Protect your family from the kid-dog pandemic that’s spreading like wildfire!
There’s a new virus in town, and it’s especially dangerous for kids and dogs. SPS (or Stuffed Puppy Syndrome, as it’s commonly known) is spreading like craaaaazy. But don’t panic!
We’ve got YOUR dose of the DOG SAFETY antidote right here.
Before learning about the cure, let’s discuss what exactly SPS is, why it’s so dangerous, and how can you protect YOUR family.
IDENTIFY THE SYMPTOMS:
SPS symptoms can vary. Accurately spotting the signs and seeking immediate help can keep children out of harm’s way.
If your child is exhibiting ANY of these warning signs…
WHAT IS SPS?
Stuffed Puppy Syndrome is a growing condition where REAL LIVE dogs are treated like STUFFED teddy bears. Back in the day, dogs were allowed to be dogs, but this affliction has sent our expectations haywire – having us believe that ‘wo/man’s best friend’ should just ditch their realness, and *somehow* behave like a perfect little STUFFED puppy.
WHERE DID SPS ORIGINATE?
The specific origin is unknown, but throughout the last 10-40,000 years, we humans have been living with dogs and choosing the ones who are the BEST at hunting, ratting, scenting, retrieving, herding and protecting livestock – and then breeding them to do ALL the stuff we couldn’t.
It was a match made in heaven.
BUT times have changed DRAMATICALLY.
In the last 100 years OUR lifestyle has become almost unrecognizable.
Gone are the days when we spent the majority of our time outside, tending to our land and crops. Now, so many of us live in built-up towns and cities – and we’re INSIDE (and on tech!) ALL.DAY.LONG.
So, all of those AWESOME hunting, herding and protecting dog skills (THAT WE ONCE LOVED!!) can now feel, well… ANNOYING!
So, given the choice (since we’re ALL soooo overstretched) most parents would WAY PREFER their pup to trade ALL those awesome ‘DOG JOBS’ for something more twenty first century (and teddy-ish)… like just cuddling with us, AND being totally content with just a 20min walk – without being bored for the rest of the 23+hrs they spend at home each day!!
But considering A DOG’S TRUE NEEDS… doesn’t that feel so unfair?
And is it ANY surprise that we’ve all left the door WIDE open to SPS?
HOW CAN YOU CATCH IT?
The primary source of infection is often due to prolonged exposure to TV shows, movies, marketing, and social media. The content creates a susceptibility to believing real live dogs ACTUALLY LIKE living ‘the stuffed puppy lifestyle’ – rather than doing ‘REAL dog stuff’, like digging, sniffing, chasing and fetching.
And your kids are MOST AT RISK.
They too have been unprotected from the widespread concept that dogs adore being loved up, picked up… AND even dressed up!
It’s possible to significantly reduced the risk to your family (and dog!) simply by discounting and distancing yourself from this ‘fake news’.
WHY IS IT DANGEROUS FOR KIDS?
If kids don’t learn the TRUTH about the difference in how to treat a REAL live dog vs a STUFFED puppy, they will be at huge risk of catching SPS – which may accidentally lead to a dog bite.
WHY IS IT DANGEROUS FOR DOGS?
If our REAL dogs are repeatedly treated like stuffed puppies rather than LIVE, thinking, feeling beings, it’s understandable that they may be pushed to biting point!
Tragically, when a dog snaps, not only can a child be seriously hurt, but the dog also puts THEIR OWN safety on the line. A bite can result in the dog being re-homed or euthanized.
HOW CAN PARENTS PROTECT THEIR FAMILY?
BOTH puppies and kids are (naturally) fun-lovin’, unpredictable, act-first-think-later creatures – so the biggest danger to our kids and dogs is simply expecting them to *automatically* get along together.
The truth is… they need HELP battling SPS!
Without clear direction, kids often default to what ‘feels right’ – cuddling, kissing or picking their dogs up. Almost ALWAYS, parents need to show them HOW to ‘get it right’ – which can take A TON of patience, teaching and modeling, so that they can really build a bond together.
So, if you share your home with REAL live children and dogs (rather than dolls and teddies) then it’s time to set some easy-to-follow rules to keep everyone safe.
RESPECT & UNDERSTANDING
Hands down the key to the best relationships and sure fire inoculation against SPS!
These 4 fundamental lessons will teach your kids how to be their REAL dog’s very best friend, and keep them safe from something potentially DANGEROUS happening.
- RESPECT YOUR DOG’S BODY
- Pet dogs gently with one hand collar to tail, not on the head.
- Sit with dogs, not on them.
- Don’t dress up dogs
- Don’t kiss hug or pick up dogs
- RESPECT YOUR DOG’S FEELINGS
- Learn what dogs are saying and listen when they need YOU (WATCH THIS VIDEO)
- Be kind, do things dogs like
- Don’t yell, scare, hurt or tease dogs
- Don’t be bossy or make dogs do things they don’t want to
- RESPECT YOUR DOG’S SPACE
- Always invite dogs into your space, instead of going into theirs
- Walk away from dogs when they’re in crates or resting anywhere
- Don’t go up to dogs when they are eating or chewing
- Don’t put your face in dog’s faces
- RESPECT YOUR DOG’S STUFF
- Train and play with dogs using treats and toys
- Let grownups take care of dogs when they have something they shouldn’t
- Don’t take anything from dogs, even if it’s yours.
- Ask a grown-up for help
***Has your dog ALREADY GROWLED at your kid?*** … or can you feel trouble brewing?
Don’t struggle alone – our online dog and kid program ‘Peace, Love, Kids and Dogs’ is a fun filled and educational dog and kid safety program that makes it easy to triage and get everyone on track to living a SUPER HAPPY and HEALTHY life together. If you feel like you need a one-on-one trainer to come in and help don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our Good Dog Spot trainers.