Joan: A little over two years ago, my daughter, a
Seattle resident, adopted a dog from a group that picks
up strays and matches them with human companions. At the
time she took in ďRadar,Ē he was short of 10 weeks
old, and she was single.
Radar, a lab/pit/other-stuff mixed breed, are thick as
thieves. However, she soon discovered that Radar has a
mean streak. She was able to track Radarís sisterís
family and found out that the two were all that remained
of a litter that was found in a bag with a homeless
person. The rest of the litter was dead in the bag, and
the woman was trying to sell the last two pups.
they had developed puppy herpes, which I guess affects
the brain, and were malnourished.
beautiful and spunky, but a little dimwitted, and he has
an aggressive streak with other animals and everyone who
isnít my daughter. Even then, itís iffy. Radarís
sister was eventually euthanized for attacking her
familyís other dog.
forward two years. My daughter has married and would
like to start a family. However, Radar should never be
around children ó and most other people. We have
talked with adoption and rehoming agencies, Best Friends
Animal Society, veterinarians, trainers and more.
daughter, put out his history on Facebook. She has Radar
in therapy, working with behavior trainers, and has him
on doggy Prozac and other calming agents. She does not
want to put him down. We are savers and lovers. We just
canít euthanize him. It will kill Jean to do that.
have any suggestions? We are trying desperately to find
a home for Radar so that Jean and her husband can begin
their family journey. We are all at a loss as to how to
for any help you can provide.
Rebecca H., Los Altos, Calif.
Rebecca: This is a very difficult situation, and I have
nothing but praise and respect for your daughter.
Recognizing that a pet would not be good around children
is something a lot of people fail to see or accept, and
that is a dangerous road to take.
daughter and her husband need to make a decision on
whether they want to keep Radar and continue to work
with him on his aggressive behavior, or to find him a
be trained and the aggressiveness dealt with, although
it will always be something theyíll need to watch out
for. However it is a behavior, not a breed-specific
trait and I found no link between puppy herpes and
aggression. Retraining does involve a lot of time, work
and money, but itís not impossible. Iíd recommend
she continue working with a professional dog trainer and
decide they arenít able to take that route, that
doesnít make them bad people. They will need to find
Radar a new home. Many pet adoption groups will take the
dog back if it doesnít work out, so that should be the
some reason, your daughter and son-in-law donít trust
that the group will be forthcoming to potential adopters
about Radarís history, then they should contact other
agencies. While Radar might not be a good fit in a home
with young children, he might be perfect for another