The Basic Facts and a Possible Solution

Hazel decided to bully poor timid little Roxanne.  Petco banned us from Obedience Class when I told them about the first scuffle.  I hired a Dog Whisperer who said Hazel was young and we could change her behavior.  All was going so well until there was another attack, sending Rox to the clinic once again with injuries.  Dog Whisperer says Rox has to go.  The vet says Hazel should go.  I don’t want either one to go.  I have to keep the dogs separated at all times – I juggle dogs 24/7.  It’s all I get done.

Doesn’t she look like an angel?

I love her.

Rox is timid and now terrified – of life in general.  She doesn’t deserve this!  I love her, too.  

I can’t find anyone to take Rox and I agreed to return Hazel to the friend of a friend I got her from if she didn’t work out in our home.  But I don’t want to take her back.

Concord Care Center has been looking for a small quiet dog.  Rox is afraid to let anybody pet her but with Marline’s help, Rox is spending time at the care center.  She can’t stay there overnight so I take her a little earlier every day and pick her up at 5 pm.  She comes home to spend the night and she goes back to ” work” the next day.  She spent 4 hours there today without me which is her longest stay so far.

Concord Care Center, Garner, Iowa

Marline with Rox.

I have cried for hours and days about this.  I will no longer board dogs – I couldn’t risk it.  Think of all those dogs I’ve had here at the same time – with no problems!  This was totally unexpected.

Pretty Kitty had a urinary infection last week – the vet didn’t believe me and kept her overnight.  She is 16 years old – more medicine.

In the heat today I went to Fleet Farm 35 minutes away to get clay pots for my geraniums.  When I opened the rear van door in the garage, they rolled out and shattered!

For someone who loves animals, I seem to have many problems.

Twins?  Pam and Ethel.

Rox met Oliver, a Pomeranian, at the care center as well as Nala, a golden retriever and Meatball, a bulldog puppy.  Here’s Oliver with Rox.

I know you’ ve all been worried and I’m sorry but I am so upset about this, I can’t think of anything else.

84 thoughts on “The Basic Facts and a Possible Solution

  1. Angie Rowland

    Just know we have you in our prayers that all will work out. It is just a lot to deal with but remember that you have friends.

  2. Nancy Garabrandt

    I have dogs that do not get along and have had vet trips because of it. A few years ago I knew they had to be kept separate. I have never gotten rid of one of my babies, so the only solution is keeping them apart. They are rotated, still with me, and very loved. It is a very viable solution, just takes a little more time in the day. I am sorry that you are going through this. When an alpha dog comes into the picture it can be a problem, if the other dog is timid or old. It is the nature of dogs to take over the pack if they sense the current leader of the pack is old or sick, after all they do not think like humans.

  3. Marilyn

    Thank you for the update. We miss you but know your focus is where it needs to be. Prayers for you and your family.

  4. Cathy Davis

    Tell us a bit about Rox. What breed of dog is she, age, temperament.
    Thank you 🐶

  5. Linette Anne Stewart

    Mary you have such a loving heart and there is no doubt however this turns out you will have made the right choice. My daughter has 2 terrier type dogs both 15 yrs old. The female has attacked the male who is now blind for years. It breaks my heart that this happens but my daughter can’t bear to rehome the female because she loves them so much. She tries to separate them but it doesn’t always work. You are doing what is best.

  6. Janet wolf

    Mary. Just follow your heart and do what you think is best. I’ll bet rox loves “working” and maybe hazel will outgrow this. I have a terrier that is a bully too and there are times we just have her kennel up when she gets too obnoxious. My terrier has made great progress with trying to behave. She knows commands, comes when called(mostly to see if I will give her a treat) and is a joy to be with most of the time. Good luck. Hazel is a very lucky dog that she charmed someone like you into taking her in and loving her.

  7. Cheryl

    Mary, you will be in my thoughts, we love our dogs but sometimes we need to think of a solution that benefits all of them. You love having the dogs come to your house and all but one fits in nicely. Sounds like Hazel would be better off in a home where she is the only dog. If she has injured Rox, she may become brave and go after the other dogs or animals that you have at your farm. I agree with Leslie and the Vet, Hazel needs to find a new home. Whatever decision you make, it will be difficult one. I will pray for a solution you can live with.

