A lot of little kids love having a pet dog. But, for some, it doesn’t feel natural, and they may feel afraid of a large furry animal in their living space. If your child is afraid of a new puppy you’ve brought home or a dog you’ve adopted, you don’t have to worry about sending the dog back. Instead, you can take some helpful steps to get your child acquainted with your pet, and hopefully forge a bond that will last for years to come. Here are some of the easiest steps to take ensure your kids aren’t scared of your pup.
Only Communicate Positive Things About Dogs
Watch what you say about dogs, too. Kids pick up cues from adults, and if you mention being afraid of, intimidated by or feeling negatively about dogs, that will stick with them. Try to speak only positively about your dog to encourage your child to want to bond with him.
Read Happy Books and Watch Happy Movies About Dogs
Kids learn a lot from books and movies. Gather a collection of books and movies about pets that are happy and positive, then spend time looking and watching those. Kids can see other kids interacting happily with their animals, and they’ll be more encouraged to do the same.
Don’t Force Interactions
If your child isn’t ready to interact with a dog, don’t force him or her. This can feel traumatic and only make the fear worse. Instead of forcing interactions, ask your child if he or she is ready, and wait until they say they are before introducing them to the dog.
Consult Your Vet
Your vet is the expert when it comes to dog health and behavior. When you go for your next appointment (for preventative treatments for ticks and fleas or regular medicine like Vetmedin, which treats heart failure) talk to your vet about the best ways to introduce kids to dogs, and how you can ensure your dog is sweet, calm and friendly around your kids. Your vet can give you insight into the best way to get them acquainted with one another.
Buy a Stuffed Dog
Find a stuffed dog that looks like your pet dog. Have your child cuddle with and spend time with the stuffed animal. This can help foster more ease when spending time with the animal in real life.
Create Safe Spaces in the House
Create spaces within your house where the dog can go and where the dog can’t go. Then, make sure your child knows the safe spots and the spots where the dog is. This will give them some time and freedom to interact with the dog at their own pace, and they won’t be surprised by any interactions or discovering their dog in a spot that they weren’t expecting him to be.
Having kids and a dog at the same time is a great way to create amazing bonds and to teach kids responsibility. However, it’s important to make sure your kid is comfortable around the dog in order to make sure everyone is safe, healthy and happy. By taking some key steps to introduce the two and get them used to each other, you can foster a great relationship and make sure everyone at home is getting the most from the experience of having a pet.
Lannie, writer for Allivet. Allivet provides affordable pet supplies and pet medications, all of which can be purchased online. Listed below are some helpful resources referenced in the article that can provide some guidance for those looking for helpful information on pet supplies & medication: http://www.allivet.com/p-2500-vetmedin.aspx