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28

Actually, most studies show the opposite - that having a pet is good for children's health. Specifically, kids exposed to animals when young have a lower risk for developing pet related allergies later in life, and pets in general have been shown to lower stress levels. There are a few diseases that can be passed from a cat to a child, but for a cat who is ...


21

14 months is pretty young to learn to be truly nice to another - he almost certainly has very little empathy at this point. He's not trying to hurt the dog; he's pushing a button that makes a bell ring, basically: cause, effect, nothing more. The fact that the dog doesn't react much is a good thing - it makes it likely to be a shorter phase, rather than if ...


16

Any breed of dog can be perfectly safe or extremely dangerous. You have to test out the dog for aggressive behavior and educate your toddler on appropriate dog handling. For example, I stress to my kids that they should not bother the dog while she's eating. At the same time, our dog doesn't have any food issues -- they can stick their hands in her dish ...


12

I would definitely tell him in advance, to give him a chance to process the fact in time, and to say goodbye to the cat. Morah made a good point about leaving the sickness out of the explanation, that may be one strategy. However, my feeling is that telling that the cat just died, without any clear reason, may be equally frightening for the kid if he has a ...


10

I think just like you teach your dogs to play nice with other dogs or kids. I don't really see any other thing than just the generic methodology. Maybe you can spend some time with your child and the animals to show how it should be done. If he/she already knows how it 'should be done' and is testing limits, be very clear about what is and what is not nice ...


10

My daughter was the same way with her kitten when we first got it (no mouring issues at the same time). Rather than thinking it was about her considering the cat her toy, it was more like an over-exuberance of love for the cat and wanting to have it near all the time. We spoke with her about how true love is shown with respect for the needs and wishes of ...


8

Not entirely on topic but still relevant. My wife contracted Toxoplasmosis while she was pregnant with our 3rd child. It all ended well but it was one heck of a cliffhanger and could easily have resulted in our daughter being severely handicapped or dead. We have no idea how my wife contracted it. So a few pointers may be helpful for others: Get yourself ...


7

Monica Cellio's answer already mentions recommendations if you own a cat and most of all that you're much more likely to contract toxoplasmosis through undercooked meat (most of the contamination cases) and gardening — you may add insufficiently washed legums and fruits. There are much more informations on the CDC website. I feel it's also important to ...


6

Balanced Mama! There are lots of ways to make sure your kids and your dog are safe from one another. A lot of websites and books exhort you to "always watch your dog and child together," but they don't always tell you what to look for. You want to watch for your dog's very first signs of discomfort, and depending on your dog, these can be very subtle: ...


6

What is your lifestyle like and how will your pet fit into it? Some pets require lots of daily exercise and attention, others are more low-maintenance. Some are cuddly, some want to do their own thing. Some require training, others don't. Some pets are great companions on outings, others are better left at home. The biggest factor in finding the right ...


6

Ok, I'm going to channel Cesar Millan here, bigtime. It would be quite natural for the dogs to see the baby as a pup. Consequence of which is that the baby will have a lower ranking in your pack. The pack is basically what you call family, i.e. you, your partner, any other humans living in your house and any dogs. So it is important that your dogs ...


6

Many. But which exactly greatly depends on your child and his experiences so far. Some suggestions: Death is final Really. If you are four you haven't necessarily made that experience yet. Families are smaller and live apart, neighbourhoods less connected than a few generations ago. First-hand experience with death is rare even for adults. Death is ...


5

The tried and tested method that seems to have been the standard amongst all my friends when they were kids is that the pet has gone to a farm out in the country where they have a great time chasing animals etc. This is all very well, and simple when the child is young, but once they get up to 7 or 8, I am of the opinion that it is better to start being ...


5

There is something that a teacher told me regarding the interaction between our toddler (3) and our infant (1 year). When the toddler does something to his baby sister that is not terrible but just not nice (like taking away a toy she is holding) you should talk to the toddler about how he hurt the offend-ed's feelings. Since the baby (and in your case ...


