I had a Great Dane, whose name I will not post for fear of identity -- let's call him Beloved. Beloved was always nervous of & around my then husband. His tail was often tucked, head lowered. I had presummed this was because the then husband was often yelling, and Beloved being the gentle soul he was, sensitive too such things. Beloved was always near me when the-then-husband was home, but in his uncomfortable pose. But when the-then-husband went to work, Beloved would often sleep upstairs on our bed, returning to the main room of the house in the evening to spend time with me. (The-then-husband worked second shift, so he didn't return home until very late.) It seemed as if the dog would prefer to not to be around that man, but felt obligated to do so. At the time, I took this to mean the dog, having been mine prior to the marriage, was still feeling very 'head of household' and deemed the-then-husband to be a visitor which he must keep an eye on.
One night my Beloved was home with the husband & our child. I know little of what happened that evening, only that I recieved a phone call that the dog had bitten our son, and that I was to come home. Upon coming home, no humans were there, but both of my dogs were gated off in the dinning room. I guessed that the smaller dog had done it, just based on the fact that I saw no blood or mess, & that the big dog, beloved, was so non-threatening. But I was wrong. Both dogs seemed nervous, apologetic, but I had to wait for more answers.
The story I was eventually told is that 'for no reason' Beloved jumbed up & bit our son. He had been watching the TV, he said, and there was nothing upseting the dog, he 'just bit him for ne reason.'
Even then I suspected differently. I knew how he'd yell at the animals. How he'd scream at Beloved for standing up, blocking portions of the TV screen. But I wasn't there. So what could I say?
I had to choose between my flesh & blood son, and my 'furry son.' And so I put Beloved down.
Ever since the incident, I knew that Beloved had been threatened by the-then-husband, and our son was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Likely Beloved was cornered, and he thought he could get away, past the toddler, but something happened, likely the child moved a bit, and Beloved bit out of fear & panic to get away.
Yet another life destroyed by that man.
For those that own a Dane, I know I need not say anything. For those that have pets at all, I imagine the same is true. But for those who have never been blessed by knowing a Dane, let me tell you, they are the sweetest, goofy babies in all of dogdome. You really have to be a mean spirit to harass one into attacking. *sigh*
It should not surprise me, with all I now know of this man. But it does.
And I sure could use my sweet Beloved with me now.
Lili G, you & your children take care of that pup. I'll send Beloved's spirit to watch over her too.