Doggie Delemma

I don’t know what to do. For the past several days, we’ve had a dog wonder into our yard. The first night, his owner came to get him, and she told me that he had broken a window in the house to escape. The second time I talked to her, she said she had covered the window with a card board, and he broke that out. I could have told her that if a window wouldn’t hold him, a piece of cardboard sure wouldn’t, but I didn’t. After all, she IS trying.
Well, he’s been at our house every day for 5 days in a row. We call her, leave a message that her dog is back, and she comes and gets him. If this were all to the story, I’d have no problem. He’s a sweet, friendly, beautiful dog, and he does have a home. The problem is that I have cats, who are afraid of him. Some of them are ferals that we’ve had spayed/neutered, and nursed to health. I love these cats, and concider them as much mine, as my indoor only cats are. Some of them have even learned to trust Dh and me, and have become indoor/outdoor cats.
The problem is that when this dog is in our yard, my cats won’t stay in the yard, and they won’t come around for thier food until the dog is picked up and taken home. Sometimes that’s after dark. I don’t like to leave food down after dark, because I’m afraid it will attract rats, possoms, and other such animals. My indoor only cats won’t go out on the screened porch as long as the dog’s in the yard, and my indoor/outdoor cats won’t come inside, because he likes to sit on my porch mat.

I hate to complain to her, because she has tried to keep him contained. I refuse to call animal control, because we have such a horrible one here. I think this guy likes to kill things. I’ve tried yelling at the dog, but it upsets me. I know he’s just lonely, and he looks so sad when I do.

Anyway, I guess I just needed to vent. I don’t want anything to happen to the dog, but What if I lose my cats. What if they run off, and decide not to come back?

I am so sorry that you have to deal with this! the first thing I would do is confront the owner of the dog and say just what you said here. you don’t want to call animal control, but you have a right to your yard and your animal’s safety/security, so she/he needs to find a way to accomodate that. That would be my bottom line end of the road statement. If they cannot train their dog, they need to put up a fence. if they cannot/wll not do that, then I am sorry, but animal control does need to be involved. It is not fair to you to deal with an animal that is not yours that is threatening your pets health/safety.
And think about the dog, don’t you think it might me escaping because the people/owners are not taking sufficient care of it? jumping out of windows is not normal. jumping out of cardboard is not normal. maybe they aren’t caring/walking/exercizing properly. In that case, animal control, even if they aren’t the best, deserve a call.
Please keep us updated:muah:

I would think you could call the local SPCA or humane society and ask them to do a home visit. I had 2 different dogs growing up and currently have 2 and none of them have ever broken a window to get out of the house and the only reason they leave the yard is to chase small animals into the woods. I am willing to bet this dog is either not being fed, given water, or let out at regular intervals to go to the bathroom and is feeling really desperate. The only time I call animal control rather than my local no kill SPCA is if an animal is aggressive or injured.
Good luck - and don’t worry I think the ferrel kitties will stick around as long as their getting food : )

I know you two are right. Last time she picked him up, I started to tell her she has a sweet dog, but she needs to try to keep him contained, and explain to her about cats, and how their lives are disrupted. Well, I chickened out, but next time, I guess I’m just going to have to bite the bullet and tell her the situation. I just hate doing that.

That’s exactly what I was thinking. They must not walk him for him to have that kind of energy. We walk our dog twice a day and just for that little amount of time, it knocks her out for hours!! Granted we don’t like going all of the time, but it’s our responsibility to take care of her and that owner is obviously not doing that. People suck.

My DH gets up 20 minutes early so he can take her, and don’t think he wouldn’t like to sleep that extra 20 min. He gets up at 4:45 AM!!! Poor guy, but thats what it takes.

Does she have a treadmill?? She can put him on a treadmill, slowy introduce it to him AND she has to be in the room the whole time he’s on it in case he gets hurt or falls off. Have her read Cesar Milan’s book, it explains how to introduce them to treadmills. I mean, goodness, we take her when it’s 20 degrees outside! :pout: Only if it’s in the single digits do we skip her walks and boy, if DH misses taking her in the morning, ugh, she’s a PITA all day!!

