He's YOUR dog. Lay down the law. If he doesn't respect you in this, then, well, maybe he might not respect your wishes in other matters should you get married down the road.


Lucy
 

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HK walks on lead with me very well. Seldom will the lead get taught, and she knows better than to pull. We have been through that phase. That said, my DW can't walk her. She knows she can get away with a lot, and the lead will be dropped if she pulls hard enough. My 32 year old son can walk her, but it takes repeated commands, and stops to reposition many times in the first couple hundred yards. Then she figures out that he is the same as Dad. Oh! but what about when 2.5 year old granddaughter, or petite 7 year old across the street wants to walk her. Special lead!!! I forget what it is called. Standard 6 foot lead but has an extra hand loop right off the clip, makes it the equivalent of maybe a 1 foot lead. The kid gets to hold the short handle, while I have the full length end. What is amazing to me is how good HK is when being walked that way. I don't know if it is that I have the end and she knows it, or that she knows not to pull little ones. Either way, it works. And no, I have zero plans of letting either of them walk her without me.
 

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Im 25 and used to struggle to hold alfie so noway would I let my 7yr old walk him. Rian has held the lead before, with Alfie on a halti and me right beside him..if i see a distraction in the distance I take hold of the lead. Tbh I dont think I would trust any child under 16 if that
 

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Oh man I would be just as pissed as you. First of all, as you said, it's YOUR dog. So, your dog=YOUR rules. If it was both your's and your BF's dog, then that's a whole other issue, even though I do agree an 8 year old should NOT be walking a Lab unsupervised. I am in my 40's and still have a hard time at times holding onto her leash if she decides to chase the squirrel up the tree, or the cat in the bushes. Labs are very strong, as you know. An 8 year old walking a Lab unsupervised leaves too much room for accidents. Your BF needs to be made aware of all the possible harm that could come to.....1. Your dog.......2. His daughter.....and 3. Someone else's dog or the dog walker. He needs to respect your wishes and ALSO your feelings about your dog! He may feel a human life is more important than a dog's, but you love your dog probably more than he will ever understand.
I would calmly lay down the law on this one. Explain to him why you do not want his daughter walking your dog unsupervised, or, even at all. Let him know that it is simply not a safe idea, for your dog, or for his daughter. END OF STORY. If he doesn't like it, or doesn't agree with you, TOO BAD. Something else to bring up to him: If your dog got loose and ran into, say, someone riding by on a bike and your dog knocked them over and they were injured, you would be responsible. As dog owners, we are supposed to be in control of our dogs AT ALL TIMES. So, let's just say the daughter is walking your dog, your dog sees something of huge interest and decides to bolt. The daughter can't hang on to the leash so she drops it ( like Dad said to :no: ). Meanwhile, your dog knocks into someone walking by and they fall down and hurt themselves pretty badly. Now you, as the owner, are responsible for that person's doctor bills, or whatever. I know it sounds farfetched, but it could happen.
Just let BF know that YOU are the one that is responsible for your dog.
I really feel for you. And I don't blame you one bit for being as angry as you are.
Just remember: Your dog, Your rules.
Good luck!
~Catherine
 

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A dog is an animal. No matter how well trained and how well behaved - you never know if something will spook him or if he will get it in his head that he's got to chase something. Just like we react instinctively to some things - so do animals.
I wouldn't allow a child to walk my dog unsupervised. Just like you'd blame your B/F is something happened to Tucker - he'd blame you and Tucker if something happened to his daughter.
 

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I don't know at what age...but I would not let an 8 year old walk Zoe.

Even if your SU said to let go of the lead, I think it may be human nature to hang on. that's what I did and I fell and got dragged down my driveway. Left side toes, shin, thigh, chest, elbow, face were not a pretty sight. Wish I had saved the pictures of me wrapped up in bandages.

So it's not *only* Tucker who could be hurt.
 

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My kids are 10 and 11. they walk our dogs when there is an adult present and have had no problems. We have just began doing this. I would never have let them when they were 8. After I know the kids can handle the dogs I will begin letting them go for SMALL walks on our street and where I can see them from our house. Gradually they woill be allowed out of sight etc. But we are taking this VERy SLOWLY
 

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No way - especially not along a road. In a very quiet area away from roads, with supervision, sure. But alone along roads? that is an accident waiting to happen. A 7 year old child is not physically capable of holding a fully grown Labrador should it decide to lunge and that puts both of them in danger. Not only that, but what happens in the event of an attack or fight? loose aggressive dogs can be a pain in the backside and I shudder at the thought of a 7 year old having to deal with that.

Honestly, I think your boyfriend is being very irresponsible.

As for WHEN a child should be allowed to walk a dog unsupervised, I think that really depends on the individual. When the child is physically able to control the dog and is generally dog savvy, then IMO it's ok.
 

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8 is a bit young.

It depends on the lab and the child before I would set an age. There are 16 year olds I wouldn't let walk a dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
For some reason I have been having trouble logging onto the board the past few days :( ...

Just to clarify...B/F was WITH his daughter, he didn't just give her the leash and send her on her way...I just don't think a 7 or 8 year old should be at the other end of a leash holding a lab for ALL the reasons stated above and then some!

Update...we had a LONG talk...B/F saw all of my points and apologized...in the mean time, I think I came up with a solution that makes everyone happy...I thought of the idea thanks to the person that posted about the double handle leash...here is what I came up with...

I will attach 2 leashes to Tucker's collar...the first is a standard 6 ft (I think that is the length) leash...the second is a flexi-leash (what I walk him with)...the daughter can hold the normal leash and pretty much "walk" Tucker but I am in the back with the Flexi-Leash as backup in case something happens...I am hoping this is a win/win solution...

Thanks for backing me up...I am glad to see I am not losing my mind of overreacting!! :)
 

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For some reason I have been having trouble logging onto the board the past few days ...
We all have - it has been down since Mon/Tuesday.

Oh, I didn't realise your B/F was WITH her. Still, a 7 year old holding a leash along a road is bad idea, but your solution sounds great.
 

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Engineer says there is a solution to every problem or need. Just have to think it through. The real problem is how long do you have to think before the solution appears. ;) ;)
 

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I agree that a young child should not walk a dog like yours, however my 4 yr old holds gordy's leash all the time on our walks. BUT I fully trust my dog and his obedience level. I let my 10 year old walk him around the block alone but again I trust my son and his maturity level.

The double leash idea is a great one.
 
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