Having pets when you have young children in the home comes with some added responsibilities. Pets and children can get along well and bring each other a lot of joy if you take certain precautions. The following are some ideas on ways to help your children and pets play well together.
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Have Them Take Classes
Enrolling your dog in obedience classes is one of the best ways to help your entire family get along better. A well-trained dog learns to obey your commands and helps prevent misunderstandings between pet and owner. Older children and teens can benefit from taking the classes with your dog so that they learn the commands and how best to interact with your new pet. According to APDT, training classes have many benefits, and they can begin at any age, whether your new dog is a puppy or a senior.
Teach Your Kids to Respect Animals
Teaching respect for animals is essential in preventing accidents. Even the most mild-mannered dog needs their space at times, especially during feeding. To prevent any issues like dog bites, it’s important that children of all ages know when to leave your pets alone. According to Abels & Annes, these types of injuries can require costly medical attention, surgery, pain medication, and cause scarring and disfigurement. In most cases, the law holds animal owners strictly liable if their pet attacks another person unless the attack was provoked. Keeping close supervision with especially young children and teaching kids of all ages to give your pet space when they need it can help prevent any injuries.
According to One Green Planet, the entire family can benefit from being active together with your dog. The level of activity you choose will depend on your personal preferences and the breed of dog you have. Some dogs need lots of exercise, which can be a great opportunity for your kids to throw a ball or Frisbee for them in the backyard. Taking evening walks as a family can also be a fun way to tire everyone out before bedtime while spending some quality time together.
There are many benefits to having pets in your home, especially if you have children. Not only are you providing a loving home to a pet, but you’re also giving your children an unconditional friend and playmate. Helping your children and pets learn to play well together can help make sure everyone stays happy and healthy during playtime and beyond.