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My wife had our son on the floor the other day playing with him and doing tummy time. Tyson our dobe was just laying beside her and my son chillin out. My wife got up to get a glass of water and came back to pick up Colin and Tyson snarled at her showing his teeth. He didn't growl or anything just showed his teeth and didn't snap at her. Tyson has always been protective of Colin since he was born and during the day sleeps by Colin's crib when he's in there. Tyson has only done this one time and hasn't done it since then. Could this potentially lead to an issue or do you think he might have just been spooked?
 

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I recommedn getting some training help. I have heard of Dobermans who would not let the parents discipline the kids. So go put the dog up first - it gives you a cool down period. But seriously he does need to understand that he comes after the people. Do not leave the baby one the floor ever with the dog alone.
 

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It would concern em enough to have someone qualified take a look at the situation. There's really nothing the dog neds to "protect" the baby from so that in itself would concern me. Probably very workable situation but again it's a bit concerning.

I also would NEVER leave a baby and dog unsupervised. If god forbid something does happen, you have NO IDEA what happened, how it happened, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
He has had training in obedience and stuff but thats it. How do I go about finding someone to train/look at him for this situation?

Another note - we have an open living room/kitchen area and where Colin was lying in relation to the fridge is like 5 feet away so she could keep an eye on Tyson and Colin at the same time. We never leave him unsupervised.
 

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Tyson has always been protective of Colin since he was born and during the day sleeps by Colin's crib when he's in there.
Who has he been protecting Colin from, you and your wife?

Tyson has only done this one time and hasn't done it since then. Could this potentially lead to an issue or do you think he might have just been spooked?
Yes because a snarl is a warning, after warnings come bites. Please seek professional help for your Dobie. Tyson needs to understand that you and your wife are not a threat in any way, shape, or form to your child and should be able to move as you please around him without him getting an attitude and warning you guys.
 

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Are you really sure it was a snarl? If there was no growl or other vocalization, it could very well be that the dog showed your wife his pretty smile. This is actually a submissive gesture and if she were leaning over him, I would not rule this out. Many Dobes "smile" like this.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well he has no reason to protect us really. No one has ever robbed us or anything :) He just likes to always be around and keep an eye on things. I thought that would be normal since Tyson recognizes Colin is the little pup in the family so to speak.

I got Tyson from a breeder in Ohio. Titan Doberman Pinschers...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I wasn't there when it happened. She said it was a snarl but he has smiled before. I think it just caught her off guard because he has never done that when playing/picking up Colin. She said he just showed his teeth. No growl or no snapping. Didn't open his mouth like he was gonna bite.
 

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I wasn't there when it happened. She said it was a snarl but he has smiled before. I think it just caught her off guard because he has never done that when playing/picking up Colin. She said he just showed his teeth. No growl or no snapping. Didn't open his mouth like he was gonna bite.
Well, if the dog has never shown any aggression to you or the family, I would not be concerned at all. Has your wife seen him smile before? Maybe ask her if it was that or like that. I just don't see a huge reason to be concerned if there were no vocalization. He sounds like a typical, velcro dobe who loves being with his family. But of course, these things are never best diagnosed over the internet, so I say, follow your gut.
 

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I agree with Incredible, this sounds like the "submissive grin" thing to me; it can certainly look scary if you don't know what it is. But do involve a trainer if you think it was more than that.

Check out some books on dog body language, it will help you tremendously!
Hope that helps. :)
 

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Well, if the dog has never shown any aggression to you or the family, I would not be concerned at all. Has your wife seen him smile before? Maybe ask her if it was that or like that. I just don't see a huge reason to be concerned if there were no vocalization. He sounds like a typical, velcro dobe who loves being with his family. But of course, these things are never best diagnosed over the internet, so I say, follow your gut.
The reason I'd err on the side of getting someone in there is because there's a young child involved. I'd rather be too cautious than end up with someone getting even a mild bite. It could very well be a grin (Simon loves to smile at us!), but without being able to see it I would personally hesitate to say "don't worry."
 
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The first thing that came to my mind when you said there was no growl or sound was that it was a greeting/grin. Snarls almost always are accompanied by at least a low rumble, if not a growl or other warning. A lot of new Dobe owners have posted how they had been punishing their dogs for growling at them when they came home, only to be chagrined to learn that they were disciplining a smile. Dobes are VERY personable dogs, and you really have to get to know them like a child, a friend, a relative. They are complex beings. But, never-the-less, until you are 100% sure what's going on, avoid this scenario! Don't leave your baby on the floor with the dog.
 

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I too wondered if your dobe smiled at your wife. Coco is a huge smiler and has done so since she was a wee pup. But the first time I ever saw it I thought she was snarling at me too and felt a little uneasy. Then I did some research and realized she was smiling. It freaks my one friend out everytime she comes over because she cannot accept that Coco is smiling and not snarling at her.

It may be good to look into some further training to put your wife at ease and figure out what is really going on. Good luck. :butfly:
 
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Zelda my husky snarls/bares her teeth whn she is guarding food around the other dogs. She never makes a sound and she will lunge after enough snarling. No growls or grumbles ever, just lots of teeth. I would err on the side of caution especially with how this happened due to an action from the wife. Why all of a sudden at that moment would the dog decide to "smile"?
 

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My dogs have that same sheepish grin. Sometimes if I tickle one of them beneath his eye, he will grin. Have you seen your dog grin before?
 

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Zelda my husky snarls/bares her teeth whn she is guarding food around the other dogs. She never makes a sound and she will lunge after enough snarling. No growls or grumbles ever, just lots of teeth. I would err on the side of caution especially with how this happened due to an action from the wife. Why all of a sudden at that moment would the dog decide to "smile"?
Because it sounds like she was bending down to pick up her boy. I know sometimes if I bend down in front of one of my two, they become submissive.

I don't know, I would just keep an eye on things. Watch for other signs like staring, stalking, growling, hair up on back, those are a couple that I can think of off the top of my head. And IMO I would never leave your little guy on the floor and walk away with ANY breed of dog. It only takes seconds. But like someone else said, go with your gut. Keep us posted.
 
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