Family dog might have to be put down


So when I was pregnant (end of first trimester, start of second), I ended up rescuing a dog. This dog has a ton of personality, funny but a bit mischievous at times. Knows how to sit, lay down and shake a paw. Wasn’t the best at coming back but knew where his home was. When he was a puppy he was afraid of cats, I didn’t think much of it at the time. Later on he started barking, chasing them and it progressed into catching them.. (this started after our baby was born and about 2 months old). Needless to say I had my hands full. It’s been a few months since but the town is now debating on putting him down.. I have possibly found someone multiple hours away to take the dog. But the dog has finally grown out of being a mischievous puppy and has become more of a family dog. What should/could I do about the situation at hand?

Answered by NiceDay Psychologist Martijn Thomas

Thanks for your message. You indicate that your dog you had rescued is now being considered to be put down by the local town after chasing and catching some of the local cats. Your message suggests that you have grown quite fond of your dog and I can imagine that this situation can be quite upsetting. From your question it wasn't too clear if you wanted support emotionally or practically. Nonetheless I have tried to provide some guidance below that may help you in this situation:

  • It is first important to consider how you feel, assess your options, and think about what you would like to happen in this situation. It can help to consider the short term and long term advantages and disadvantages of each scenario (for example keeping the dog or giving it to someone else).
  • After that you can try to clearly express how you are feeling to others and confidently and specifically communicate your request. Be assertive; assertiveness is a way of communicating whereby you take into account your own interests, but also the interests of the other. It means that you express your thoughts and feelings in a direct and respectful way. It can be helpful to consider what you are willing to compromise in this situation so that you can come to a solution that works for both you, and the town.

Maybe this article can help you: 

Kind regards,


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