5 Ground Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

Young kids and toddlers often end up playing too rough with the family dog so it is important to follow these rules for young kids when playing with dogs.

5 Ground Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

Most well-mannered dogs are very patient with young children and they often endure the pain without reacting.

From the parents’ point of view, this is a habit that needs to be controlled at an early age.

Even the most docile pet dogs have their limits and there have been instances of reactionary snaps following a hurtful encounter.

Right from the beginning children need to be encouraged to be respectful and kind to pets.

Many pet parents dismiss the rough play as a passing phase and assume that their kids would change their behavior as they grow older.

However, teaching to be kind to animals and other people is an important life lesson that needs to be imparted at an early age.

5 Ground Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

Whenever you discover our kids intentionally hurting the dog it’s time for you to take action.

Have the talk with your kid about being compassionate to animals.

Maintain an assertive yet kind tone.

To ensure this doesn’t become a habit, ban certain activities.

To help you out, here are 5 ground Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs that you need to enforced.

No Wrestling Moves on the Dog:

Kids often get influenced by wrestling shows and they want to repeat the moves of their favorite stars on the dog.

It’s really not a good idea to try and give your dog a Tombstone or a Piledriver.

Sit down with your children and specifically tell them not to go John Cena on the dog.

This is an activity that needs to be consistently discouraged as it may end up hurting the dog and your child.

As an alternative, you can buy your kids a punching bag or a wrestling pillow.

Yup! That’s a real thing.

Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

No Touching the Tail:

Some kids love to touch and tug on the dog’s tail.

Even when they are doing it gently this is something that should be discouraged consistently.

Dogs are highly sensitive about their tails and thus touching and pulling can cause them to react undesirably.

No Disturbing the Pet When it’s Sleeping or Feeding:

Startling a dog when it’s sleeping or disturbing it when it’s having a meal are two activities that need to be banned with immediate effect.

Feeding time is a vulnerable and personal moment for dogs and they can bite instinctively if disturbed.

Encourage your children to find joy in putting out food for the dog and then giving it some space to enjoy the meal.


Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

No Hugging Too Tightly:

Hugging is a very human action.

Dogs do not like it but they endure it anyways.

While hugging the dog gently is fine, but when it’s too tight you need to intervene.

You know the dog is uncomfortable when their eyes are unusually wide and round.   

 Absolutely No Hitting:

This is a no-brainer, but something that cannot be overlooked.

Hitting the dog in an attempt to “discipline” it is an absolute no no.

Dogs consider children as equals.

Any disciplinary action should come from you because your dog considers you as the pack leader.

Rules for Young Kids When Playing with Dogs

We know now what NOT to do. I think it comes naturally for most of us how to care for your dog; feed your dog healthy high quality food, get lots of fun exercise and when you can walk you dog use a reputable dog walking service and most importantly – give lots of love in the form of play, praise and cuddles. 


Our readers found these articles useful; How to Create a Play Area for Children, Getting Your Children’s First PetFree Kids and Pets eBooks and Plants That are Poisonous to Pets.

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