A five step program to overcome pet phobias in children
Let’s face it: animals can be scary to some children. They make loud noises, jump and lick your face, which to a child can be traumatizing. But if your child’s fear of pets is preventing you from adopting, don’t worry! Try the tips offered below:
1. Don’t force contact:
Forcing your child to pet an animal or insisting that a pet is harmless may only increase your child’s fear. It’s important to keep your child calm around the dog or cat. If they are forced to make contact it may only frighten your child (or the animal) even more.
2. Story Time:
Read your child stories about happy pets and owners. Depending on your child’s age this can greatly impact how your child feels about dogs and cats.
3. Practice Pet:
Try showing your child how to properly act around pets with a stuffed animal. Show him or her how to gently pet and safely play with their furry friend. This makes for a lovable practice buddy that your child can feel more comfortable around.
4. Play Date:
Once your child stops fearing pets at a distance, it may be time to try introducing him or her to a friend or relative’s dog or cat in doses.
Finally, take your child to a pet adoption site, and try letting your child pick out their new pet! The excitement of having a pet of their choice may be the incentive they need to loose their fear.
About Camp Bow Wow® Where a dog can be a dog®
In just 10 years, Camp Bow Wow, the premier doggy daycare and overnight camp, has grown to include over 100 Camps across North America.