I was walking to our front door with Odin in his car seat as a very large dog came toward us barking aggressively. I just stood still, raising Odin up and keeping eye contact with him, hoping he didn’t get scared. I had no clue how the dog would react to a screaming baby.
My Scariest Parenting Moment Yet
The owner came out a little casually and was calling to the dog to get inside but when she rounded a large van and saw us, even she looked scared. She starting hollering at the dog a little louder. I think it was her lack of physical reaction in pulling the dog back from us as he circled, barking and nipping at my arms, when I realized this could really end poorly. She obviously seemed concerned but unwilling to jump in and change the situation.
After more of her yelling, the dog finally ran towards her only to circle the van and come right back to us. She asked if she could help me and all I could say was, “Please get your dog inside right now.” I’m not sure if it was me just standing there that he realized we weren’t a threat or what, but after another round of aggressive behavior he finally went inside. When I closed our front door, I was shaking and scared out of my mind, even though I knew it was over and we were ok. This was the first time I really worried something awful may happen to my son.
I absolutely love animals. I grew up on a farm with loads of them around, and I already see the joy that our cat brings to Odin as well as pets that our friends have. But what I realized that day was there is going to be a big teaching moment with him as he gets older. Not only does he need to know how to behave around animals, and certainly animals he is not familiar with, but also that not all pet owners are responsible pet owners. I’ve experienced this all too often before, but having my child involved is a completely different story, and makes it that much more serious.
Have any of you come across an aggressive pet that their owner wasn’t observing or controlling? If so, how did you handle it?
Caitlin — Mom of Odin