But I love her to death. cloud9

I don’t know the dog’s owners, or where they live. The only reason we can call, is because their phone # is on his tags.

I think ya’ll are right about the lack of walks. He’s very energetic, and actually, when Dh looked on his tag, he was all playful, but when Dh told him to sit down(so he could check the tags) he obeyed him. He’s a good weight, and he never eats my catfood, so I know he’s being fed. He’s friendly, so I know they’re not mean to him. He just has all that playful energy. So it must be a lack of exercise issue.

Suggest she start watching The Dog Whisperer on Animal Planet. Cesar Milon is absolutely AWESOME! He works with dogs with problems and it’s not unusual for the root of the problem to be that the owner doesn’t realize how MUCH exercise the animal needs. He recommends 45 minutes of exercise per day for an energetic animal.

I think the humane society home visit is an excellent idea. you do deserve to protect your property and pets. while it sounds like a nice dog, they are not being good owners.

and if it takes a call to animal control to wake up the owners, so be it…

(we walk our dogs in the rain, cold, snow, whatever… they are getting old so they don’t want too much exercise, but you can’t keep a dog in the house 24/7! its just not fair to them.)

confrontation is really hard. I tend to avoid it as much as possible, but sometimes you just have to. hang in there and be strong!

Dogs who habitually run away are usually lonely. It sounds like he needs a pal or buddy to help him stay home. Maybe even his own cat :slight_smile: I would talk to her and see if she has any ideas of what could be done to make him happier. Does he have enough time outside in a fenced yard? Would she be willing to get another dog to give him a buddy? Is there a teen in the neighborhood who would be willing to “dog sit” him when she isn’t home? Poor pup. And I totally understand the whole ferral cats as our own situation. BTDT. Although we only were able to catch one to neuter. The others were too smart to get caught and they never truly became friendly. We called them “The Moochers” as they came every night around 5pm for dinner.

Well, so far, I haven’t seen him today. Maybe she found a way to keep him home. (crossing fingers)

I forgot to mention, that he does have a dog friend. the first day, both of them were in our yard, but the other one must not be as much of a roamer, because she hasn’t been back.

I agree about the lack of excercise! my old neighbors used to have dogs - note that being plural - in a fairly small yard. Their major form of excercise was being let out many times a day and with two or three energetic dogs and the occassional grandchild, most of them did get plenty of excercise. However, at one point one of the kids (who had just gotten a divorce) moved back in with a HUGE sled-dog type wolf-mix. That’s right WOLF mix. He was not well trained, though he was well loved, and friendly except he had no bite inhibition. This dog ran away daily. He jumped the fence, ALL THE TIME. My family had rabbits at the time, and it was very scary to be playing in the yard with my bunny (at age eight, the dog was three or four times my size) and see the wolf-dog jumping over his fence towards me, no matter how much I loved him when the bunny was safely in her hutch. They didn’t walk him because he was too big and wasn’t leash trained (What POSSESSED them to do that?) They put in a 6’ fence, it didn’t hold him. Eventually he started heading further and further away and the choice was made to give him up to a family on a farm. He had plenty of attention with my neighbors, just not enough space/excercise.

Oh my goodness. I can imagine you in your yard happily playing, then suddenly turn and see this big galloot tromping toward you. I’m scared of big dogs, and I’d have probably had a heart attack right there. I am glad this story has a happy ending though. He was probably thrilled to have a farm to live at, and plenty of space to roam.

Well, its another day, and no dog. I just hope it’s because she found a way to keep him home. I’d hate to think that someone called the animal control on him. I know it’s not my problem, but I just love animals, and I’d hate to think of him in doggie jail.

Better doggie jail than hit by car should he decide to roam the streets.

That’s true. Besides, he’s got her phone# on the back of his tag, so they’ll be able to contact her. And even if she decides she doesn’t want him anymore, he’s a great dog, and should be easy for find a home.