Children and pets

I have worked with alot of children and their dogs. Most of the time working with the kids on the sidelines with Mom and Dad being the main caregivers. But several times the parents have taken a step back and left me to work with their child and dog alone. Feeling that the child wanted the dog and the child will be caring for the dog; hey I may as well teach the child.

A couple of times it has not been a good idea. Once the child was too young; another time the child was a "no it all" and wouldn't listen to a word I said which left me no alternative but to discuss it with the parent. And one situation was a little out of the childs reach, the dog was overly dominant. I do believe that children should learn all about their pets; whether it be a dog, cat or hamster.

We don't just know how to deal with animals and as humans we make a whole lot of mistakes. So I was thinking that a "pet" class in school would be very worth while. Why not teach our children about animals and how to treat them. There could be classes on all sorts of pets, with general care and behavior on all. It would be a great chance to teach children about kindness and empathy towards animals.

Studies have shown that children who regularly interact with animals have a higher levels of self esteem, greater empathy, and better social skills. Many adults haven't a clue how to raise a dog; yet for some reason we all feel like "we can do it, it's just a dog." Imagine if we all learned the basics; how great for both humans and animals alike.

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