  8. Judy

    Oh, Mary,
    It is SO good to hear from you today! Y’ll have been in my prayers!
    What a flurry of furry frenzies! I cannot imagine how hard this has been! In all the sadness of the hail storm this added so much more. My heart hurts with yours.
    My two English Cream Golden Retriever pups turn two this week when I turn 71. “What are you thinking?” is what many inferred when I proudly announced puppies would be arriving. I grinned and loved the puppy-ness! Although now I do admit we had some very trying days/weeks. But we did not deal with anything as serious as your situation – and my heart truly hurts with yours!
    And like you said – after alllllll these years with dogs/boarding/playtimes, etc – “What a kettle of ….!” Hang on, my animal loving friend! Hang on!
    Know that many prayers and hugs are being sent your way!
    Judy in Texas

  9. Donna Sproston

    Hazel sounds like a dog that needs to be the one and only. I have never had a dog but friends had a similar siutation. They brought a pair of Airedale puppies into their home of two older dogs. After several months, the female began to be very aggressive with all the others, even her litter mate. The solution for them was to find a family that had no other dogs. The new family never had a problem. Could this be an issue with some terrier breeds? My heart goes out to you as you work on a solution.

  10. Linda Hanley

    Mary – I can understand what you are going through. Right now we have sort of a similar situation. We have a dog that we bought from a breeder because he (our dog) didn’t get along with his father. He is a wonderful, funny, active dog. He just didn’t like his father. He’s been good with other dogs we have socialized him with. I know you will make the right decision. Linda

  11. Nancy Wines

    So sorry you have ended up in such a hard situation. You have such a kind and loving heart. I feel sure a solution will come to you. No matter what you decide to do your friends will support you. Hugs!

  12. Diane Deibler

    It will all work out in the end,Mary. Our little dog bullied our house cat while I was around but Bob said when I wasn’t around he found them laying on the couch together. I think he was very jealous when I gave the cat attention. The poor kitty finally resigned herself to not being in the same room with the dog when I was home. Some pets have a very strong personality just like some humans. I hope you come to a resolution soon.

  13. Claire

    Awww so sorry, get rid of Hazel, sounds cruel, but seems all your problems are because of Hazel..

  14. Susan Sundermeyer

    Mary, I am so sorry that you are going through this. I know how you love your animals. I wished I lived many states closer to you. I would have helped you out with Rox. I will pray for peace in your household and for peace in your heart.

  15. Beverly

    I am no expert but is it likely that Hazel will bully another one of your pets if Rox leaves? I would go with the vets suggestion even though you don’t want to part with Hazel. How sad that you feel you need to give up dog sitting because of the little angel. Again I am no expert.

  16. Diane

    I wish I could jump through this IPad and give you a hug!! This is like a catch 22. I feel bad that you have to give up your boarding which you love. But, you also love Rox and Hazel. I hope there is a good solution for all. All of you are in my thoughts and prayers. Good luck. Diane in Central Ohio.

  17. Sue Smith

    Beverly said it very well. I believe like others, that Hazel is very jealous of your attention to any other dogs/cats/ chickens/ maybe even humans eventually. She probably needs to be an only dog. Dogs, like people, sometimes have personality faults that cannot be corrected.
    I wish you success with this problem, but mostly I wish you peace of mind. You deserve it!

  18. Debbie grisanti

    I can feel the anguish you are going through, but it sounds like Hazel needs to be an only child. I think you have to decide what’s best for Hazel and your other fur babies that have been apart of your loving family for many years. I would have trouble giving them up.

  19. Brenda

    I agree that Hazel wants to be an ‘only child’ and may hurt a barn animal or one of the cats. What breed of dog is Rox? I assume she likes cats & gets along with them since you have cats? I lost my beloved OES last September. I might be interested in Rox if she can get along with my cats. I live on a farm.

  20. Judy Rounds

    My heart aches for you. I hope SO much that everything will work out in the best possible way.

