Sunday, August 15, 2010

No kids to the dog park, PLEASE

Papu is not socialized with kids. We were aware that she should have had some positive experiences with children during her puppyhood, but we didn't really had any kids in our social circle. The only kids we knew were my niece and nephew, so at least it was guaranteed that she would get some kind of experiences with kids. Unfortunately the experience she got was extremely negative. When Papu met my nephew for the first time, he ran after her and made loud noises. It took a while until his mother managed to stop this behavior and by the time my nephew was in control, Papu was already totally apprehensive.

I didn't know back then how much a negative experience can affect the dog when they happen during the puppyhood. Papu still doesn't act well around kids that are in the same age as my nephew and she certainly doesn't tolerate my nephew. I have to keep her on leash when he's around or else she will try to attack him. Too bad that his family doesn't really get this and doesn't bother to inform me when they're going to be around. They just show up and I have to struggle to get everything under control. It really annoys me that their kid did this to Papu and yet they don't do anything to prevent the problems. They let the kid run around before I get a hold on Papu. I think it's only a matter of time when Papu actually bites him and I will not blame Papu when that happens because I have always done my best to keep the two separated.

Anyway. This was just a long prologue for the next story.

It really bothers me when people bring their kids to the dog park. It's not exactly forbidden, but it says in the general dog park rules that "notice that not all dogs are tolerating kids" and in my world that simply means "don't bring your effing kids here". Since Papu is not OK with kids, I can't go to the dog park if there is a kid. And sometimes people don't even realize that it can be a problem! One time I was alone with Papu in the dog park and a family came with a giant Saint Bernard puppy. The father asked if the giant puppy was problem to us. I said "no... but the kid certainly is". He looked surprised.

I also think it's bad parenting to bring kids to dog park. Of course kids need socializing with dogs too, but that's a wrong place. It's never a good idea to surround the kid with strange dogs. Once I didn't notice that there was a kid in the dog park when I went there with Papu because the dog park was so full of big dogs. And the kid ran around, petted every single dog roughly and threw sand on them... And the parents didn't even keep an eye on her! I was mostly shocked by this behavior.

I think all dogs should be welcome to the dog park whether they like kids or not. They are called as "dog parks" for a reason. They are not just fenced parks with "dogs allowed" signs. They are the place for the urban dogs to run freely and socialize with other dogs. Playgrounds are for kids. And since dogs aren't allowed at the playgrounds, kids shouldn't be allowed at the dog parks either. It's only logical and fair, and best for all.

Edit to add: Of course we are training Papu to not react badly when for example a kid walks by, but every time we visit my parents, my nephew does something to harass Papu again and everything starts over. It's hard to convince Papu that kids are not dangerous when she continuously gets bad experiences from them.

And now a cute puppy picture:

1 comment:

  1. It really is infuriating when ppl don't keep their kids in control, esp. when they're causing others problems. How can they be so inconsiderate? I don't get it.

    But Niila looks adorable there.