Families Need to Feel Safe and Secure at Home!
Do you have kids? How about pets? Are you expecting a new addition to your family soon? Many of our blog readers and customers have families. We do too! We have three teenagers and we an adorable dog named Henry: you might have visited our office and met him.
During the pandemic, many families adopted new pets as they had more time to spend at home! Having a new family pet brings joy and laughter, but also new responsibility and safety and security hazards.
While we as adults can certainly have accidents at home, we generally know how to keep ourselves safe and secure. It’s a little different for kids and pets: they love to explore new things, and by nature, are curious about the world around them. It’s even more important to set some safety rules and guidelines when you have both kids and pets!
In honor of National Kids and Pets Day on April 26, 2021, we present this article with tips to keep your kids and pets safe at home.
National Kids and Pets Day is April 26, 2021
From National Day Calendar:
“National Kids and Pets Day on April 26th raises awareness of the importance of picking the right pet for children at the right time. It’s an important decision that can lead to a lifetime of bonding between pet and child.
The day also celebrates the bonds children and pets can share and a day remember safety where our pets and children are concerned. There are many benefits of having a pet in a child’s life. From fostering natural nurturing abilities to developing responsibilities, pets have a lifelong impact on a child’s development.
It is also important to remember that small children as well as the pets may not know their limitations and should not be left alone with each other. They should always be supervised to prevent injury to both the child and the animal.”
Safety Rules and Guidelines To keep Kids and Pets Safe at Home!
Never leave kids and pets alone, unsupervised.
This includes indoor as well as outdoor play time! Kids and pets needs to have an adult nearby to supervise their playtime and while it’s tempting to leave the room to take care of chores, don’t. Pets are unpredictable and they can get triggered by your child’s behavior. Take your child with you when moving from room to room, or separate the child and animal (crate or gate, or even closed room) when you are not able to supervise.
Outdoors, always supervise around pools, and in the yard!
Teach your child to not disturb your pet when the pet is sleeping, eating or chewing a toy.
A pet needs to feel safe and secure and when their sleep, feeding time or playtime is interrupted, they can get annoyed, or even aggressive. To avoid this happening, teach your child to leave the pet alone during these activities.
Don’t allow a child to touch (or play with) a pets’ waste as it carries disease
Cat litter boxes look like fun sandboxes to young children. Cat’s waste carries disease and you do not want your child to play with the cat’s waste. At the same time, a dog carries diseases as well: teach a child the proper way to dispose of a dog’s poop.
No rough housing or teasing
While you may play games with your dog or cat that can be labeled ‘roughhousing’, don’t allow your child to play those same games. It is most likely that you as the adult in the home are the alpha. A dog or cat will accept certain dominant behavior from you, the alpha, but not from a child that is smaller. To avoid this happening, avoid playing these types of games in front of the children, as they often emulate what they see! Games to avoid include tug-of-war, picking up the pet and spraying it with a hose.
Dog Bite Statistics To Wrap your Head Around!
It’s hard not to mention dog bites when we talk about kids, pets and safety. Prevention is so very important and that is why supervision of kids and pets at all times is THE MOST important rule to stick to!
Here are some crazy statistic to wrap you head around.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Humane Society of the United States, there are about 4.7 million dog bites every year in the U.S. These bites result in approximately 16 fatalities.
- Approximately 800,000 people seek medical attention for dog bites in the U.S. every year — about 1,000 people require emergency care for dog bite injuries every day (according to a study produced by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality).
- About half of those injured in dog attacks are children. The rate of dog bite accidents is highest for those between the ages of 5-9 (according to the American Veterinary Medical Association).
- Nearly 2/3 of injuries among children ages 4 and younger are to the head or neck region, because of their height. Injuries are higher for boys than for girls.
- According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the number of Americans hospitalized for dog bites nearly doubled over a 15-year period. The average cost of a dog bite-related hospital stay was $18,200. There were 4 times as many dog bite-related ER visits and 3 times as many hospital stays in rural areas than in urban areas.
Prevention is the Key to Keeping Kids and Pets Safe at Home
Teaching children the right to play and care for a pet is another important safety measure.
We love our children and we love our pets. We know you do too! Stay safe and secure in your own home at all times!