Expert Tips for Introducing Dogs and Kids

Who doesn’t love dogs? They are cute, bundles of fun. Here’s how to introduce dogs and kids.

But, always remember they can bite, particularly if they are nervous or scared.

So when you go to say hello to a dog, they need to be happy and confident around you. If they feel threatened or scared, they may try to bite. Here are some tips on how to act and behave around dogs, to ensure they are happy and confident around you, and to ensure that you remain safe and don’t get bitten.

1. Never say hello to a dog without checking with their owner
Most dogs wouldn’t hurt a fly, but some can bite. So you need to make sure that their owners are happy for you to say hello to their dog.

2. Let the dog smell you
The safest way for you to say hello to a dog, is to let the dog sniff the back of your hand. Don’t jam it under their nose, but let them approach you and have a sniff. This gives the dog a chance to get to know you and your kids a bit better.

3. Pat their shoulder or chest, not their head
Dogs love a good pat, but don’t like being patted on the head. So gently give them a pat on the shoulder or their chest, rather than on the head or near the face.

4. Never try to kiss a dog, or put your face near their face
Doing this is very dangerous for you. The dog may simply get surprised or accidently hurt you.

5. Never scream or make loud noises around dogs
Don’t shout or yell around dogs. This might scare them, and if they are scared we already know they are more likely to bite.

6. Don’t chase dogs
Dog’s don’t like to be chased, and it might make them scared and more likely to bite.

7. Never say hello to a dog who is eating
Just as we get protective over the chocolate we get at Christmas, dogs can get protective and might think that you are trying to take their food. So, if they are eating, leave them alone.

8. Listen for growls
If a dog is growling, or his ears are pinned back, he might be angry, and may bite. If this is the case, leave them alone.

If you are playing with a dog, and he starts to do this, don’t run away, don’t chase him, just stand like a tree, and look at your feet. Then slowly walk away.

Dogs are lots of fun, and you shouldn’t be scared of them. But, they are animals and can bite, so you need to be careful with how you act around them.


Originally posted on our sister site

Avatar of Dr Ben Willcocks

Dr Ben Willcocks is a registered Veterinarian in NSW. He has worked extensively in companion animal medicine, and has a strong interest in stem cell therapy and surgery. He has also worked as a large animal vet, and has an interest in education, having taught veterinary students at the University of Qld. Ben works closely alongside Nick in the running of the pet health website,

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