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  #21  
Old 02.09.2011, 23:25
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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....invariably some dark-skinned immigrant kid....

...I don't have these types of experiences with whiter children...
wow...really......really....? is this post for real?
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Old 02.09.2011, 23:31
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

I think a lot of those kids are just copying and other one who did had a bad experience with a dog (or not).

I see so often kids running away of a dog not because they are scared of them but because ne did and they others do the same thing. It becomes a game.

I have a niece I could slap everytime she is acting stupidly scared of my cat (!!!!!!) A cat for God's sake. Like my cat really cares of my niece's ankle, etc. I think she does it just for the attention.

Same as he kids you meet in the street.
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Old 02.09.2011, 23:51
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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Back home, native Africans believe that getting bit by a bull terrier will make them sterile. They are petrified of those dogs too. They call them 'China dogs'.
I honestly don't know why parents may teach children to be afraid of our fury friends.
What I have come across though is that on occasion when my daughter would walk towards a dog to pet it, the owner would rather aggressively shoo her away explaining that the dog would bite her. It's happened about 3 times all with different dogs and owners (my daughter is 3). I don't mind that but it kind of freaks my daughter out, she still loves dogs though but she doesn't go over to pet them any more.
Small children are unpredictable and this can disturb a dog not used to small children. Children of a young age should be kept separate from dogs for that reason. recently a small child stuck his finger up my dogs nose and now he fears small children, as an example.
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Old 03.09.2011, 08:33
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

In Vaud the Bureau de Prevention des Accudents comes in classrooms to explain to kids how to behave with dogs. There's a nice brochure with pictures that kids can keep. And at the end of the formation a real dog comes in class and they can practice what they learned.
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Old 03.09.2011, 08:50
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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This one has been bugging me since I moved here and today just has to be the camel that broke the straw mattress... and this is going to sound racist for added effect.

I know in some cultures dogs are considered dirty. Like pigs. These cultures think European people are weird for keeping them as pets. Like we think Suzanne Sugarbaker was weird for keeping a pig as a pet. Big I digress.

So whenever I am out on a walk with my dogs, invariably some dark-skinned immigrant kid will either cower in fear and/or let out a shrill shriek, and/or start running away from us. This of course elicits my youngest dog's responses: prey drive or threat drive. The child has now either become a juicy morsel or has become a threat to me and/or my dog and must be destroyed.

So now the kid is shrieking "Aaaaaaah!!!!!!", the dog is barking "rawr rawr rawr I'm gonna get you!" I'm rolling my eyes "ugh" and the parents are looking at me like I've done something wrong.

I don't have these types of experiences with whiter children. And I have even had some dark-skinned immigrant parents tell their children not to react like that, which of course makes everything better. And I've also had my dog make some delightful friendships with young children and not eat their faces (so I know it's not that my dog doesn't like children). Before I moved here, he even got on well with some Indian children down the street who LUVVED to play with him.

So I just have to ask... why do parents (generally speaking) teach their children to act like idiots around dogs? Even if the fear is REAL (yes I recognize that some children have very negative experiences that scar them for life), at least teach the child that their behavior will elicit more negative reactions.

(then there's the other topic of -- why do some adults go out of their way, stumbling over garbage bags, broken glass, hot coals, snake pits, and Pee Wee Herman's Funhouse to get as far away from passing a dog on the sidewalk as is possible.)

It just blows my mind. End Rant.
Sounds like you need a good dose of propofol added with some prozac to get you through YOUR day.

These are the kinds of generalizations and talk that makes one feel like each time you take a step forward, some stupid post like this shows up, and makes your blood boil. The nerve of you to reference someone's child as "some dark skinned immigrant kid" What were you hoping to achieve with that comment. And you didn't event have the guts to out right say Black kids. And aren't you an immigrant as well, regardless of the colour of your skin?

