By Charlene Little, Contributing Writer
It is never too early to teach your children to respect animals. From the time they are able to move their hands toward a desired location, you can begin. Teaching your children to be easy with animals and to not pull their hair, tails, and ears is very important. Pets deserve respect, and do not deserve pain. Setting a positive example for your children, you can teach them how to properly touch your pets and help them build compassion.
When your child is only a few months old you can begin the journey of teaching them a positive relationship with pets. Gently rubbing your pet's head and telling them to "be easy with the puppy" is the first step. Your child will see how you treat the animal, and will see the positive interaction. I have already began this journey with my four-month old son.
Everyday I sit with him on my lap, and one of our pets next to me. I show him the way he should pet the kitty. Even though he is only four months old, he is able to gently touch the kitty instead of hit him like most babies do. Starting the journey of interacting with pets early will prevent having to go back to stop negative behaviors. It will also build trust between your child and your pet early on.
Remember to never leave a pet alone with a child who does not know how to positively interact with a pet
About the Author
Charlene Little is the mother of three wonderful boys and a volunteer foster mom for her local animal shelter. She enjoys working with various breeds of dogs and cats in learning social behavior, training, and how to be the successful member of a fur-ever family. She enjoys studying animals' behavior and finding solutions to behavior problems that the everyday person can handle. She covers topics from various forms of aggression and small problem behaviors. Every problem behavior has a solution, and the solution is never to give up on your pet! Love, kindness, and small adjustments could be just what you need.
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