Today is National Kids and Pets Day
National Kids and Pets Day is both a day to celebrate the bonds children and pets can share and a day remember safety where our pets and children are concerned.
There are many benefits from having a pet in a child’s life. From fostering natural nurturing abilities to developing responsibilities, pets have a life long impact on a child’s development.
How can you prevent bites?
It is important to remember that small children as well as the pets may not know their limitations and should not be left alone with each other. They should always be supervised to prevent injury to both the child and the animal.
Every year, about 4,000 people (and very possibly a lot more) in Kenya get bitten by dogs. More than half of these people are children.
There are many ways to prevent bites:
- Learn dog body language and point out signals to your child(ren)
- Teach children to respect animals
- Supervise children and dogs all the time
- Prevent and manage properly so kids and dogs are never alone together for any period of time. It only takes a second for something to happen
Dogs are living creatures and every dog has its limits. Just because he tolerates it fine, doesn’t mean he won’t get fed up and rightfully defend himself one day.
Dogs should not have to tolerate uncomfortable treatment. Children should be taught to respect other creatures and learn that they have feelings too. Expecting a dog to “deal with it” because he is the family dog, is no fair and definitely not realistic. Animals have emotions and will react accordingly.
How can you help your kids get used to dogs?
Involve them in training the family dog
You can always involve your children in the training of your dog. With the right instructor, this is a perfectly safe exercise and also helps to strengthen the bond between the child and the dog.
Below is a picture of a 10-year-old handler at one of the EAKC classes, totally nailing basic obedience training!