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Why does my dog act like this around the baby?

shibamom
August 2nd, 2010, 10:45 AM
So Simba has picked up a few new quirky habits, I'm just curious if those more experienced in dog behaviour can tell me why.

1- When the baby cries (a LOT, he had colic), Simba will pick up a stuffed toy and shake it like crazy, tossing it onto the baby. After that, he will run around in circles.

2- When we put the baby to sleep for the night (it's dark, quiet, and we're careful to try and not make a sound!), Simba will grab a large chew bone and toss it onto the (hardwood) floor right below the baby's bassinet, waking him up! He *never* does this at any other time except at the 9pm bedtime routine.

It's cute & funny, I'm just curious.

Sew-sew-steve
August 2nd, 2010, 10:51 AM
Could it be that he gets jealouse and does it for attention?

Love4himies
August 2nd, 2010, 11:33 AM
Perhaps he wants to play with the baby???

hazelrunpack
August 2nd, 2010, 04:42 PM
That's what it sounds like to me, too, L4H. :D In fact, it sounds like Simba's trying to cheer baby up with a quick game of toss the stuffy in that first example...

How's Baby doing, shibamom? Has he outgrown the colic now? :fingerscr :goodvibes:

luckypenny
August 2nd, 2010, 04:44 PM
Hmmm...we have to see lots of pics and videos of the behavior in order to tell you why :D.

Dog Dancer
August 2nd, 2010, 04:59 PM
Sounds to me like Simba is trying to be included in the babies routine. I would try to get hubby to spend some one on one time with Simba just before you put the baby to bed and kind of tire him out. Then make sure the bone is not available to him to pick up and throw. The crying issue hopefully has settled down, but Simba was probably just very concerned with the fuss and trying to help. I agree though that some pics would help us diagnose!:laughing:

Love4himies
August 2nd, 2010, 05:01 PM
Hmmm...we have to see lots of pics and videos of the behavior in order to tell you why :D.

Absolutely :thumbs up :laughing:

shibamom
August 4th, 2010, 06:00 PM
Thank you everyone :)

I think including Simba in a night routine is a good idea, perhaps he is feeling left out (or at least still annoyed that his routine has been disrupted).

Since we need quiet to put the baby to bed, I have started to stay with the baby as he falls asleep and my husband takes him into the bedroom and plays ducky/dog bone with him (chase game he loves).

I would love to share some more pictures, but it's not easy to get them both together in one shot :eek: This is the best I can do for now :rolleyes:

luckypenny
August 4th, 2010, 06:05 PM
I would love to share some more pictures, but it's not easy to get them both together in one shot

That's ok shibamom :grouphug:, we'll accept (lots) more photos of them individually :D.

shibamom
August 5th, 2010, 08:32 PM
That's ok shibamom :grouphug:, we'll accept (lots) more photos of them individually :D.

Finally! :) Although it isn't the night play picture.

Here's baby and Simba in our (communal~ bed,crib,crate!) bedroom.

He sits by the baby and waits while he naps :lovestruck:

Frenchy
August 5th, 2010, 08:37 PM
He sits by the baby and waits while he naps :lovestruck:

sooo cute ! and I noticed in the other picture , even if he's outside , his nose is inside ... it's look like he wants to be there to protect the baby :cloud9:

shibamom
August 5th, 2010, 09:02 PM
sooo cute ! and I noticed in the other picture , even if he's outside , his nose is inside ... it's look like he wants to be there to protect the baby :cloud9:

Thanks! :cloud9:

He is like a satellite to the baby, always around! It breaks his heart whenever I go to the bathroom or shower and I need to separate them into different rooms :(

Dog Dancer
August 7th, 2010, 10:43 PM
Now how sweet is that that Simba is so attached to the baby. :cloud9: He's obviously a pretty well adjusted dog. But you are so right to separate them when you can't be around to supervise. You just never know what can happen even with the most well adjusted pets. :thumbs up

Goldfields
August 7th, 2010, 11:31 PM
I know I won't be popular if I don't say how cute is that behaviour, but that behaviour is only seen here when my cattle dog is stressing out, wanting to get at my sheep but separated by a fence. He will pick up a Kong, chew the heck out of it and shake his head, spin in circles etc.. So, it may be worry over the crying that is making your dog do that. Harmless? I really hope so.
You need to see that the only toys he can pick up and shake are totally harmless ones too. My sister's GSD was shaking a tug rop which hit her sheltie pup in the side of the head and literally killed it. They had to revive it on the way to the vet. The result is that the sheltie had a fractured skull and is partly blind. Worries me that the baby is at the same level as the dog and of course I totally agree with Dog Dancer that it should never be left alone with the baby. With something that precious one should never have a "it won't happen to us" attitude, I am sure that woman whose poor baby got killed by the huskies thought she could trust them.

shibamom
August 8th, 2010, 09:29 AM
^ I see what you are saying Goldfields, I appreciate your concern. The only way to separate them is to lock one of them in a bedroom because we live in a one bedroom condo, or separate their level by forcing one of them to stay up high like on a couch or table or something. We're always there watching :)

Love4himies
August 8th, 2010, 09:37 AM
Goldfields, could it be your dogs are showing excitement in anticipation for getting out and doing their job? Perhaps not an aggressive excitement.

