Children and pets are a wonderful mix as long as your child is taught to respect animals. Many families are getting new pets, but if you are new to owning a dog, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Puppies are a delight, but they have tiny sharp teeth! If your preschooler or other family members are rough housing with your puppy that revelation will happen early on. It’s important to enjoy playing with your puppy without getting too crazy. Remember, your puppy is learning how to play with your child. If it’s used to rough play as a puppy, it will expect to play in a similar way as it grows. Depending on the size of your grown dog, that can be an issue.
If your new pet is a rescue, that’s truly wonderful. Just remember your dog had a life before you and it may take some time to learn your new pet's likes and dislikes. There may be some odd things that your new pet finds scary. It’s important to teach your young child to be slow, gentle, and cautious – especially around your dog’s head.
The joys, cuddling, and walks are all worth the effort! Here are a few resources if you have or are planning on bringing a new pet into your young family…
How to Train a New Puppy to get along with Kids
Introducing a Rescue Dog