Toddlers and the Family Pet – 5 Animal Safety Tips For Kids

Posted by on Dec 7, 2013 | 1 comment

 

 Your toddler should happily co-exist with the family pet or any other animal they come in contact with. With a lot of patience and persistence, any child can learn safe and fun ways to play and interact with the wild world of animals. Use these 5 tips to make it a very enriching experience and instill good habits that should last a lifetime.

 

Pets and toddlers can be a crazy mix, dangerous even! For most of us, our pets are family. It’s very important that you take measures to teach your little ones to respect animals and how to be safe with them. The following tips by Baby’s Own Room can help show you how.

 

Toddlers and the Family Pet – Animal Safety Tips For Kids

 

  • Demonstrate the proper approach and good handling of a pet. Show your child how to carefully get close to an animal without spooking it. Animals have lightning fast reactions and can very quickly snap or scratch. Emphasize the importance of going slowly and speaking kindly and of being gentle with little creatures.
  • Watch your toddler closely. Be sure little hands don’t squeeze too tightly or that your child doesn’t put their face too close to sharp teeth and claws. Observe all interactions and tell your child when they are doing things right as well as when they’re wrong.
  • Don’t leave the two alone. Even if you trust your pet and think your toddler may be doing just fine, walking away for even a moment can lead to dangerous consequences. Keep a watchful eye on them at all times until your child reaches the stage of development where they are making smart decisions all on their own.
  • Use story telling to teach respect and show examples. Reading stories to your little one will help them to learn how to exercise caution as well as show respect and be caring. Use books with pictures that clearly show the attention one should give to an animal and all the precautions that should be taken. Opt for stories about real-life animals like cats, dogs and hamsters as opposed to ones with made-up creatures.
  • Avoid cartoons, movies or games that depict animal cruelty. We, as adults, have basically become oblivious to the amount of violence and mistreatment of animals in various mediums–but they can have a huge impact on the mind of a child. Make sure your toddler doesn’t see a character dragging a puppy on a leash or bopping him on the head with a book, for example. Since toddlers are prone to imitating, your child may think the actions are harmless and try to duplicate what they see on the screen.

 

Toddlers and the Family Pet - 5 Animal Safety Tips For Kids

 

For the most part, we suggest that you train any animal that will become a part of your family very well. Getting that first puppy is an exciting time. However, much needs to be done in the way of guiding it’s behavior. Take the time to teach a new dog in the house to respect people. This includes not jumping, nipping, or scratching family members or visitors in your home. Teaching your family pet not to abuse inanimate objects may ensure that your child follows suit. Cats may be more independent, but they can also be discouraged from scratching, pouncing and other behaviors in very humane and effective ways.

Your toddler should happily co-exist with the family pet. With a lot of patience and persistence, any child can learn safe and fun ways to play and interact with the wild world of animals. Use the above tips to make it a very enriching experience and instill good habits that should last a lifetime. ~ Baby’s Own Room

 

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One Comment

  1. All very excellent, and important tips! We have two cats and they are great with our kids. Sometimes the kids try to ride the cats like horses, or they chase the cats around the house-but they understand that the kitty’s are very much a part of our family and we need to treat them with love.
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