Jane & "Maddie's" Adoption Story:
By: Jane Marckstadt

We, my daughter and I, adopted "Maddie" a 1 yr. old spayed female Merlequin Dane from Gentle Giants in Nov of 2003. Maddie though a beautiful and loving dog to my daughter, vehemently hated my 10yr old English Setter to the point that she attacked her (totally without cause) and actually went out of her way to do so (went though a door to get to her) inflicting deep bite wounds on her neck and hindquarters (requiring stitches) before I could rescue "Phoebe". This happened after introductions from separate fenced areas and hands on. After 4 months of trying to cope with this situation, I made the decision to return Maddie, saddened but resolute that this was best for all concerned. This was a very stressful experience to say the least for all of us, dogs included.

At the same time Maddie was having diarrhea, and had a minor fungal infection (we were feeding Pedigree), in our case the diarrhea was caused by a severe case of round worms. Maddie was also 20 lbs underweight when she came to us.

Why she was not tested prior to coming to us is a good question because we took her to our vet the day after we got her home. I don't know how much you paid for your Dane but Maddie cost $600.00 (which we didn't get back). Frankly at that point I was happy just to be able to return her and caulked the adoption fee up as a charitable contribution.

Tracy seemed to feel that the attacks were caused by something Phoebe had done or something we had done. I did not argue the point with her ,after numerous discussions with my vet, a friend who is a long time breeder of pedigreed Danes, and a professional handler of large breed show dogs regarding her aggressiveness to other dogs and Phoebe in particular. The general feeling was that this situation was not going to get any better and if fact might get worse. I went with the people I know and whose opinions I trust vs Tracy. I will add that I have had giant breed dogs (Great Pyrenees) before, one rescue and one from puppy hood, so it's not as if I was a novice when it came to dealing with large breeds.

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