Dogs and children’s, children’s and dog


Just please read it whole til  the end before any portion of this will make You angry, you as a  parent … or as dog owner  (do not mention “breeders”, most of them are a lost cause, mostly interested in selling dogs , in case – how many of You have heard the story of hypoallergenic dogs ? taka a look here). It will take only ten minutes of reading but it that can help you in the next approx. thirteen years with a dog – good deal I guess.

We have such a perspective in that we have dogs and we are parents of a small child who suddenly appeared in the house which had so far been populated by three dogs, which in fact…. are also our children. It just happens, there is no way one can explain to the dogs, a tiny human is arriving. But is it a human? Humans are big and walk on their feet, this one is small,  pink and does nothing else but lay. This is something different – the dog thinks…because dogs think differently than we do. Of course you can bring there a new fragrance together with things from the hospital, anyway quadrupeds will feel a change coming, they see mom’s belly and more and more strange new things – it is time to prepare the dog. But it is still something new and stressful … and when my mom will come back nervoused and tired …. and nothing is like it used to be, I barked with joy as usual and they shouted at me … what is going on?

Agreement between the dog and the child must be bilateral, and both sides need to know where the limits are so everyone will enjoy life under one roof. The determination of these principles and overwatch  is up to You – not an easy task especially that children and dogs communicate in a different language and have different needs. If something happens, joint meeting won’t work, at least one party will never tell you what happened. And as we look at it,  children more often cross borders than dogs … and we punish the latter. Because the baby is crying and has such sweet little angel eyes. A dog face is the same as always, does not show any remorse, the ulgy dog  does not seem to understand what is said to him (might be the case that the dog may just know Mandarinian while the owner speaks French?). But for good note, we will tell you that an aware kid – can make a much stronger bond with the dog than adults, because adults can … .tell lies, say something different than our body language indicates, we say to the dog that it is ok, nothing happened, while we are tense, we breathe faster and  talk louder – we send mixed signals. Kids do not have them, their body language plays together with what they say … .and dogs appreciate it … .You think that it takes magic to watch  over 11 puppies and mom ? We have seen how our herd was running after and obeying commands of a little six-year old …. It can be done.

„Does this dog bite?”

Never, teeth are just for decoration.


“Does this dog bark, because the child []?

Never, as it is joyful or warning it starts to sing “Stairway to heaven”


Yes, dogs bite…

So dogs bite – not just when they eat – sometimes they bite by accident with no bad toughts in mind . Sometimes they bite, because their mind runs out of other options and the bite is last line of defence.

Because his (dogs) favourite ball, the one that he and only he always retrieves and no one else  plays with it, happens to be in the hands of a man and in the middle of fun he tried to pull it from his hand, dog bit – he did not want to, but he did . He bites. A child is crying. Bad Dog.

Because the dog had a bad day, not feeling well (painful tooth or simply just one of those days, or is already old) do not want to play, after all, he has feelings and is not eternally cheerful toy with wagging tail, stepped aside to the space where no one ever bothers him (open frame, covered with a sheet in the farthest, quietest place in the house – not den in the living room with the TV or in hallway) to fell asleep. Or it is a puppy that sleeps 18 hours a day and just finished his two hours of activity. And as the dog slept, baby  walked half the house and having just wanted to play with the dog fall over on his stomach. The dog got scared and with virtually unconditional reflex bit blind (eyes not even had time to adapt to light) –  (and you as if you were sleeping, how would You react on one punch in the stomach in your bedroom? – With a smile on Your face?). He bites. A child is crying. Bad Dog.

Because the baby just wanted to say hello and hug the dog. And the dog got so nervous, what is wrong with him?

Because the dog was lying quietly on the floor while little angel did his experiments, once again dog was pulled by the hair on the ear or accidentally kid stuck his finger in the dog’s eye. Or he sat on the dog – parents taught him when he weighed 5 kg and now he weighs 20 kg. Battered dog after 10 minutes of sending calming signals – this is his language,   nobody taught the kid this way of communication with the dog? (Not to mention behavior with  respect ) – interestingly – we demand from the dog,  to understand everything we say – including speeches of sizes resembling government expose. And if the child is still too small, did someone see these signals ? (The dog previously looked for help from his adult friend, and nothing – the rules have changed recently,  dog did not know) finally snapped and jerked. How could he, bad dog, the child fell over and is crying.

Because the dog was hungry, and the child just had in his hand  a tasty sausage and with intention or not, started to tease the dog. And sausage started to fly in front of the dog’s nose dog (just like owner sometimes plays with me in “sit down game”). The dog sat down and picked up the sausage from kids hand. He bit lightly, did not want to. Bad Dog. This is child’s sausage , not your You little rascal, you’re not allowed to eat his food (even though – yesterday in the same situation when the dog ate the sausage, everyone cheered) … .but my dear doggie for balance remember when you eat from your owns bowl, your food, which no one else in this house eats, for 3 minutes, then you have to be as stoic, whether someone  bothers you, puts his hands into the bowl, or moves and takes everything away. You did growl? , well, you’re a bad dog.