4

My dog is a lab/chow mix, and is absolutely fantastic with children. The only time he's snapped at (and didn't actually connect with) either child is when my son was bending his (the dogs) penis into a pretzel shape. My response was, of course, "Don't do that to the dog." But a lot of that could be training, because from a very young age I've had the dog ...


4

We researched this very carefully having had a border collie prior to having children. While our collie was a lovely dog we were absolutely certain it was not a good breed to combine with small children. Instead we acquired a Large Munsterlander and she has proved a very safe and reliable type, very tolerant of infant roughness and wholly unaggressive.


4

Our kids were born with cats already in the house, which has made it straightforward for us, but what we did was: let them cuddle the cats from a very early age - 6 or 7 months start to let them put out a food or water bowl (from 2 or 3 years old) brushing the cat's fur from about 3 years old with supervision (just so they weren't too rough) let the cat in ...


4

I guess it depends on the type of animal and the child's age. First determine what kind of involvement you would expect from the child: feed the pet daily? Clean the litter? Walk the animal? And then try to give the child a responsibility with the same type of involvement. For example, if you expect the child to feed the animal daily, then have the child ...


4

Short Version: It isn't necessary to get rid of your pets as a precaution. If you find after your baby is born that it is a problem, you can consider isolating or even removing them. In terms of allergies, there are two different main allergens referenced in your question: dust and pet hair (more specifically, pet dander, which is a combination of hair and ...


4

Your son wasn't as connected to the fish (who he couldn't touch) as he would be a puppy (who would have personality and follow your son around), so it's not surprising that he isn't upset. I would use this as a moment to teach the following: Small animals are delicate and have shorter life spans than dogs or humans. It's natural and no ones fault when ...


4

Toxoplasmosis parasites. The kids could get the same from playing in the garden though. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/toxoplasmosis/basics/prevention/con-20025859


4

I was horse crazy since I was old enough to read books about horses. Any child is old enough to ride (I got my own horse when I was sixteen, and taught my four year old sister to ride on my horse, my kids learned to ride when they were seven and eight) but in order to be old enough to be the primary caregiver for a horse a child must have a strong sense of ...


4

When our cat became sick, we simply explained everything to our kids as it happened. We explained that while some treatments could extend the cat's life, nothing would ultimately work and meanwhile the cat would be in a pretty miserable condition. We explained what euthanasia was, and when it could be used - for instance only for very sick animals, but not ...


3

Rory's answer is a wonderful one in its acknowledgement of different age levels and that coming to terms with the death of a pet can actually help later with other deaths that will eventually be encountered, but I disagree with the beginning premise that it is ever okay to lie about it. A child will figure out your lie eventually and they can feel the pain ...


3

Speaking as a parent with a dog, three cats, some fish and snails, and a 5-yr-old and a 34-month-old, time will be your best friend here. For our kids, we focus more on treating the animals gently (no chasing the cats, no pulling the dog's ears, remember the pet is a living creature, etc) and less on caring for the pets. Your best bet is to model the ...


3

The wagandco.com website offers a rating for child friendliness for each breed. It might help. Example:


3

My dog was technically still a puppy when we had our son, he was 10 months old, but I made sure before baby came that he was familiar with his room and his stuff, he is a hound so sniffing is what he lives for, so we let him sniff everything. Since I was the one with him all day, I was also worried that he may react to not see me for a couple of days, so ...


3

Any dog can be dangerous if the training isn't good. Whether a dog is bred to be aggressive or not is of secondary relevance to me than whether the dog has had proper discipline that establishes you and your family members as alpha over the dog. If you're going to get a big, powerful breed without recognizing the potential for aggression, and therefore don't ...


2

It's not about the breed; it's about the owner. My husband grew up with pitbulls and was very rough and tumble with them. I cringe listening to the potential disasters that never happened. Conversely, people get bitten by labs too. I recommend you choose a dog that suits your lifestyle. Then, learn how to be good owners and teach your children how to be ...



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