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Unneutered dog bit child.

Species: Dog
Breed: Border Collie
Age: 8-11 years
Hello Dr. Marie,

Our 9 year old Border Collie has no history of aggression or biting. Three months ago we had some friends at our house for a BBQ. There was a female dog in heat there as well. Our Border Collie is not neutered. My friend's 2 year old walked past our dog on the deck and our dog lunged at him an bit his face causing the need for stitches behind his ear and below his eye. The boy is fine today an we are very remorseful about the accident. My question for you is if you would be able to support that when a male, un neutered dog is around a female dog in heat, that he may act uncharacteristically and become more aggressive and territorial. Your help could be the difference between life and death for our dog. And please know that we are taking every step to be sure that this NEVER happens again.
Sincerely,
Shelly Haddon


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I'm so sorry to hear that this has happened. I think ANY dog has the potential to bite and I never recommend letting a young child stay around dogs unsupervised.

Hormones can definitely cause unwanted behaviors like this. Having ChillyWilly neutered will likely greatly reduce the chance of something like this happening again. But, no one can say for sure.

Don't worry about him being too old to be neutered. As long as his bloodwork is good then he will do just fine with the anesthetic and the surgery.

In addition to having him neutered, it would be a good idea to buy a cage muzzle for him to wear if you have him at a family event like this again.

I hope he does ok!

Dr. Marie.

---This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.---


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.