I see your pup gathering the toys like he does as my cats do when they are wanting to play and attention from me. They get their stuffies, act like it is their "prey" and bring it to me and lay it at my feet. I know they are cats, but it could be a similar mental state :shrug:.

Goldfields
August 8th, 2010, 12:14 PM
Oh, it's an aggressive excitement alright with my boy, Love4himies. He can't get out to heel the sheep so he takes it out on the Kong. It just bothered me that this sort of thing was new where Simba is concerned and linked to the baby being really distressed with the colic. I think dogs know babies are babies, but if you follow me, a dog can also be upset by what it sees as unusual behaviour . For instance a woman I knew let one of her cattle dogs have its litter in a building that was far too cold, and she wasn't there supervising. I think because the pups got chilled and didn't react as normal pups should, the mother attacked them, literally tore the whole litter to pieces. Where our reaction is to comfort a crying baby and smother it with TLC, a dog is a dog, that crying could be stressful for it.
Re the tug rope incident, I just thought I would mention it because shibamom might be like me, I'd not even dream that such a nasty accident could happen due to the toy shaking/head swinging behaviour .

Love4himies
August 8th, 2010, 12:21 PM
Oh, it's an aggressive excitement alright with my boy, Love4himies. He can't get out to heel the sheep so he takes it out on the Kong.


Excuse my ignorance, but is heeling the sheep an aggression act, I thought it was like a job or play to heelers :shrug:.

Goldfields
August 8th, 2010, 08:29 PM
A lot of cattle dogs bite too hard if they aren't trained properly on sheep, yet they need to bite hard if they handle rough cattle. They are usually keen to work but no, I wouldn't call it play really. Shibamom should know watching her dog whether he's relaxed and playing, or a bit hyper and intense. If you watched my dog, and imagine it was your arm, or the sheep's leg he was shaking, you'd know it would be a real mess when he finally let go.

ownedbycats
August 13th, 2010, 09:05 AM
I don't have much experience with dogs and babies, but I read these two posts on a lbog I like and thought of your thread. The lady who writes this blog is really good at explaining why her dogs act in certain ways. I hope these posts help:
http://blacksheepcardigans.com/ruff/dog-behavior/hes-great-with-kids/

http://blacksheepcardigans.com/ruff/dog-behavior/dogs-and-babies/

Goldfields
August 13th, 2010, 12:37 PM
Excellent links, ownedbycats, I especially like the one about babies. I think the same but she says it better. LOL.

BenMax
August 13th, 2010, 01:05 PM
I know I won't be popular if I don't say how cute is that behaviour, but that behaviour is only seen here when my cattle dog is stressing out, wanting to get at my sheep but separated by a fence. He will pick up a Kong, chew the heck out of it and shake his head, spin in circles etc.. So, it may be worry over the crying that is making your dog do that. Harmless? I really hope so.
You need to see that the only toys he can pick up and shake are totally harmless ones too. My sister's GSD was shaking a tug rop which hit her sheltie pup in the side of the head and literally killed it. They had to revive it on the way to the vet. The result is that the sheltie had a fractured skull and is partly blind. Worries me that the baby is at the same level as the dog and of course I totally agree with Dog Dancer that it should never be left alone with the baby. With something that precious one should never have a "it won't happen to us" attitude, I am sure that woman whose poor baby got killed by the huskies thought she could trust them.

I am very glad that you pointed this out Goldfields as the shaking the toy worries me alittle. Also, the baby should not be at the same level on the ground as the dog.

It is possible that this is harmless, but better safe than sorry. Dogs react to certain sounds and as your dog is using a toy he is redirecting (on his own which is fascinating) his attention.

I am sure that you know your dog well and that everything is fine, but I would be really watching the behaviour as all this is new to your dog.

shibamom
August 13th, 2010, 06:39 PM
Thank you for the advice everyone (good links ^_ btw)

I wrote this over a week ago and since then, Simba's behaviour has changed. He no longer does the bone toss (he has always shook his toys though, ever since he was a young pup - Shiba Inu has strong prey drive).

The baby is now in a crib in his own bedroom and Simba is back in his crate. It must have been a phase. Our baby had severe colic until last week, and since the colic and crying went away, Simba has changed. He just ignores the baby and shows no interest at bedtime.

Goldfields
August 13th, 2010, 09:03 PM
Shiba Inus were bred to hunt, weren't they, so they should have that strong prey drive. You're a good mum and are not being a bad dog mum by separating Simba from your baby, in a way it's protecting both of them. By the way, I'm pleased to hear your bub is not getting colic now. :)