  21. Carolyn Boutilier

    Dear Mary, You have been in my thoughts and prayers. I know you will come to a good solution for all your animals. Hugs. Carolyn from Virginia

  22. Sherrill Pecere

    A couple of years ago, I adopted a dachshund from the pound and took him home. He was so cute and I loved him. But I also had a cat who, at the time, was 14, and he did NOT love the dog. He stayed on the fringes of the house (where the baby gate kept the dog from accessing) but the dog would NOT leave the cat alone. After a couple of months, I wound up surrendering the dog. I felt the cat had been with me for 14 years and I wasn’t going to let a new dog in the house to ruin his last few years. It was hard but what needed to be done. 🙁

  23. Sue Davis

    Our dear Mary,
    We had to make a hard hard decision recently, as you know. Both of us cried and cried. That sadness remains when we look to our little barn and the fencing that has been taken down. The stress is gone and life is getting easier. Our Lord will help you make a very hard decision. You are in many hearts and prayers. ❤️ Sue, Argyle, Tx. You have my phone #.

  24. Patty McDonald

    So sorry to hear about Hazel. We had 3 yellow labs and a coon hound when our son begged us to take his 10 year old German Sheppard. The male Sheppard got aggressive with our rambunctious 2 year old lab. Twice we ended up at the vets with deep bites on the lab. The vets office told us to get rid of the Sheppard. We kept a close eye on the dogs and tried to separate the two as much as possible. It is a different situation then yours I know being that our lab was young and entergetic and would jump on the Sheppard. Mazie learned to avoid upsetting Zeus and we haven’t had a serious problem since before Christmas. It is heart breaking because you love all of them. What ever choice you make it will be the right one. Patty Mc

  25. Beth T.

    I am so very sorry you are dealing with this. I know how you’ve come to love your little Hazel. And yet, I know you must be heartbroken to see Rox go through this. I hesitate to add any unsolicited advice. Please know I am not suggesting I know better than you do. It does seem as if perhaps Hazel is a girl who needs to be an only or an oldest child. I know she has a good heart, but her need to be “top dog” pushes her to act in a way that will make her act out and be harmful to others–putting both them in a dangerous situation and making her look bad. I’ll be keeping all of you–human and furry family members alike–in my prayers. I know Heavenly Father cares about all of you. As do we all.

  26. Patricia Hemza

    You probably do not remember me. Anyway. I am so very sorry about your terrible situation. I have lived through such a situation. It ended very badly.
    I would like to know how old Rosie is and what is her breed and size.
    It sounds as if you are receiving good advice. I will not offer any advice. I will say that you have an impossible situation. You and thevdoggiesvare in my prayers.

  27. Brenda archambault

    Brenda #1,
    It would be wonderful if you could take Rox, even though she resides in Mary’s heart.
    Fortunately my animals and pets got along, at least to my knowledge. How about a visit at Mary’s to see if Rox would warm up to you. It sounds like she’s gotten along with Mary’s other “children., over the years. Dammed if you do and dammed if you don’t. Good luck.
    Brenda A

  28. Kathy Hanson

    I am so sorry for the difficult situation with your furry family members! Know that I am thinking of you an praying for a solution that you can feel comfortable with, even though any so called solution will be painful. Love and Prayers!

  29. Dee

    Mary,so sorry you are having so many problems with your dogs. Hazel looks so sweet but I think she probably will get more aggressive with your other animals. As others have mentioned,she probably needs to be the only animal in a household. It would be hard to give her up her up but you have had the others longer. My friends dog is 10 yrs old and even “attacks” me at times when I go there.(I visit a lot because we are quilting buddies of 20yrs and I was before the dog!) so some never outgrow it.

  30. Mareen

    Concord care and Marline are going to be a blessing for you and Rox. I pray it all works out. Gracie has loved going there for 3 years. Marline is her second mom……good luck prayers for everything to work out Mary!

  31. Susan

    I am so sorry to hear of your impossible decision to make, you will make it through-my thoughts are with you.

  32. Colleen

    Thank you for writing to us all you are in a terrible situation a heart breaking situation it is so kind of you to let us know what is happening at your house. I can’t imagine the pain you are feeling dealing with this. I can’t offer any advice as it is you who is living this what ever you do I and the others who read your blog know it is what you feel is best in your situation.