Does everyone have to run over to your dog and "pet" it each time you take it for a walk. I don't expect everyone or anyone to admire or drool over my kids each time I take them out. I had an older lady scold my son once for putting his feet up on the bench at the bus stop. But I will not generalize and say "these old swiss farts".

Whatever your motivations were (apart from the dark skinned kids being scared of your precious dog), how dare they, I will say this, all cultures are different and has nothing to do with colour of one's skin. My "dark skinned immigrant kids" love dogs, their " White kid" friends are scared of our neighbour's dog.
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Old 03.09.2011, 09:06
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

Last year at a day camp, my kiddo had a dog day, when one of the lovely retired US teachers brought her huge super friendly dog. I was really pleased, it was a day camp where they normally do arts and crafts, jewelery and paper furniture, painting chairs, etc. This dog day they had made dog art, had a pic taken with the dog, the kids got a Dog Certificate, being drilled with the safety rules, etc. It was fabulous.
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Old 03.09.2011, 09:46
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog_attack

especially:
Unsupervised children

This is arguably the most critical factor in fatal dog attacks on children, who because of their small size are usually not able to withstand an attack until help arrives. Many adults survived severe dog attacks simply by virtue of the fact that they were able to sustain and fend the dogs off to some degree until assistance arrived.
Children often engage in behavior that will trigger a dog attack. For example, approaching a chained dog, trying to hug or kiss an unfamiliar animal, or trying to pull its tail.
The age group with the second-highest amount of fatalities due to a dog attack are 2-year-old children. Over 88% of these fatalities occurred when the 2-year-old child was left unsupervised with a dog(s) or the child wandered off to the location of the dog


So, children should NEVER approach dogs...that's why I tell my son, he's born here...quite white...but with dark curly hair, so you can decide what you want to categorize him as....
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Old 03.09.2011, 10:50
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

i think adults that run away have had bad experiences with dogs, maybe.
i got bitten by a dog when i was 10-12. and my dad told me that this dog could have had a bad experience with kids or the way i came closer to him. its not always in their nature to bite and that my approach remembered him about when he had a bad experience. so from that time on, i approached dogs differently: slow, more checking on how the dog is reacting. and i never got bitten again...
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Old 03.09.2011, 10:52
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog_attack

especially:
Unsupervised children

This is arguably the most critical factor in fatal dog attacks on children, who because of their small size are usually not able to withstand an attack until help arrives. Many adults survived severe dog attacks simply by virtue of the fact that they were able to sustain and fend the dogs off to some degree until assistance arrived.
Children often engage in behavior that will trigger a dog attack. For example, approaching a chained dog, trying to hug or kiss an unfamiliar animal, or trying to pull its tail.
The age group with the second-highest amount of fatalities due to a dog attack are 2-year-old children. Over 88% of these fatalities occurred when the 2-year-old child was left unsupervised with a dog(s) or the child wandered off to the location of the dog


So, children should NEVER approach dogs...that's why I tell my son, he's born here...quite white...but with dark curly hair, so you can decide what you want to categorize him as....

There is quite some difference between teaching your child to be weary and respectful of dogs, how to approach them properly and NEVER to approach one that is loose vs. "allowing" (teaching?) a child to scream and shriek and run away crying.

A month ago I was watching a friend's dog and as we were going for a walk, we started coming close (not close-close, but say 50m or so) behind a woman and her daughter walking on the sidewalk. I could tell by the girl's behavior that she was not keen on the dog so I kept slowing down and letting him sniff e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. for as long as he wanted as we walked. Although she was afraid, the slower I walked, the slower they walked so regardless of all the sniffing, we were getting closer.

Finally, we were about 20m away and from the other direction came someone else walking with a dog as well. The girl had kept looking behind them to check where we were and hadn't noticed the other dog at first, but when she did, she screamed and started loudly crying right away. She started behaving strangely physically, this really caught the attention of the other dog which looked like an Appenzeller Sennenhund (while I was walking a small'ish terrier mix). FINALLY her mother picked her up and took her to the other side of the street.

