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Kids and Dog Safety
Young kids are naturally drawn to dogs, and it’s no surprise why – these fluffy tail-waggers are about as loveable as they come.
Make sure your child has a safe and happy relationship with all dogs that cross their path by teaching them how to properly approach, pet and play with them. Here are some tips to pass along:
- Petting is a privilege, not a right. Though most dogs love a good belly rub, they may not always welcome a rough pat on the head or tug on the ear. Make sure your child knows to always be gentle and kind when petting their canine friend.
- Dogs are not toys. Even the most mild-tempered pooch doesn’t enjoy being tossed around or jumped on. Encourage your children to play nicely, and never ride or push your dog.
- Ask permission. If your child wants to pet a dog that is not yours, have them ask the owner if it’s ok that they share their love.
- Respect the dog. Even after getting permission from its owner, make sure the dog is welcoming the interaction. Have your child put their hand low and into the shape of a fist, inviting the dog to come to them first.
- Watch your volume. Children tend to make loud or high-pitched noises, which can alarm or scare a dog. Remind your child to never yell at or near their fluffy friends – it'll make for a safer play environment.
- Oversee the interaction. As a parent, it’s important you watch over your child when they’re playing with or petting a dog – even if it’s your household pet. This way you can manage the situation if either one of them becomes uncomfortable.
Taking these simple steps will help keep a dog calm and make it fun and safe for your child to interact with them – let the cuteness begin!