Your child loves dogs, but sometimes you worry that he may play with neighborhood dogs a bit too roughly. You want to prevent a dog bite, but maybe you do not know the proper teaching methods.
The American Veterinary Medical Association offers tips for keeping young kids safe from dog bites. Ensure that your son knows how to respect dogs and keep himself safe.
Ask owners for permission
Impart the importance of always asking a dog’s owner before petting a dog. Even if your son met the dog already, or if the same dog had a gentle and friendly demeanor before, it is still good to ask for permission.
Steer clear of new dogs
No matter how excited kids become upon seeing a new dog, they should never approach it alone. Children should learn that rather than attempt to befriend stray or loose dogs, they should call animal control to let them handle the situation.
Remain calm around aggressive dogs
Kids must know how to respond to visibly aggressive dogs. They should remain still with their hands loose at their sides and their eyes pointed down at the ground to avoid making eye contact with the aggressive dog. If a dog pushes your son to the ground, instruct him to draw himself into a ball and protect his neck and head with his arms.
Let sleeping dogs be
A dog’s crate or bed represents a personal sanctuary. Stress the importance of leaving a dog alone when it goes to bed. If you have a family dog, situate its bed in a room that you and your family frequent.
Hopefully, your son has nothing but treasured encounters with dogs. Teach him how to keep himself safe and dogs happy.