I desperately need your advice. I have a rescue Labrador that I've had for three months. He was terribly, terribly abused and neglected. He's three years old and I named him Jet. Little is known about him because he was found on the streets but the vet said it's most likely he never had any kind of socialization and was probably a backyard dog. He jumps at the slightest sound and drops to the ground and cowers. I have him mostly house-trained now and he will walk on a leash and has learned a few commands. He's come a long way! He's so tenderhearted and just wants love and attention all the time. I have given him lots of attention but I do work during the day and he is kenneled, which doesn't appear to bother him at all. He's out of the kennel the rest of the time. The first day I brought him home he was so filthy that I gave him a bath. He turned and bit at me but didn't connect and I knew it was just all the stress of that day. After he had been here about a week, he was down on the ground sort of playing with a bone. He doesn't know how to play and so I was excited to see him doing something that was making him happy. I got down on the floor and crawled over to him and put my face down by him to nuzzle him and he came up and bit me on the cheek and tore my earlobe. We decided the reason he did that was because no one had ever played with him before and I must've made him feel threatened. Today I had him out in the front yard with my cocker spaniel for the first time. I've been working with him on staying in the yard. A neighbor stopped to ask about my new dog and she came over and sat on the grass about 3 feet from me. Jet was laying down and I was petting him. He got up and walked over to her and sat down. She reached out and began petting him and then without a growl or a warning of any kind he bit her in the face! He certainly could have bit harder, but he broke the skin in two places. I've racked my brain wondering if he felt threatened because she was a stranger or what it was but I can say unequivocally that she did nothing to provoke him. When we go for walks, if he sees another dog, he will lunge on the leash and want to fight. My vet said, "Cindy, if you lived on the streets you would be aggressive too. It's survival of the fittest out there and he's had to learn how to protect himself," which made sense. If I see another dog, I turn and go the other way to avoid any confrontations. Has anything like this ever happened to any of you and if so what did you do? I've never worried for a second when I've taken him for walks past little kids and toddlers, but if he attacked one of them like he did my friend today I would never forgive myself. I don't know if I dare do it now. I love him so much and I want him to be happy and adjusted. I know that parts of him are broken and I'm willing to take all the time and training necessary for him to adjust. I just need some advice from people much smarter than myself… I would appreciate your reply. Thank you very much!