    Every one has a story and here’s mine I knew a family who had a cat (a declawed cat) it was having litter box issues (not using it) the family was expecting their 3 rd child they decided the cat had to go so they looked and asked and no one wanted the misbehaving cat. They were going to put the cat down. My husband and I took the cat into our house with one cat and 2 small dogs already. The new to us cat never enjoyed the company of the other animals and the other animals learned to avoid the new one. No fights no injuries no friendships so over time we came to see the new cat was afraid and after having her claws removed had no way to get away (such as up a tree or the drapes) so my husband and I made the decision to NOT bring any new animals into our lives until that cat was across the rainbow bridge……all our other pets have passed on we are only owned by that cat and she is finally happy and seems to feel safe.
    If we out live her I want a dog, a rescue dog we will take our time finding one that is right for two old people.

    Again I wish you all the best and thank you for sharing what is troubling you

  33. Nancy Pleimann

    Mary – Give it some more time. Hazel is still a puppy. Good Luck. Nancy

  34. Kathy

    It’s tough to have to make a decision as the two dogs are not “meshing” and becoming a loving pack. May the Lord give you wisdom about the next step. It’s hard to let go of those you love, despite their behavior. We live with two cats that are incompatible and so far the older female cat just hisses at the younger male to keep him away from her. She was the first cat and the other cat arrived 2 years later. It’s hard to judge what will transpire when new “fur” children are added to a household. Hazel sounds delightful, and Rox is perhaps not interacting with her or it’s the other way around. Keep calm and pray until you find peace in your heart about the next step to take.

  35. Linda

    Mary, I am so sorry you are going through these trying times. I know all the animals are so important to you, as you love them all so much. I hope the situation will improve for you soon.

  36. Mary

    I was so pleased to see a post from you but so sad about your dogs. I know from reading your blog how much you love for each and every animal you encounter. Trust your heart and pray for guidance. Enclosing an email hug.

  37. Dorothy

    Jack Russells are a very demanding breed—not my favorite breed—they are extremely one sided when it comes to who belongs to who, and who belongs in the right pecking order according to them. I wish I lived close enough to come and scoop Rox up and bring her into a safe enviroment filled with love–which I know you provide for her, but no one needs to be “bullied”–whether we have 2 feet or 4 feet

  38. Janice

    Mary, what an awful time you are having – and the broken pots would have had me sitting on the ground weeping. Just the icing on the cake. I am wondering if there is a better place to take Hazel to have training? I am upset that Petco banned her after hearing of the scuffle! Isn’t that what training is supposed to do? Socialize the dog in a controlled environment? Shame on them! You need help, not to be kicked out of a class! Jack Russell’s are feisty little dogs but I wonder if there’s a way to keep her. I do think it’s good for Rox to have her “job” as long as she seems happy doing it. My daughter has a dog that’s aggressive with other dogs and she boards dogs for a living. She put up metal gates between certain rooms so that the aggressive dog is separate from the boarders. The gates are attached with screws to the frames of the doors and so very strong. They open and shut very easily and securely. The last thing you want is a boarded dog to be hurt by your own! Over the years she has discovered that it’s big dogs that her dog doesn’t like. He is fine with little ones. I, myself, would give back Hazel, as much as it would hurt me – she is still young and adoptable. And adorable! But finding another place for obedience and socializing classes would definitely help and keeping them apart until she’s better may be a solution. We are all so sad that you are going through this and know that we will support you with whatever you decide.

  39. Martha Engstler

    Tough love is never easy. You have loved the dogs that you boarded, to bad to give that part of your life up. I agree that Hazel sounds like she needs to be an only “child.” It’s never easy to give up on something you wanted so badly to work. You have lots and lots of prayers, support and thoughts from your blog friends.

  40. molly

    My heart and prayers are with you. I am an animal lover too. Being an animal parent can be very heart breaking at times.

  41. Sue Blazevski

    So sorry to hear of your problems. Do you think Hazel’s aggression will calm down if she is spayed? Terrors are quirky kinds of dogs, but she is young and some behaviors can be changed. Good luck with that–I know you have been patient with her, and maybe she just needs more time. Some dogs (puppies) just have to be the alpha dog. Hope you have luck finding a home for Rox. I have faith that the perfect home will be found–just give it more time. I hate to see you give up boarding peoples “babies” I read the love in everyone of your posts.