Well, is this dog suitable for children? This poor fellow above, is already at the point where the sight of the child causes him to panic – no wonder, the dog also has its own logic, whenever tiny humans approach – I have problems, so do not get near me – I bark, growl and warn. And all because, although it is not nice, the question of whether the dog is suitable for the child should be answered with the question, whether the child (and you) is suitable for dog ?.

And sometimes  dog just bites / growls / escapes / does not tolerate children – because he happens to be such a dog – more nervous or poorly socialized (rightly said = poorly matched to your family), just can’t stand children – the amount of incentives is too much –  but at least he has such a  nice color and shape of the tie is also beautiful – You’d chosen him in the end? It takes many hours for professionals to understand the nature of shaped adult dog, and you just analysed the nature of the puppy on the first sight, after one visit or on the photographs? Puppy, whose whole behaviour  was seen in the most comfortable conditions – in his own home with his own families. Well, yes but what do You say now, after all, the standard says that …….

The standard says……

roughly speaking, the paper will take anything. Standard is a blueprint of an ideal representative of the breed (and one does not exist). Perfect, not any given dog. One will be smaller (other than standard), the second will have a bad angulation (other than standard) and the third will not be sociable …. (other than standard). The fact that the Poles are considered as hospitable nation, does not mean that each of us greets visitors  with smile. We are different … .and the dogs also are different, they have their characters (congenital), but also their experiences. You’re picking a dog – not breed and You should not do it just because 100 years ago, someone wrote in standard that dog is cheerful and friendly.

barbet-Dogs and children's, children's and dog 1Does he bark?

Sure, he barks. The dog barks, purrs, growls, squeaks and barks even sneezes … for many reasons, sometimes because it warns, barks because he is in a joyful mood- he sees his favourite ball.

It will be fine

And finally heads up – because you have doubts it means for us that the  you will do good. The more of these doubts and questions, the more we know it will work.

We also make mistakes (although I reserve that no one here have ever been bitten), we are not always as consistent as we would like. And yet we will make these mistakes more than once. For a child you are determinant to what can and what can not be done, he looks at you and learns from your behaviour, teach them respect and devotion. Dog expects the same, show him what he can do and what should not (as is the problem with sausages, do not allow him to sit in kitchen while eating). Teach him that the child is not a partner for fun to which he is accustomed with you, that small kid  is not strong enough. Give them clear rules and signals – specifically emphasized in the textand it will be great.

  • A dog thinks differently than humans.
  • A dog (or child) does not appear in our lives suddenly, there is always time to work with either a dog or a child.
  •  You have to determine the rules and keep an eye on their compliance by both parties
  • There are things that are just a child’s thing?  So let there be only a dog’s toys
  •  The dog is not a toy, he has feelings, sometimes has a bad day … and has every right to …  child too
  • Puppies  sleep a lot, and the kids want to play with them over and over again til they drop.
  •  whether you have children or not, the dog must have its space in the home, where no one and nothing bothers him
  •  how not to greet a dog – a must read, but the dog must also learn how to greet children
  •  calming signals – a must read.
  • do not allow children to tease the dog, it is not fun for the dog.
  •   be consistent if something was funny yesterday, today it is funny too
  • do not allow children to disturb a dog while eating.
  •  You choose a certain dog and his character and not race, and its average temperament, and if you have no experience, look for help. That is why we’ve used the word Barbet only once – these principles are universal for all dogs.

barbet-Dogs and children's, children's and dog 3

Alpha males and the likes

You must have heard about the theory of domination. And how a dog is problematic because he “does not know his place in the herd” … we will fix this and problems (which humans caused) will also disappear … all of them. So strictly speaking, physical violence or mental and penalties, a dog will be shown his place in our hierarchy – at the bottom and us alphas at the top. 

But there was research … – a theory of domination is based on observation of wolves kept in captivity (40’s – Rudolph Schenkel) and for many years had poisoned understanding of the behavior of dogs (wolves, moreover, too). Observation gave big discovery – in the herd there is never-ending bloody struggle of alpha male to maintain his position … normally just like at home with the dog. Only we do not have wolfs in homes.

In 2000, David Moss published his research on wolves, but those living in the wild – in short, a herd of wolves does not have alpha male. That herd is usually made od pair of wolves and their offspring which after an average of three years “goes on their own”, sometimes several families combine in a larger group. And these myths translated to the dogs? – Wolf puppies eat always first together with weaker individuals, strong wolves eat last (the dog does not need to eat after you). Flock of adult wolves is lead by different wolves at different times, not one (the dog is not always last in the door), and so on.

Well, not every pet, is a 50 kg wolf male;). Believe me, the meeting of menacing, grinning dog no matter how bad he looked like, is nothing compared to the way You fell when wolf crosses Your path these are completely two different worlds.