Every day we see children on the street who come to pet dogs they do not know, with very excessive confidence. Something that can not only scare the dog but can be extremely dangerous.
The same is true for homes where there are dogs and a child arrives, or for homes where there are children and a new dog arrives. Dogs and children must be educated, as it is vitally important that they both know how to respect and care for themselves.
Index of contents
- 1 How to educate a child to interact with dogs?
- 1.0.1 How a child should act in front of an unknown dog
- 1.0.2 How a child should act in front of a family dog
- 2 Can a dog attack a child?
- 3 How to train a dog to interact with children?
- 4 How should I introduce my dog, my new child?
How to educate a child to interact with dogs?
The first thing we should know is that it is not the same to educate a child to behave with a dog that we have at home, that is to say that it is part of our family, for example, with a dog that can cross the street and to the one who doesn’t know anything.
When we say “boy”, we are obviously referring to boys and girls under fourteen or fifteen years of age, although above all at ages under ten, where they are still unconscious by nature and can do something that harms the dog.
How a child should act in front of an unknown dog
- It is not advisable to approach an unknown dog, touch it, speak to it, or stare into its eyes. We must make our child learn this correctly.
- Before trying to pet a dog, you should ask its owner beforehand. If the owner is not there, you should never go near the dog.
- If the owner agrees that our child can pet the dog, because the how its owner knows its character and knows that it will not pose a danger, our child must approach his hand very gently and leave it still, so that the dog can smell him.
- Once the child’s hand is solidified, you can pet the dog very gently on its back and the sides of its neck. You should never pet your head, muzzle, or other parts that may disturb the dog.
- Do not run towards the dog, do not scream or make sudden movements that may frighten him.
How a child should act in front of a family dog
When the dog is not a stranger but is a family dog or our own dog, our child must follow the previous rules and also add new ones:
- The dog is not a toy, not to ride it or make tricks on how to pull its tail or ears.
- Do not disturb the dog when it is sleeping or eating, ever.
- Do not scare the dog, never hit him and obviously respect him as one more member of the family.
- Never put your face in front of the dog’s face, from its muzzle.
- Do not hug him as if he were a person (that overwhelms many dogs).
- Never remove anything from your mouth (neither toys nor food).
- Do not play with the tug of war with toys.
Actually making a dog happy is very simple, you just have to follow certain guidelines so as not to disturb him and that there is a perfect coexistence in the family.
Can a dog attack a child?
Not only can it, but it will, a frightened dog can take a bite to defend itself. A vigilant but will attack if someone unknown approaches. Dogs are not bad, let’s not be confused, we also act the same on a different scale.
It is simply that you have to educate children so that they know how to respect dogs as they deserve, as one of the family and not as a hobby / toy.
Never and under no circumstances should a small child be left alone with a dog, the child may innocently harm or provoke the dog, he will not know interpret the dog’s signals when it shows danger and can be injured.
From the age of twelve or fourteen, children already acquire some responsibility and knowledge about how to interpret these signals. However, both the child and the dog are always the responsibility of an adult.
Dogs are loving, noble, loyal and very familiar, as long as they are well behaved and children respect them. If our child doesn’t follow the rules, we simply shouldn’t let him come near dogs.
How to train a dog to interact with children?
Dogs are extremely intelligent beings, but obviously they have a limit and there are things that they do not know how to evaluate. For example, why a child is pulling his tail and ears and nobody does anything.
It is our responsibility, and only ours, correctly educate our dog or puppy to prevent you from acquiring inappropriate behavior. A well-educated dog is not only a guarantee against possible problems with children, but also a guarantee for ourselves.
If our dog has a bad habit of biting while playing or being a bit rough, we should teach him to bite his toys with the game so that he does not bite children or adults (obviously playing): How to teach a puppy not to bite.
How should I introduce my dog, my new child?
Ideally, while the child is in the hospital the first few days, we bring the dog a used diaper or clothes worn by the baby so that our dog identifies its smell.
When our son leaves the hospital and arrives home for the first time, we must follow a very simple ritual to introduce him to the dog:
- The dog must have come from a long walk, where he ran and spent his energy. The more tired and relaxed you are, the better.
- We must go to greet the dog as always, cuddle and pet it but without exciting him much.
- We must let the dog come to smell the child. It is completely normal and necessary, since dogs know other dogs and people through their scent. Our dog must have a chance to smell it or even lick it. We should NEVER let this be done without supervision, a responsible adult should be in charge of the child and another adult in charge of the dog, letting them smell and know it but with caution.
- Dogs detect our nervousness, we must be calm and happy, talk to the dog, etc …
Common sense is our main asset, if our dog is aggressive we must completely skip these steps. And whether the dog is aggressive or not, remember never to leave children and dogs alone.