  42. Kathy

    Thank yu for sharing this with us as I have thought of it so much what was bothering you with the pets. Course I worried about all the kitty cats cause they are so helpless sometimes. It is sad you can’t do your boarding cause if you lived closer to me in NY I would use your services as that is my big worry leaving my pets behind with someone I can trust confidently so hence we now travel in a motor home when needed with our pets with us. YEH big expense but my pets need to be safe. So you have lots to think about and maybe it was time to end boarding so you and Rick don’t have the responsibility and retire from it. You a smart lady and will make wise choices for your fur babies and if it takes all summer long to figure out a solution, know your friends and readers will wait as this is a big choice and you need to stay vigilant to he safety of all the other animals there.

  43. Ann Roth

    I know this hurts. I had a similar problem with 2 of my kitties. My timid one would leave home for days
    and come back days later. Finally she didn’t come home at all. I worried and missed her so much.
    Later, I found out that she moved in with a neighbor about 1 mile down the street!!! She’s the only kitty and they love her so much. I have visitation!!! Hope you can find a similiar solution.
    Sooooo sorry.

  44. Marilyn

    Believe me, I know about not being able to think of anything else – I just got a momma kitty and her three kittens to the shelter last week – I could not stop stressing about it – considered going to my doctor for help.

    The shelter put them together as we got them captured and the control officer told me how they were laying all over each other as they got together. Momma is for sure going to be fixed and I hope the kitties (sent a donation with them) then the director out there told the officer she has a “friendly farm” that will take all of them. I hoping friendly farms are as good to their kitties and you are!!

    My heart breaks for you and will be praying for the best solution for all! God Bless

  45. Ginney Camden

    I seldom respond but so much enjoy reading your posts. You have such a hard decision to fact but I can tell you from our experience that I would get rid of Hazel. She is adorable but apparently wants to be the Queen of her home. She should be with a loving family and be their only dog. Then you can enjoy your other pets and your boarders in safety like you have always done. Hazel is young and will soon bond with a new family.

  46. Diana

    I agree with Ginney. Hazel is young and will adapt to a new home, whereas Rox is older and is so part of your family. Such a hard decision and it’s easy for us arm chair quarterbacks to tell you what to do. You will do what is right for all, just sad that you have to make the decision. So, in the meantime, go hug a cat!! My answer for everything bad! Love you, Mary!

  47. Jan

    Sorry you are having such a tough time. My (unasked for) opinion is that Hazel needs to be an “only”. Not all animals do well in groups. Rox should be able to live out her life with the family she loves and knows, and not be exiled (punished) because of Hazel’s aggressive behavior. And then there is the question – as she gets older, stronger and more settled into her disposition, will Hazel start going after the other animals or worse yet “nip” at a visiting child? Always hard to see anyone go especially- when you are emotionally vested in all concerned. Yet, it seems clear to me (and the vet as well as others) that Hazel needs to be an “only”. She would also benefit from extensive training – one on one. You would then also be able to relax a bit, as would all the other animals on the farm, and continue your boarding which is of mutual benefit to you and your clients.

  48. Rhoda Ebersole

    Crying just does you in.
    You have a bully dog and be thankful you learned about it before something worse
    Happened or a child was attacked. This happened to my niece. Sad but true.
    You know what you have to do and that is why God gave us humans brains.
    I am sorry this happened but you will survive this.
    Love and Hugs,

  49. Ann Barlament

    Great big hugs to you!! I know the heartache you have.

    I bought my house 1984 and Greta came into my life the following year. She was some mixed breed of Water Spaniel. My neighbor kids adored her and they all played outside together. Shortly after she was 7 years old, Greta attacked me. I put my knee into her chest, to put space between us. She lunged again, bit through my hand, nails dug into my body…she snapped. I retreated into the bathroom and could hear her growling on the other side of the door. For an hour, I sat trying to calm myself down from the shock…wonder if she had done this to one of the neighbor kids? That day, Greta won a battle. A week later, I ended the war…because no one should live in fear of “next time”.

    Please Lord, give Mary strength, patience and understanding as she tries to find a solution to her problems. And I will continue to keep you tucked into my thoughts and prayers.

