joi, 2 august 2007

Dogs & children

Living with a dog can be beneficial to children. Dogs can enhance children’s self-esteem, teach them responsibility and help them to learn empathy. However, children and dogs may not always automatically start off with a wonderful relationship. Parents must be willing to teach the dog and the child acceptable limits of behavior in order to make their interactions pleasant and safe.
Many people have a warm and fuzzy image of a puppy and a child growing up together. If you have a young child and are thinking of adopting a puppy (less than 1 year old), there are a few things you need to consider. Puppies require a lot of time, patience, training and supervision. They also require socialization in order to become well-adjusted adult dogs. This means they need to be taken places and exposed to new things and new people. If you have a young child who already requires a lot of care and time, you should ask yourself if you will you have enough time to care for a puppy as well. Puppies, because they’re babies, are fragile creatures. A puppy may become frightened, or even injured, by a well-meaning, curious child who wants to constantly pick him up, hug him or explore his body by pulling on his tail or ears.
Remember, children should never be left alone with a dog or puppy without adult supervision.
Dogs must know and respect the home's hierarchy (like in a pack). First are the parents, then the children and finally the dog.

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