Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Bergen County NJ
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Photo Submissions 12 Times in 12 Posts
It's a really nice intention to get a dog for a young child, but in practice, it often doesn't work out. Dogs are more aware of differences between people than we give them credit for. For example, people may wonder if dogs can distinguish between men and women, adults and children, and of course they do. The dog will often gravitate toward one or both adults, leaving the child in the lurch because "their" dog prefers to be with the adult and follow commands from the parent. Also, the breed is a high maintenance grooming breed and the child is absolutely not capable of undertaking the task of keeping the hair knot free, even if the dog gets regular hair cuts. I used to groom and I've seen many adolescent puppies come in a tangled, dirty matted mess. I ask the owner, what happened here? To which they usually responded, well this is my 7 year old's dog and obviously she just didn't brush him enough. This is completely unfair to the child. I never blame a child for a matted dog that needs to then get shaved. This is the adult's responsibility.
Just my thoughts. A dog is for the family and the child can and should be a part of taking care of the family pet, but ultimately the parent needs to be in control.