Dogs And Children



Dogs And Children by Roger Abrantes


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Dogs And Children by Roger Abrantes


This is the book all parents and dog owners should read. It’s so easy to prevent problems between children and dogs and so difficult to solve them.


Dogs and children
Choice of dog
Safety rules for babies born into a home with a dog
Teaching the child
Teaching your dog
Prevention is better than cure
The first conflicts
Rules and feeling safe
Children and other animals


“Humans and dogs are social mammals, which means they share some common attributes. Both use similar patterns of behavior to express their emotions, moods and intentions, so it is not difficult to understand why humans and dogs get along so well. If we look at how puppies develop and acquire their own dog language, and we compare it to the way children develop and learn to master their facial expressions, body postures and language, we can indeed see some striking similarities. The problems that may arise between children and dogs are due, perhaps indirectly, to those very same similarities as they detract from the fact that, whilst being alike in so many ways, they are radically different in many others. To compare a child with a dog is only viable to a limited extent. To state that a dog is like a child and to treat it like one is a serious mistake, as serious as to assume that a child is a “little adult.”

We receive, unfortunately far too often, calls from deeply upset parents and dog owners who have reached the extreme situation of their dog biting their child. These are tragic cases, which seldom have a happy ending, with the parents/owners asking, “Shall we euthanize or re-home the dog?” I will explain the main reasons for conflict between dogs and children, but we must first agree that when it goes wrong, it is always the responsibility of the adults (who have a dual role of both parent and dog owner). We cannot hold a child or a dog responsible for their behavior. When things go wrong, we, the adults, must assume responsibility: we were simply not good enough at explaining to the child and to the dog how they should interact.”

~Roger Abrantes

Ethology Institute