  50. Mary Says Sew!

    Mary, I am so sorry you are having to deal with such a horrible situation. You work so hard with all your animals, your farm, quilting, music, and taking care of others – all your fans here admire all the wonderful things you do!

    From the distance I have as one of your readers and fans, I see how you have rearranged your life to accommodate Hazel. You’ve said you’re juggling dogs 24/7. You took Hazel to obedience classes but can no longer attend because of Hazel attacking Rox.

    Rox has been attacked twice seriously enough that she needed medical attention. You’re now trying to remove a small, timid Rox from her longtime happy home, because of Hazel. But she’s too afraid there to allow anyone to pet her.

    Your vet advised you that Hazel should be the one to go.

    I agree with your other readers that Hazel will move on to other animals as targets after Rox. All your other animals are at risk, as well as any animals who wonder onto your property and maybe even children or adult visitors.

    You have given up your boarding service, which you clearly love doing, as do your canine visitors and their people. Wasn’t being able to board dogs one of your retirement goals?

    You have the option of returning Hazel to her breeder. The breeder understands the problem. I know that will be a heartbreaking thing to do, but please think about what will be the best option for all of you.

  51. Mary Ann Platt

    My heart goes out to you. I can feel the love you have for your animals. I have 5 rescue cats. I have 7 total cat’s. We have had some issues, but have been able to work through the. Five of the cats live inside. I am keeping you in my prayers. Thanks for your blog. I enjoy it immensely.

  52. Jan Smith

    After spending some time thinking about your tough situation, I wonder if Hazel could wear one of the “gentle muzzles”? They always seemed kind of cruel to me, but after talking with some people who used them on,their dogs in social situations, I was assured that they are quite humane. My other thought was medication. I know that seems extreme, but this is an extreme situation. Dogs, I’m sure you know, have mental difficulties as humans do. Maybe she needs to be calmed a bit, especially during her first couple of puppy years? A different trainer would certainly be worth a shot. Your vet would know of qualified trainers in your area.
    I feel for little Rox, that she might feel she is being punished by being sent away. She has had her happy home life upset.
    Hoping for a good solution for all of you.

  53. Deborah K.

    My heart breaks for you….I have read and enjoyed all the stories about Hazel. Such a precious puppy. and now this…..I feel sorry for Rox who is timid and hasn’t done anything wrong…and then Hazel how difficult it would be to give her up. We understand because most of us have been there who have multiple animals in our home. I know that you will make the right decision for you and your family… my heart breaks for you because whatever decision you make will be so hard.

  54. Sandra Pierson

    Having had to find a beloved pet a new home, I know exactly how you feel. Keeping you in my prayers.

    I do have a quilting question. When you float blocks on your quilt, which fabric do you put for your first border to accomplish this? I know you posted on thus with one of your quilts but I cannot find it.



    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Sandra – to float your blocks, use the same fabric that is used for the outer triangles, assuming you quilt is on point.

  55. Polly Perkins

    How sad and awful for you all. I know how much you love your dogs. I have had a similar problem with a cat. Bootsie wants to be an only. She likes some and hates some others. I spent my time being a referee. It is so stressful for us all. As soon as I turn my back she attacks. I have tried to find a home for her but to no avail. I have resorted to keeping her in the spare bedroom by herself. So far she seems to be okay there …. of course we visit her to play and pet her but I wish we could have everyone out and getting along. One cat even ran away…. Bob opened the door and he ran out (never had been interested in any open door at all). I have not seen him since and I miss him.

  56. Susie

    Mary this is so frustrating! I am a little surprised about Hazel, because I know she has to be part Westie. I have bred Westie’s for years, in fact I just sent home my last puppy of my summer litter on Monday. Westie’s are for the most part just happy souls and love other dogs. But they do sense a fearful intimidated dog and that triggers some kind of bully response in them. When they think they can be a bully they will be, so it’s best that you send Rox to the board and care almost as a therapy dog.
    Hazel does need supervised visits with other dogs that are not fearful. Someone she likes to play with. Not an older dog but one in her age group. One that will stand their ground. I’ve seen this have a positive outcome. A young lab or even better a young terrier to become a friend.

