By Kelly Marshall
If you have decided to add a dog or puppy to your family, it is important to realize that children do not know instinctively how to bond with the new dog.
Therefore, you will need to help the bonding process and make sure both the puppy and the child are safe.
People have unique temperaments and personalities, so do canines, and some canines are naturally more patient with children than others.
Make sure your child or toddler knows and understands that when the dog is eating, they must never approach the dog. Some dogs are very territorial when it comes to their food bowls and having a small toddler begin taking some of the dog’s food poses a danger with even the most even-tempered dog. Food time needs to be taught to your child that the dog should be left alone.
In addition, approaching a pup that is sound asleep by picking the dog up can cause snapping. Therefore, it is important that your child understands not to pick the canine up or approach the dog when she’s sleeping.
You also should always monitor interactions between toddlers and children. Because toddlers can be unpredictable – jerky movements, occasional shrieking – their actions can startle or frighten your dog.
It may seem instinctive, but you need to teach your child or toddler how to pet a dog. Show the child how to pet the dog gently and do not allow the child to pick up the dog or pull the dog’s tail or ears.
You should also teach your child how to speak to the canine by approaching the pup using a gentle tone.
Toddlers and young children mimic your behavior, so if you are talking to the dog in a happy and calm tone, your child will imitate you.
Any interactions with a toddler or young child and a dog always need to be supervised because this is the best time to teach the child how to pet the dog, approach the dog, play with the dog, and bond with the new dog.
With a little time and effort, your child and dog will form a bond that will last for years to come.
Kelly Marshall is a featured author on Oh My Dog Supplies. For more articles by Kelly visit Oh My Dog Supplies.