Pets and kids are a cute combination, but safety should always come first!
By the age of 12, half of the children in the United States have been bitten by a dog, and research shows that kids are most often bitten by a dog they know. Any pet can bite, so all pets need to be treated with respect and kindness. Understanding how pets communicate and knowing how and when to interact with them will help keep both kids and pets safe!
Help prevent bites before they happen!
- Learn and pay attention to what pets are communicating. Subtle stress signals are often ignored and can result in bites. Just because it seems like a pet is tolerating a behavior, it doesn’t mean they’re comfortable.
- Actively supervise all interactions between kids and pets.
- Advocate for your pet and their well-being. Don't allow your pet to experience unwanted interactions with children.
- Teach your child appropriate and respectful behavior around pets
Check out the resources below to learn how to keep interactions fun and safe for both children and pets!
Pet Activity Sheets
Don't Pet a Dog Who (English)
How to Meet a Dog: WAIT (English)
- The Family Dog
- Stop the 77 - The Family Dog
- Doggie Drawings: Infographics
- Dog Bite Prevention Program: SAFE - Free materials for kids
- Resources – Lakes Animal Friendship Society
- Dog Bite Safety Education | The DogSmith
- Be A Tree Program (doggonesafe.com)
- Children & Dogs - How They Can Live Together | RSPCA
- Dog Aware Body Language - Family Paws Parent Education
- Zocdoc - How to Teach Your Kid About Animal Safety