Dogs have been man’s best friend for countless centuries already, and they will no doubt continue to be man’s best friend for centuries to come. Despite this close bond, sometimes your best friend can become your worst enemy, and the transformation can quite literally happen in the blink of an eye. A prime example of this would be when a dog suddenly attacks a child.
Admittedly, a small poodle or other similar small breed of dog is not capable of seriously mauling a child, but a single minor bite can be extremely traumatic for a small child. With all of that having been said, it is the bigger breeds we need to be most concerned about. Nearly all attacks involving large breeds result in significant injuries, and the sad thing about this is the fact that 99% of the attacks that take place are preventable.
I was brought up believing Dobermans were seriously dangerous dogs; dogs that attack for no reason, and that they were known to attack their owners. Later this killer reputation moved to German Shepherds, then the Rottweiler, and today it is the Pit Bull Terrier.
I have since owned all these breeds apart from a German Shepherd, and all my dogs have been perfectly fine with kids. In fact, my Rottweiler that recently died actually preferred kids to adults. My two kids each went through a stage when they would even climb on her back. They could take food away from her and everything, and there was never any reason to be concerned. All the kids who come around to our home loved her to bits, and she was fantastic with each and every one of them. The reason for this is because I always train my dogs to like kids when they are still puppies.
Training a dog (Take a look at this review if you want to train your dog properly: http://www.pugproblems.com/best/secrets-to-dog-training-review/) to like kids requires more common sense than it does training skills. I don’t mean that in a bad sort of way, but it is true. The best time to start training dogs to like kids is when they are still puppies, preferably below the age of fourteen weeks. They can still easily be trained if they are older than this, but it will require more time and more effort.
The golden rule to remember is that socialization training should be an enjoyable experience for your dog. If you have had a bad day at the office and you are feeling agitated and annoyed, rather postpone the training session. The best way to get your dog to like children involves getting your dog to see children in a positive light. The only way you are going to do that is if you make sure your dog has plenty of opportunities to mingle with kids who are well behaved, and who know how to treat a puppy nicely.
A good starting point would be a play park where there are usually many kids present, and don’t forget to take a load of tasty but nutritious treats along with you. Most kids think puppies are adorable so you’ll almost certainly have a few kids approaching you. Hand out some of the treats to kids who come to look at the puppy, and encourage them to pet the puppy gently while at the same time giving it a few treats.
It’s also a good idea to find a place where there are kids making a lot of noise so that your puppy becomes acquainted with it. Just make sure you keep a watchful eye on the kids because rough and reckless kids will send your puppy the wrong message. I can assure you that if you repeat these steps several times, and you reinforce the training on a regular basis, virtually any breed of dog can grow up to be incredibly affectionate towards children.
Admittedly, some dogs just never take to kids, but even those can be trained to tolerate children, or to simply stay away from children. One final bit of advice: NEVER EVER smack or hit your puppy while you are trying to teach it to like kids.