Now, my problem with this scenario isn't the girl but rather her mother. The area where we were walking dogs is pretty clearly a "dog walking area" with poop bags and disposal containers at either end of that particular stretch of sidewalk. So, the mother, seeing her daughter in distress to begin with, kept walking down that sidewalk exactly why? There is nothing along that side of the street but fence, trees, weeds and scrubby grass - perfect for getting dogs to do their thing. There was no reason for them to be on that side of the street, especially given the daughter's extreme fear of dogs.



While I do agree that physical descriptions given by the OP could have been left off, there ARE areas of the world where there is more reason to be weary of a dog running loose than others. Street dogs / wild dog packs were common enough in Hawaii and Okinawa that we were given lectures at school about being careful of strange dogs. The fault in those cases weren't generally the locals though but rather folks who moved there, got dogs as pets and then being unable / unwilling to foot the bill to take them to their next place, would simply turn them loose and leave them there when it came time to move on.

Regardless of whose fault it was though, the fact remains that the majority of the populace in either place happens to be "not white" AND they have reasons to: (a.) be more weary of dogs than many who grew up in European and North American areas and; (b.) they have "more" reason to teach their kids that dogs can be dangerous. The OP could have been more vague about what children were showing "unusual" (to him, and to me too) reactions to dogs, I think it may be important to those of us who are NOT from areas where dangerous street dogs are "common" to be aware that they ARE a problem in other cultures / areas of the world and that there is a reason for such behavior. Leaving out what those cultures are would not be particularly helpful for anyone to actually understand why this could be happening.
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Old 03.09.2011, 11:21
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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So I just have to ask... why do parents (generally speaking) teach their children to act like idiots around dogs? Even if the fear is REAL (yes I recognize that some children have very negative experiences that scar them for life), at least teach the child that their behavior will elicit more negative reactions.
KeinFranzösisch, I usually enjoy your posts - most of them are witty and knowledgable and I have to say that I am quite taken aback about the reference to "dark skinned immigrant children". Fair play if that has just been your experience but as a dog owner, I'll like to say that I've also met other children who are just as ill equipped when it comes to dealing with dogs.

Granted my dog is small and doesnt look the least bit menancing, I've experienced children regardless of skin colour - but yes, predominantly white - since we live in a predominantly white country - running and shrieking either towards or away from my dog. That really doesnt help him, due to a bad experience when he was a puppy. I tried socialising him with children then and a child made a sudden surge forward trying to feed him the treat that he views little people, no taller than 4ft with suspicion and mistrust till today.

Heck, just on Thursday, there was this little girl who got into a mega tantrum when she came up to me and asked if she could pet my dog. I explained to her nicely that my dog is still under training and isnt ready to interact with children yet - and she literally ran after us screaming the same sentence over and over, demanding to pet the dog despite me walking away and saying no.

Her mum did nothing but sat there and soaked in the sun. I had to walk faster so that she didnt catch up.

That to me, is unacceptable. I always blame parents/dog owners when negative experiences happen for both sides. Kids are generally either over enthusiastic or fearful when it comes to our 4legged friends. Its the parents duty to teach them not to be or rein in their enthusiasm. Ideally, both parents and dog owners also need to be on the alert for potential situations like this but I guess its easy for us to say to practice common sense - which sadly, I find, isnt very common with some people.
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Old 03.09.2011, 11:52
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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I'm not talking about 3 and 4 year olds. I'm talking about 10-12 year olds acting this way. There's no longer a size issue at that age, and it is very much a taught behavior.
Sorry, your original post didn't say this.

Maybe the parents (like many others) don't like dogs and this is their way of making sure that their kids won't ask for a dog.
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Old 03.09.2011, 11:55
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

I tend to think kids are like pets, in the way their impuls control might be or might not be trained at the point those two sides meet. You can try to train a dog not to want to lick a kiddo's face, you can try to train a child not to go overenthusiastic with a dog, either way, some will be ok, some won't. I agree it's the owners and parents who should really be in charge. Unless the kid is older and should know better.
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Old 03.09.2011, 12:00
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

So, would I be right in thinking that this is a bad idea?