  57. Linda Baker

    As soon as I read your original post about dog issues, I knew it had to be something about Rox. When my mom passed away her Lhaso was nine years old. He moved in with us and lived another five years. I wouldn’t describe him as timid, but he never did warm up to either of my cats, just went about his business and didn’t bother anyone. I had heard that the “Asian” dogs could be headstrong, but that wasn’t our Shaggy. I feel so bad for you right now, and if I could, I would help you out with Rox. Keep us updated, as we’re all interested and concerned for you.

  58. Des

    Mary, I am a long time JRT owner. Please go to the JRTCA (Jack Russell Terrier Club of America) website & read the bad dog talk. Jack Russells are well known for same sex aggression & also aggression with other dogs. This is a breed of dog bred to hunt. They also have a section advising that JRT’s & cats are a risky combination. They look like little angels but watch out when that devil side makes an appearance. Good luck with a decision sure to break some hearts. Des

  59. Diane

    Mary, I have read and re-read all of the messages here. You have a wonderful group here who truly love you and want what is best for you and your human and animal family. I honestly do not know the answer, but I can say Hazel’s actions worry me. I have thought whether I should share this, but here it is for your info. Our friend’s son rang the neighbor’s doorbell to sell Boy Scout popcorn. Their dog jumped through the screen door and attacked him by biting his head so he covered it with his arm. He was only 12 at the time. He is 18 now and still has scars on his arm. He had to have counseling to get used to dogs again. Luckily, he had a Golden Retriever which helped him heal. I know you would be distressed if this happened with Hazel. I can tell all of us in your blog are worried about you and hope for the best. Diane in Central Ohio

  60. Becky from IA

    I have a terrier mix and she is VERY ALPHA…. When we walk and we meet other dogs we cross the street. I don’t trust her because she sometime picks a fight and I don’t want her to hurt someone else’s dog. I don’t trust her around small children…..we don’t have any. We have a cat and they do great together….go figure! I love her dearly and I can’t imagine what you are going through. I’m praying for you.

  61. San

    Goodness Mary, I’m so sorry about this. Has Hasel been fixed. Dolly calmed down after she had her surgery. I do feel bad for you and know I could never have another dog here, as Dolly is so bonded to me . Saints are rather protective. Perhaps your pup is protective of you. Dogs come into and out of our lives for many reasons. Here’s hoping the right situation will come along.

  62. Cathy

    What trials you have had to endure. I am so sorry. I have been in your shoes. I rescued an adult dog, a female, & she did wonderfully with my male dogs except for my male Sheltie . She hates him & she didn’t like my other female dog. We went through the same ordeal, fights & vet trips. One day she attacked my Sheltie when they were both on the stairs, I grabbed her by the collar to pull her away, she jumped down to the floor & landed gracefully, me not so much & I ended up breaking my knee! That was the turning point. I still have all the dogs but now all but Pooh (the aggressor) are out during the day while Pooh is in her big crate in the living room where she is still able to see me most of he time. In the evening the other female & Sheltie go into the bedroom & Pooh comes out of her crate. She is out all evening & then Pooh gets to sleep in the bedroom at night with me & one of the other male dogs she loves dearly, all the rest of the dogs are wherever they choose in the house then in the morning Pooh goes back in her crate. She doesn’t mind it a bit, she has food, water, toys & a blanket & she’s still part of the action. It sounds as if Hazel has realized Rox is the “weakest link” & is taking advantage of that. I’m really surprised the “dog whisperer” said to get rid of Rox. Personally I would be wary of him. Where I live in IN we have a “dog whisperer” & I have seen him in action. I wouldn’t have him anywhere near any of my dogs! It is an almost impossible situation for you, I know & I am sure you have agonized over it. I volunteer at a dog rescue & we have found that when one of our dogs has decided to be an alpha we have to kennel them by themselves, they just aren’t going to back down. My prayers are with you in the decision you are working out.

  63. Fuelicia Hamlin

    Mary, by reading your posts about Hazel I know that you love her a lot. But I also know that you love Roxie. That picture of Hazel is so deceiving, it looks so sweet. I know that is hard to give up an animal you are attached to, however, I pray that you will find a good solution or a compromise. Hang in there. Hugs.

