My son squeals when he sees a dog and always seems to be fascinated by one. The whole idea of a dog excites him. However many children may not be the same and it is quite natural for children to have such fears against animals. However, a recent study showed that kids who had dogs at their homes showed lower levels of anxiety and had lesser fears than those who did not have a dog at their home.
Children especially between the age of 3- 7, tend to develop various social fears as well as anxieties which could affect their confidence and social behaviour. This behaviour is very common amongst many kids. While dogs or any kind of animal assisted therapy not only affects the mental condition of the child, but it also influences their developmental milestones by lowering the levels of anxiety, separation and other fears. Animals are easy to relate to and offer unconditional love to children especially to an anxious and lonely child. This incredible dog and human bond can not only provide a lot of calmness to the child but can also help in the overall physical as well as the emotional development of the child.
The exact connection between a child's fears and a dog is not clearly understood yet.However, having a dog while your child is growing up can help to improve your child's social behaviour and remove most of their hidden inhibitions, awkwardness and fears.
OVERCOME YOUR CHILD'S FEAR REGARDING DOGS
Help your children overcome their fears regarding dogs as it is very natural to happen.
Here are 6 easy ways:
- Acknowledge your child's fear when they are scared.
- Provide them reassurance and explain to them that you will be right beside them.
- Explain to them exactly what dogs like to do. Show them how you interact with a dog.
- Use neutral questions instead of asking whether this dog will bite or bark.
- An interesting way would be to let your child give some treat or a ball to a familiar dog near your house. This will make them comfortable in the presence of dogs.
- Do not rush into or force your child. If they have fears of your force it may just aggravate. So, go slowly and take puppy steps to help your child overcome their fears.
Bringing home a dog can be quite rejuvenating for both parents as well as kids. This can also help your children in their emotional development.