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Old 03.09.2011, 12:02
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

They both seem to enjoy it, so probably ok?

I'd prefer this.

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Old 03.09.2011, 12:04
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

As a white-skinned person who is frightened of even the smallest dog - and there is nothing I can do to change it - having tried everything - I want all dogs to be on a lead at all times and under the control of an adult who has a certificate of competence.

I no longer go to Appenzell to walk or hike, the Appenzeller dogs are the worst of all these animals and need to be put on a long chain - one that doesn't reach to the Wanderweg.
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Old 03.09.2011, 12:10
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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They both seem to enjoy it, so probably ok?
(Nah: it buggers the dog's back up. But this thread needs more outrage, so I thought I'd throw another biscuit in)
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Old 03.09.2011, 12:42
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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As a white-skinned person who is frightened of even the smallest dog - and there is nothing I can do to change it - having tried everything - I want all dogs to be on a lead at all times and under the control of an adult who has a certificate of competence.

I no longer go to Appenzell to walk or hike, the Appenzeller dogs are the worst of all these animals and need to be put on a long chain - one that doesn't reach to the Wanderweg.
Unfortunately, I also have something like a dog phobia (I was attacked by a dog when I was a child), which I have learnt to control over the years. So I am sometimes one of those people who annoy the OP and cross the road if they see a dog approaching.
Correct me if I’m wrong and I can only talk about Zurich, there are very few dogs around in Switzerland, at least compared to other countries I’ve lived in. I think it’s natural that children panick when they see an animal they know little about. I’ve seen quite white children freaking out about seeing a dog.
Generally, I sympathise with the OP’s plight. We are all protective of our pets. I wouldn’t like anybody to shriek at the sight of my cats.
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Old 03.09.2011, 12:42
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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As a white-skinned person who is frightened of even the smallest dog - and there is nothing I can do to change it - having tried everything - I want all dogs to be on a lead at all times and under the control of an adult who has a certificate of competence.

I no longer go to Appenzell to walk or hike, the Appenzeller dogs are the worst of all these animals and need to be put on a long chain - one that doesn't reach to the Wanderweg.
Busby, while I understand and truly sympathize with anyone suffering from a phobia, and will do all I can to help you or avoid causing you distress, please understand that the law in Switzerland not only allows dogs to be off lead*, but specifically encourages owners to do so. Not providing a dog with suitable off-lead exercise can get you in trouble with the animal welfare folks.


* Except canton SZ, where all dogs must be on lead in public. We Schwyzers have to find private spaces - or head over the borders - to give our dogs the free movement they require.

Leaving a dog on a short chain is explicitly forbidden, as is leaving a dog chained for long periods of time

When you see a dog off lead, simple call ahead 'Ruf Ihr Hund, bitte!'. If necessary, explain that you have a phobia.

Most dog owners are happy to recall their dogs when asked politely. Heck, if you came across me or any of my dog-owning friends we would have already had our dogs nicely sitting a few meters off the path the moment we saw you - which would likely have been long before you saw us.

We really do understand that not all people like dogs, and we respect others' right to use the public spaces. We only wish that other people would grant us the same tolerance. In the words of Mr King, "Cant we all just get along?'

Please be aware that the majority of dogs in CH are indeed trained, and kept under voice control. For a well trained dog, voice control is as good as a lead - and the law agrees.

I would encourage those of you who really are unhappy around dogs off lead to do your hiking in Ausserschwyz.


ETA:


From the TschV, article 71:

1 Hunde müssen täglich im Freien und entsprechend ihrem Bedürfnis ausgeführt werden. Soweit möglich sollen sie sich dabei auch unangeleint bewegen können.

