Dogs

Victoria’s Child Safety Guide It’s Me or the Dog

posted: 05/15/12
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1. Never touch a dog that is unknown to you.

2. Even if you know the dog, always ask permission to pet it from the owner first.

3. Even when you have permission, don't invade the dog's body space. Allow the dog to come up to you and sniff the top of your closed fist (palm down). If the dog doesn't want to come and greet you, respect that and leave it alone. Don't approach a dog from behind. Don't pet a dog directly on the top of its head. This could be threatening for the dog because the top of its head can be very sensitive, so it is best to pet on the back or chest.

4. Never stare at a dog and never put your face close to a dog's face. Remember to look at the dog briefly and then look away, lookat the dog, and look away. These are calming signals and you are telling the dog that you are no threat.

5. Do not tease a dog.

6. Do not touch a dog that has been tied up or left at the end of a chain in a yard, outside a store or behind a fence.

7. Tell an adult immediately if you see a dog that is loose in your neighborhood. Do not touch it.

8. Do not touch a dog while it is eating. You wouldn't want a dog to come and take what you are eating, so respect that its food is its food and you should not go near it.

9. Do not touch a dog while it is sleeping. You might startle it and it could react without thinking and snap at you.

10. Do not take a bone or toy away from a dog if it is playing with it.

11. Do not push a dog off the sofa or chair if you want to sit there. Always get an adult to remove the dog for you.

12. Don't scream and run away from a dog. If a strange dog comes up to you and you are scared, fold your arms, stand still, look away, and completely ignore it until it loses interest in you and goes away. The more boring you can be the less the dog will want to interact with you. If you can, walk slowly away with folded arms.

13. If the dog tries to bite you, put a bag or coat between you and the dog and back away to a safe place.

14. In the unlikely event a dog starts to bite, get onto the floor, roll up into a ball with your arms around your head, and stay as still as you can until help arrives.

15. Remember that a dog is an animal and not a cuddly toy. Some dogs don't like being hugged. Be gentle with any dog and do not engage in rough play.

Seems like a lot of dos and don'ts but it is very important. If you print out the safety guide and put it up where you can see it, the tips will be easier to remember.

For more information about Victoria's seminars for kids and dog safety, please visit Victoria's official site at www.victoriastilwell.com.

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It's Me or the Dog