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Old 01-11-2016, 12:04 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Boxers and kids?

My uncle had a Boder growing up and he was great with kids, other than the occasional hump, probably a dominance thing. My little girl, Wren, is part Boxer, part Pitt, but as some of you know, I'm much more familiar with Pitt side.
We had another extended family thing today, her second time around small children with us. It's become clear she really seems to like them, but possibly doesn't know how to interact? She followed the kids around much of the time, but didn't really engage. When they happened to pet her because she was there, or interacted at all, she seemed pleased, but didn't respond much.
I've been watching her like a hawk with the kids just to be safe, but she seems to be great. She was 'booped' with a number of items today, and she was neither offended nor did she try and take the stuffed animals that she was 'booped' with, which is not common.
The most surprising thing, was when new family members came in. An Uncle and a cousin at different time picked up a child and spun them or tickled, and she barked and growled. At the adult, not the child. It was clear she was concerned that the child was being hurt, and she ran away and then back, like she was scared but thought she might need to help the child.
I'm not entirely sure how to proceed. The Pitts I've known, you could just show them the happy kid and join in, but she seems to love these kids even though she has no idea what they are. I'm used to Pitts who either GET kids and love them, or don't get them and think their fine, but don't really care that much.
I guess I just need some knowledge on how Boxers normally are with just kids? I'm assuming they love them, right?
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Old 01-11-2016, 01:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
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By and large, a sound stable "dog" of either breed is fine with kids! In my case if kids came over I had "zero" concerns about Struddell Boxer/Gunther American Band Dawg (aka BullMastiff/APBT/Lab) or Stewie/Boxer/APBT of the three the only danger to kids was my Boxer! And ... that was strictly, because anyone under 3 feet was subject to being treated like a Weeble :



but ... kids would fall down!

So I did have to urge her to dial it down! Then I got my GSD and him and kids, yeah "NO" he did not much care for "Adults" much less kids! And in particular, toddlers. (A no kid household so no biggie here) But with him, I became much more "anal" about rules and structure and what I learned with him I do with all dogs I work with in Rescue. Works out fine.

So ... thus far you've not seen what I do?? I try and help people learn things they may not have know?? And it looks like this:
https://www.boxerforums.com/training/...eadership.html

And I used to do the Cesar Milan, get the dogs approval, of guest first and then allow guest in. Yeah ... that pretty much created chaos with Gunther and Struddell, they luv'd everybody, it got kinda nutty! (And at the time, I knew of no method to dial them down??)

But with Rocky ... yeah no! Someone could get hurt! So with him I looked for answers and this was a mayjor part of them:

https://www.boxerforums.com/training/...e-command.html

Rocky goes to "Place" and I keep company, out of his face! You don't need to go quite as far as I did but you should teach your dog "The Place Command,"
"every" dog should be taught this.

And again your dog does not sound like kids will be an issue and proper structure and "leadership" will keep her that way.

To see what kids and dogs should look like have a look here:

And again just for a better understanding of dogs and kids, not saying "your" dog is like these! I'm just "extremely" cautious around the dogs and kids thing.

So this is not about your dog per se, I share what I know and these days I take "nothing" with "dogs" for granite.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7_0ZqiJ1zE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FOay2vWSBo
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Last edited by chip18; 01-11-2016 at 01:42 AM.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Most boxers love kids, ours does too but we tend to try and keep him calm. I am not big on swinging kids around in play in front of the dog because they and most dogs regardless of breed get overly excited and bark and growl Not because they are trying to protect the kid but because they are over stimulated and really don't know what is expected of them. And thats when accidents can occur.
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Old 01-11-2016, 08:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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My boys are all grown now and I was a bit worried about being around children, I had a few parties here and kept the dogs behind a gate they loved the kid attention but still was worried, then over the summer I had house guest and 2 big family dinners, was not locking my dogs up for a week, they did excellent, I was very pleased, since then I have had my 5yr old neice sleep over and my 10 yr old neice her almost every weekend for the day, she use to be terrified of my dogs but no more she handfeeds them treats... I will never trust it completely because my boys are big and there are 2 of them so we have rules, No running jumping or screaming.. I am a proud boxer mommie
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Old 01-11-2016, 11:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks guys this is all excellent information!
And don't worry, even though I can't imagine her being human-aggressive (she apparently jumped out of a second story window rather than engage the rescuer that cornered her as a stray), but I still watch her like a hawk around any new person, especially kids.
You know I know it sounds like over stimulation, but a number of things make me think she thought the kids were being hurt, and was trying to make the adult stop. I had no idea they were going to do that or I would've taken her in another room.
I'm working with her on being gentle too at work. I'm using 'gentle' for if she's getting too crazy, but 'puppy' for if she has to treat someone very gently in general, like for a puppy, very timid dog, or smaller dog. I haven't had to use the command with kids, she just kind of tries to be near them, and if very excited, she'll almost 'sneak' a kiss.
Idk I'm pleased she obviously likes them, but confused on why she's so timid trying to get their attention.
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Old 01-12-2016, 09:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Duke is VERY calm around little ones 2-5 years old or so. The smaller they are, the more gentle and calm he is with them. Much like the sounds of your girl, he will follow the little ones around and occasionally lick their faces, but nothing more really. It's like he knows that he has to be very gentle with them.
Now once they get a bit bigger, all bets are off! lol Well, he's not rough with them but he's definitely not as careful!
As for her reaction to the child being spun around - maybe the motion was unexpected and startled her? Could be that it was just freaking her out!
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Last edited by sasasola; 01-12-2016 at 09:34 AM.
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