Puppies and toddlers

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Member Since
Barked: Wed Apr 25, '12 1:59pm PST 
We have a 3 year old boy and a 4 month old Aussie. I can pretty well teach the puppy not to bite me, but training him not to bite(playfully) my son seems nearly impossible. My son doesn't understand. He just wants to play with our puppy no matter how many times he is bitten. Any tips?

The Monster
Barked: Sun Apr 29, '12 5:23am PST 
While I know it's hard and kind of counterintuitive, I would not encourage your puppy and your child to interact. Accidents happen, and when you're talking about your family pet and your child, the stakes are too high to risk something bad happening.

This is a great blog that talks about how to encourage your kids to not be "magnetized" to your dog, and it encourages you to give your dog lots of space and things to do away from the child.


It's a bit different since you have a pup who's actively looking to interact with your child, but I would keep the two separate until the pup calms down a bit, loses its puppy teeth and learns through interaction with you that people are not chew toys.

Play hard, sleep- well.
Barked: Sun Nov 11, '12 12:06pm PST 
If you do not want your son to get bitten, do NOT let them interact. A puppy and a young child are a horrible match. Many breeds, especially Aussies, have a strong instinct to herd and may be nippy. You should have done your research. You are an irresponsible dog owner. I suggest that you rehome the dog. The dog will be much happier. Experts recommend that you should not get a puppy when your child is young. Young children tend to be grabby with dogs and cats and want to grab animals all the time. If your son were to drop the puppy the dog could be SERIOUSLY injured or even killed. That could cost over $1000 if this were to happen. Puppies and small dogs have very fragile bones. When your puppy is older, he may try to herd your son. That may scare him. For your puppy's safety please rehome your dog. Your situation is just too dangerous for your son and the puppy.
Sources: Previous Aussie owner and trainer and my common sense.