2 Können sie nicht ausgeführt werden, so müssen sie täglich Auslauf haben. Der Aufenthalt im Zwinger oder an der Laufkette gilt nicht als Auslauf.

3 Angebunden gehaltene Hunde müssen sich während des Tages mindestens fünf Stunden frei bewegen können. In der übrigen Zeit müssen sie sich in einem Bereich von mindestens 20 m2 an einer Laufkette bewegen können. Sie dürfen nicht mit einem Zughalsband angebunden werden.

http://www.admin.ch/ch/d/sr/455_1/a71.html

.

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Old 03.09.2011, 13:11
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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This one has been bugging me since I moved here and today just has to be the camel that broke the straw mattress... and this is going to sound racist for added effect.

I know in some cultures dogs are considered dirty. Like pigs. These cultures think European people are weird for keeping them as pets. Like we think Suzanne Sugarbaker was weird for keeping a pig as a pet. Big I digress.

So whenever I am out on a walk with my dogs, invariably some dark-skinned immigrant kid will either cower in fear and/or let out a shrill shriek, and/or start running away from us. This of course elicits my youngest dog's responses: prey drive or threat drive. The child has now either become a juicy morsel or has become a threat to me and/or my dog and must be destroyed.

So now the kid is shrieking "Aaaaaaah!!!!!!", the dog is barking "rawr rawr rawr I'm gonna get you!" I'm rolling my eyes "ugh" and the parents are looking at me like I've done something wrong.

I don't have these types of experiences with whiter children. And I have even had some dark-skinned immigrant parents tell their children not to react like that, which of course makes everything better. And I've also had my dog make some delightful friendships with young children and not eat their faces (so I know it's not that my dog doesn't like children). Before I moved here, he even got on well with some Indian children down the street who LUVVED to play with him.

So I just have to ask... why do parents (generally speaking) teach their children to act like idiots around dogs? Even if the fear is REAL (yes I recognize that some children have very negative experiences that scar them for life), at least teach the child that their behavior will elicit more negative reactions.

(then there's the other topic of -- why do some adults go out of their way, stumbling over garbage bags, broken glass, hot coals, snake pits, and Pee Wee Herman's Funhouse to get as far away from passing a dog on the sidewalk as is possible.)

It just blows my mind. End Rant.

Thank you very much for bringing up this topic! I was actually thinking of starting a similar one myself.

I am an immigrant whom you may or may not consider white. I am muslim too, so I do consider pigs not edible and dogs ritually not the cleanest animal either. But I did own a dog when I was a small kid, a german shepherd looking thing that had pure black coat (dont know the name). Nevertheless, here is my take on this issue:

1) I do find people who live with these huge and dirty animals in their small apartments homes in crowded cities indeed to be weird.

2) I do teach my kids to be cautious near animals who can tear their faces off if they want to, which their wimpy owners can not do anything to prevent it if the animal chooses to. Just tell me it does not happen, and I will post a million news stories how kids were mauled and even killed by pet dogs

3) My wife was raised in a village where dogs have real life duties and are therefore rather vicious against foreigners, so she fears them intensely

4) I once had a old guy with a large unleashed dog approaching me and my 2 yr old son, and the dog started running at us. I picked my son rather hastily, and the old dude proceeded rambling in angry swiss german showing his displeasure of my behavior. Now, if he was not an old gentlemen who deserves respect from younger people, I WOULD BUST HIS FACE IN right there. So, beware!

5) A crowded, dense city is no place for huge unleashed dogs. Your love for your dog can not be considered with equal terms with safety of my human children. I can bring here the f.king biggest and baddest Kangal dog here and terrorise the dogs owners like you and their sissy dogs, but I dont do that. Learn to respect others civilized lives where they want to live free of a crazy dog running at them out of nowhere.

End of rant.
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Old 03.09.2011, 13:18
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Re: Teaching Children to Fear Dogs

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1) I do find people who live with these huge and dirty animals in their small apartments homes in crowded cities indeed to be weird.
What? Muslims?
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