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How to get a two year old to stop hurting animals?

My two year old keeps throwing our new puppy. We recently bought a new dog and she keeps picking it up and throws it, or bites it. She still bites our bigger dog aswell. I've tried sitting down and telling her she is hurting these dogs, i've swatted her butt. Just not sure if this is normal? Should I just find my dog's a new home? is this a faze? will she grow out of it?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 11:56 AM on Feb. 22, 2011 in Pets

Answers (11)
  • Don't let her near the dog for now, she is probably thinking this is some sort of toy, keep harping on hurting the poor thing, but do not let her get near him and eventually she will get the picture.

    Answer by older at 11:59 AM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • I could be a phase, i knew many toddlers who went through a biting stage. My sister used to bite her kids (would not draw blood obviously) when they bit others & would say "SEE! It hurts, don't do it!" I thought it was rough, but in all really worked! Their biting stages lasted only a few days.

    Answer by samurai_chica at 12:00 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • Get a playpen and keep her in it, telling her that you have to protect the puppy from her. That may seem backward to you, but seeing the puppy having more freedom than she does just might work. At two, she is able to understand the concept of pain. I was a biter of humans, not dogs, and my mother broke me by biting me every time I bit someone else. I don't recommend that you throw her, however!!!! That might be a little over the top. I don't think she will grow out of it without some discipline to help her. It's a tendency that needs to be broken. If she will hurt animals, she will also likely hurt people.

    Answer by NannyB. at 12:01 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • Dont take the dog away... she needs to learn... with my son when he hits one of us or the dog we may give him a light swat back to let him know it hurts then show him how to pet nice saying "nice doggy" or "nice mommy" now if he goes to hit and we say "nice ...whatever it is" he gets it and pets takes time and patients and babysteps. my son is 15 months old btw.

    Answer by Finkette at 12:11 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • Physically show her how to treat the animal. Taker her hand and gently pat/stroke the puppy. While guiding her to pet the animal say "Be gentle with the puppy."

    The majority of kids are not aural learners. They must physically be taught.

    And please don't leave her unsupervised with the puppy. The puppy deserves better...

    Answer by Mom_to_Skyler at 12:14 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • Please don't think I'm being harsh in my answer... I would find a new home for both dogs, they shouldn't have to be hurt. Your 2 yr. old doesn't understand what she's doing yet. but the animals shouldn't have to suffer until she does.

    Answer by Alexias30 at 12:15 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • actually, there's a lot of branches of the humane society that won't even place a dog in a house with a two year old because this sort of thing happens a lot.

    you may need to re-think having animals in the house if this is happening. It's not fair to them, and it wouldn't be the dog's fault if the dog defended itself.
    you child may end up getting hurt.

    Answer by ItsMe89 at 12:16 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • I would model over and over again how to 'pat the dog nice.' Take her hand and pat the dog and tell her this is how we pat the dog nicely. I would discipline if she bites/throws the dog. And I would keep them separated unless you are right there supervising her, even if it means you have a baby gate up with the dog on one side and her on the other. Otherwise, someone is going to end up hurt- either the dog getting thrown or your daughter when the dog has finally had enough and decides to bite her back.

    Answer by Freela at 3:56 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • Children at that age are usually very empathetic. Instead of swatting her butt run to your dog and coddle him/her like you would a child that was just hurt. She may pick up on your reaction, how big a deal it is to you and how much nice attention the dog is getting.

    Answer by meandrphoto at 4:48 PM on Feb. 22, 2011

  • i am not getting rid of my dogs. they love my kids. no way. why does everyone jump to saying to give them up. insane.

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 8:03 PM on Feb. 23, 2011

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