How to overcome the fear of dogs?
The four-eyed, shaggy friend is one of the most intimate desires of many children. In addition, psychologists say that pets develop an ability to sympathize in a child and teach them to take care and care. But it happens that these cute creatures cause genuine fear in the offspring, the child begins to shun dogs and may even start crying if some of them simply suit him to smell.
Zoophobia is a very common type of psychological problems. Statistics show that they suffer up to 3.5% of the total population. But, fortunately, it is possible to get rid of them, even without resorting to the qualified help of the psychologist.
Find the roots
Sometimes, in order for a child to be frightened, it is enough for him to hear the sudden barking of a dog. Especially often this occurs between the ages of 1 and 3 years, when the baby is actively exploring the outside world and is often busy with his thoughts, when suddenly a loud sound is heard behind his back. Even a small puppy can frighten him, let alone a big dog.And from 3 to 6 years old the child begins to be afraid of our smaller friends, regarding them as an object of aggression.
Before you begin home therapy, it is worth figuring out where this phobia came from. Perhaps the baby was frightened by the sound, and maybe you yourself startled by one type of dog. Then the child subconsciously regards this as a sign of danger.
Another common reason - bites, because sometimes even the most friendly animals can bite for no apparent reason.
How to solve a problem?
What to do when the cause of fear was found? It is necessary to prepare for a gradual, painstaking work.
- Fear is sometimes easier to prevent, therefore, from an early age, show your child the photos and pictures of friendly dogs, movies and videos with their participation. Tell that these animals can save people, help them. In addition, it is always fun to play with them.
But pay attention to the fact that in dealing with other dogs it is better to keep your distance. With an older child, outline the rules of conduct: do not tug the dog by the ears and tail, do not approach it when it is eating, do not tease.
Explain also that dogs, like people, can have different characters and moods, so if a child notices that the pet is aggressive, do not approach it.
- Avoid the phrases "Don't approach the dog, it bites" or "This dog will not bite." You can never foresee the behavior of the animal, and the child sincerely believes that what the parent said is the ultimate truth. As a result, the child can not only acquire a phobia, but also stop trusting you.
- If the child already has a fear of animals, in any case, do not blame. Measure him and your child, for you even a big dog can be not dangerous to look at, and for a child its dimensions compare to an elephant. In addition, the baby should always know that with all the fears he can come to his parents, who will understand and protect.
- To overcome kinofobiya, try to gradually reduce the distance to the object of fear. So, going out and seeing the dog, first stand with the baby in the distance, do not remind him of fear, try to just talk about the animal: the dog is big or small, what color is it, what breed, why the collar is needed, etc. Over time, move closer, firmly holding the child by the hand and not focusing attention on the fear. As the baby comes closer, praise him for his courage.
- When the acute stage of the phobia is eliminated, give the baby time to stop near the dog area and watch as they play or train with them.Do not forget about constant verbal contact, so that the child does not remain alone with his problem.
- If the child already boldly approaches the training site of dogs, then you can go to the final stage. It is better for her to find a friend with a calm friendly dog who can be petted. First do it yourself, so that the baby is sure that it's safe. Then let the child do it. If he refuses, do not insist, just set aside for the next time. If the child agreed, talk to him about feelings, ask about what kind of dog: fluffy, soft, warm.
- Another way to have fun with a hidden meaning is to visit a pet store or an interesting photo walk, in which the baby will be entrusted with an important mission - to photograph the most diverse pets.
- When your efforts succeed, wait a while and offer to buy a puppy. If the proposal is perceived with a bang, you can be sure you won.
In the process of dealing with fear, you need to know that sometimes it will be enough for a few weeks, and in some cases it will take a whole year.Do not try to count how much time has passed since the start of a pleasant acquaintance with the four-legged friends and do not stop what was started in the middle of the road. Do not succumb to irritation and anxiety, because they will be passed on to the child.
If you seriously approach the problem of zoophobia, you will soon be able to see the first results - the little one will no longer have a terrible anxiety before the pets and will be happy to look at them. But if, as a result of all your efforts, you still could not achieve the desired effect, visit a child psychologist, who will definitely help to cope with kinofobiya.
Dogs are a man’s best friend, but their friendliness often depends on your attitude towards them. Be friendly, and the dog will surely respond to you in return.
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