Today my toddler age niece and nephew came over with my sister for a few hours. Both kids are now of the age where in addition to walking and talking, enjoy engaging with the dogs. The 3 year old somewhere along the way (not from me!) got this idea that dogs were like toys, there for her benefit and at her beck and call. Then again she has the idea with her brother too, and adults for that matter, I think it might be a 3 year old thing. This morning the dogs and I spent a lot of time and effort dispelling this myth. It’s a work in progress.
Days like today are ones I am ever grateful and glad I have such mentally sound and tolerant dogs. More than tolerant where the kids are concerned, they both seem to enjoy and choose to engage with the kids. Supervised of course. Always. Zora did a great job reminding the 3 year old that demanding and wanting doesn’t mean the dog (or person) will comply. She’s not a robot. The 3 year old wanted Zora’s attention, and was demanding it in a very commanding ‘you do this now!’ tone, Zora ignored her completely until her tone softened and she kindly asked for ZoZo’s attention. Then Zora was more than happy to engage.
Once the kids went home, the dogs and I played some ball games in the back yard. Then took a much needed nap. Kids are exhausting.
And this evening we reviewed our food dish safety skills. Which the dogs did great with. No concerns at all when I approached them eating out of their food dish, when I dropped some extra special tasty morsels into their dish, and when I asked each to come to me moving away from their dish while they were eating. No tensing, no change in eating speed, no whale eye, just relaxed comfortable eating dogs. Good dogs.