It’s one of those obscure holidays yet it does make a lot of sense. Today, April 26th, is National Kids and Pets Day!
Now, isn’t that what concerns us the most when we’re introducing a new pet into a home or when we have a pet and our introducing a new baby?
Here are some helpful hints from Chris Hayden, a veterinarian technician with PetFirst Healthcare. The full article is availablehere.
Teach children to approach animals slowly and to not reach for the animal’s head. Start petting the back first and avoid the ‘belly’ area until you know a little bit more about the animal.
Watch toddlers, who can step on tails, pull and tug on ears – we have the words to tell them to stop doing that to us. Your dog only has his back and little nips to let your toddler know he’s being hurt or to not touch him there.
Avoid giving your dog toy’s that look like baby’s toys or clothing.
Let older children assist with pet care. It’s wonderful to see them bond and understand the responsibility of caring for another.
Be sure your child(ren) knows to leave the dog food, treats and water alone (unless their helping with the care and feeding of your pet).
Any other helpful hints you would like to share to celebrate ‘the day’?
Children can be great fun for your new puppy, especially if they love to play. But besides having fun with your new pet, it’s also important that you teach your child to be responsible and help to care for your pooch. Here are a few dog rules to teach them. Not only will these rules make it easier for your family to adapt to and care for your new puppy, but it can also help your puppy feel like a welcome addition to the family.
Teach your children early on that the puppy needs to be fed and given fresh water each day. Also explain how puppies need special food to grow big and strong and how certain foods, like people food, can actually be bad for the puppy and that the child should stick to only the puppy’s food during feeding time.
Young children have a tendency to try to be rough with animals, so educate them on how to be nice and play well with your puppy without hurting him.
Show your child the importance of exercise by encouraging healthy and active play with the puppy (under parental supervision, of course).
Remind your child that little pups love to chew and need to be given special toys. Not to mention, tell your child to keep things like toys and shoes away from the puppy in case they get gnawed at.
Keep a schedule of bathroom breaks for your dog. Remind your child that if the new dog doesn’t keep to the scheduled potty breaks that he may find a place in the house. Be sure that you’re sticking to the schedule at all times!