Teaching Your Kids To Respect The Family Pet

If you’re about to get a family pet, then now’s the time to teach your kids about the rights and wrongs of
handling an animal. They're going to be excited about their new and fluffy friend, and the younger they
are, the more boundless that excitable energy is going to be! And that might result in a few unhappy
tears, when the pet gets overstimulated or wants time of their own, and might just lash out at the person
agitating them.

Pets are living beings with their own likes and dislikes, and it’s important for kids to recognise and
remember that. So, let’s make sure the kids know the boundaries of your new pet, and that they can
clearly define and respect them! It doesn't have to be as hard as it sounds when you keep tips like these
in mind. 

Teach Them What Friendly Looks Like

If your children know what a friendly pet looks like, they’ll know when to interact and when to leave
alone, simple as! For a dog, that’s a relaxed body with a freely wagging tail, and a mouth that’s opening
and panting happily. For a cat, it’s a tail high in the air with a possibly crooked tip, and relaxed trots as
they come towards you. Make sure the kids know what friendliness looks like when it comes to their
behavior too! 

And your time and patience here will go beyond the walls of your own home. Because when you teach
your children how to respect their own pet’s boundaries, you’re going to teach them to respect stray
animals and other pets as well. After all, that behavior will carry over, and make a clear line in the sand
when it comes to basic respect and acceptable social behavior. It might just keep a potential need for a
dog bite lawyer down as well, which is definitely something to keep in mind. 

Ask Them How They’d Feel

Respect comes from being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes, and it’s something kids are
taught from a young age. Apply it to your pet as well - it works wonders, especially if the child you’re
teaching has siblings! After all, a younger brother or an older sister probably annoys them from time to
time, and that’s definitely an experience you can put to good use during this lesson. 

So, if a dog is getting grumpy because it is trying to sleep, and your kids won’t stop petting it or trying to
get it to play, pull them aside and ask them how they would feel if someone was disturbing them. Seeing
as children can get very cranky when they’re tired, it’s definitely a very good point to make! 

Teaching your kids to respect the pet you’ve just brought into the house can be quick and painless. Pets
can be lovely around kids, and there’s a lot of love and memories to make, but only if that initial respect
is set up from the beginning.

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