2017-11-15 / Front Page

Kindness is contagious

The first thing you can do to teach children to be kind to animals is set a good example. Children do as they see. You must start while the child is very young.

First, they must be taught how to approach a dog or cat, with permission only and never rushing up to them. Approach slowly and down on their level, crouch down and let the animal come to them.

A good website to visit is: www.volunteerguide.org/hours/serviceprojects/kind-to-animals

When you teach a child to be kind to animals, you help pave the way to a brighter future for all living beings. Animals benefit because the next generation has learned to treat them with respect and compassion, reducing incidents of animal cruelty. Children benefit because learning about compassion and empathy early in life builds moral character, reduces violence, and builds a sense of responsibility.

Animal cruelty is a heinous act, punishable by law in every state. Many children that hit and tease animals have often witnessed or been mistreated themselves.

In roughly one-third of families suffering from domestic abuse, at least one child has hurt or killed an animal.

No animal should be hit or teased. Animals learn to be kind when they are treated with respect and kindness. A happy animal is more inclined to want to please.

What to do: Under your watchful eyes, involve children in the care of animals. Teach them to feed and water them, take them for walks, bathe them, if called for. Let them go with you to the Veterinarian. Do not leave all the care up to the child. Young children are easily distracted and may not remember to feed and water an animal.

When a child is involved in the naming of an animal, they feel a little responsible for them. As the child grows, give them a little more responsibility. They may want to enroll in a dog obedience class, which is good for the child, good for the dog. Let the child play with the dog, with appropriate dog toys. This builds a bond between them.

No one really enjoys cleaning a cat’s litter box, but someone must do it. Let the child observe the proper way to clean a litter box, then, next time, let the child do it. But don’t make it a regular chore because they will probably “forget” more than they remember.

Have toys on hand that the cat enjoys. Let the children interact with the cat with these toys. www.showkindnessalways.blogspot.com

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