  64. Bea knight

    Hi Mary,
    So sorry to hear about Hazel. I had a wire fox Terrier from a breeder and when she was a puppy everything was fine but when she got older I would take her to dog park she would attack other dogs . The jack russel mix I had died of old age and she became the only dog. We did not take her to dog park anymore. She was the only dog in the house she was fine with people. She died at nine from cancer. She was my sunshine girl. I loved her so much.
    Praying for a solution for you.
    Bea knight

  65. Barbara

    This may be my first comment. I am so sorry you are facing this situation. I wish you well while you make the adjustments to your household. I love your animal stories and pictures and I can see what a big place in your heart you have for animals.

    May you find peace in your choices, and I wish endless blessings on Hazel and Roxie.

  66. Pam

    I had to re-home a Boxer pup that I had that would beat up on my older poodle, it was awful…but I found him a great home, and a year later, I got one of his puppies! Who is very mellow…..and low energy. Dexter had too much energy, and I just couldn’t be home all day.

    Have you looked at Victoria Stillwell? Perhaps you need a personal trainer. She is teaching new trainers who have a positive way to deal with behavior issues. It is worth a shot. She had a program on Animal Planet called It’s Me Or The Dog….

    Prayers for you..I really missed Dexter, and was very happy to have seen him a few months later..and he was happy…he had a family with little kids, and a big yard to run in. His new “Dad” took him everywhere in his truck. He was happy. I still cried for months…but my poodle deserved to live out his last years in peace, and not fear.


  67. Dorothy Sheldrake

    Broken pots tooooo. That would mean more tears for me.
    Praying for you.

  68. Carolyn

    I know you love Hazel, but why should Roxi lose her home because of a bully. What will happen when she attacks Tilley or one of the goats or kills all the chickens? Will you find them some place for them to go for the day and let them sleep caged up too? You were given advice from a vet who has seen all this happen and ignored it. Others have shared their experiences and those were ignored too. So should it happen again then whose to blame besides Hazel?

  69. Darlynn Venne

    Sorry Ms. Mary for all your sincere concerns about Hazel, Rox and boarding dogs.
    I live in IL. On 1 acre lot with 2 dogs and 2 boys.
    One dog is a Bernese Mountain. He is 7.5 and a complete baby. I love him so. Everyone that meets him, agrees, he is adorable….even at 120 pounds.
    I also have a 2 year old Maltese/shih tzu mix. She certainly is the queen of the house, yet loves, loves, loves other small dogs.
    If you would like to give Rox a try at my house, I would be willing to take her.

    That being said, Rox was will you first. Do you really want to give her up due to Hazel’s poor behavior? Just asking.
    Seems like Hazel should be the one to go.
    I am sure you would feel this is a failure, but your other dogs and boarded dogs would not.

    Either way, I am open to see if Ms. Rox would like to live in IL.

    1. CountryThreads Post author

      Darlynn – thank you for your sweet offer. Rox has been here for 14 months – folks who decided to move chose not to take her along. I will keep your kind offer in mind.

  70. Susie Q

    As a house with two dogs and a grandchild 2,000 miles away I now travel as much as possible. BUT there are the dogs that need taking care of when I am gone. The vet sitting ends up costing three times my plane ticket which is crazy so I am sad to hear you are not boarding dogs….. I know those households miss you.

    I don’t think there is a good solution that takes your heart into consideration. Do hope you come to a decision and the sooner the better for all.

  71. Diane

    I love that you have so many of us who love and care about you and your human and animal family. My heart breaks for you over this hard decision. I was a teacher for 30 years and do believe in second chances and that people and animals can change. Can Hazel be taught not to hurt? I don’t know about Terriers; we had a gentle Irish Setter and a hyper Heinze 57, but they got along. I am hoping that Hazel will grow out of this behavior. Keeping all of you in my heart, Mary. Hugs, Diane in Central Ohio

  72. Teresa

    My only suggestion is to keep a muzzle on Hazel until she is rehomed. She is an alpha dog and a JRT. They really are a different kind of dog to handle and most do best as the only pet in the home. They are notorious hunters and will kill cats, poultry, rabbits, anything that moves and they can chase. Ours can catch gophers and squirrels and even small birds if the fly low enough that she can jump and get them. She is extremely fast and quick, it’s what they were bred for.

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