Dog chasing small children
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Thread: Dog chasing small children

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    DefaultDog chasing small children

    Hello All,

    We have a 9 month old puppy and we also have two small children. He is wonderful with the kids except for one problem. When we are playing outside and the kids are running around he starts to run after them and sometimes knocks them to the ground. Sometimes he just runs along side them, but other times he runs into them.

    How would you suggest I handle this? Keep him on a long lead and not let him run with them at all? I need advice because I'm afraid one of my children is going to get hurt.

    TIA!

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  3. #2
    Kathryn Guest

    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    Get rid of the kids and tell them when they are full grown they can come back.. lol j/k
    I have a 3yo and he likes to run the dogs take after him and I stop it. The reason being I don't want them to take off after another little kid running down the street just because its fun.. The dogs have their own play time (and a lot of it) thats when its okay for them to run around..

  4. #3
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    It's called prey drive. When something or someone runs a dog will run after. It's a game for your dog. Try to get your kids not to run in the yard and the pup will not chase them.

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  6. #4
    kaytris is offline Senior Member
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  7. #5
    rottnlab dad's Avatar
    rottnlab dad is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    Quote Originally Posted by nellies mom
    Try to get your kids not to run in the yard and the pup will not chase them.
    Sorry, but I disagree - you might not want your kids to run around in the house, but I can't imagine discouraging your kids from running around in your yard. You need to train your dog not to chase the kids (although I don't have any good suggestions for how to do that training).

    Bella

  8. #6
    EMA
    EMA is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    Does he only chase your kids or does he chase anything that runs? It is a game with him and so if he catches them - he's being rewarded. We need to figure out a way to reward him for not running to the kids. Maybe try at first on a short line and do obedience stuff with him (sit, down, come) in the yard with the kids running around. Try to get him to relax and when he ignores them or doesn't want to go after them - reward him. Then progress to a longline. Maybe have the kids throw a ball for fetch - so the dog can play with the kids, but when they are running around, the dog needs to relax. Anytime he is not chasing he gets rewarded. Eventually he will learn that he doesn't get rewarded for chasing them, but gets rewarded when he's not chasing them. He can also get attention from them when he's calm and relaxed. You didn't say how old your kids are, so I don't know if all of its possible, but its definitely do-able to teach your dog to not chase your children. The yard is for your kids to play too, there can be a peaceful and safe coexistence there with a little bit of work.

    Betsy

  9. #7
    wa-lab's Avatar
    wa-lab is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    Thank you for asking this question. We too have a pup that wants to chase our kids, 9 and 5. I had the feeling most of this board only had fur kids. Good to see there are others attempting to raise a puppy with children.

  10. #8
    Join Date
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    Ahh... puppyhood. We don't have human kids yet, but this was a recurring problem for us at the dog park (off lead) and when we were walking around the neighborhood (on lead) and kids would want to pet her or would start running around squealing (I could question the parental wisdom of bringing squealing toddlers to an off-lead dog park, but I digress...) Violet would try to jump on them and knock them to the ground and lick and all that fun puppy stuff - especially if they ran. I'm not sure exactly what stopped this behavior but sometime around 12 months it just sort of went away.
    I think for many lab pups this may be one of those things like nipping... if you patiently discourage it and encourage good behavior, they'll outgrow it. Now she is still quite interested in running up to them, but does not trample, chase, or jump on kids (Of course, I may have just jinxed myself.) I figure if we can get Violet through it, most people will be just fine... my husband and I know almost nothing about how to train a dog, except what we get off of this forum.

  11. #9
    Dakkerdog is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    My son has a few torn shirts from when Moose was little. I had a hard time keeping my son from allowing the play to get out of hand. Part is teaching the kids what is appropriate and the other is training the dog. I personally would not let my children be alone with a dog at that age and I think the long line is a good idea. Once Moose would get wound up it was hard to calm him down and I usually had to bring him in and crate him, or at least remove him from my son, but that wasn't easy. I found it easier in the long run to teach my son correct behaviour with Moose.
    Sharon, loved by Moose & Sky

  12. #10
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    DefaultRe: Dog chasing small children

    lol...typical puppy. If you want your dog to watch and not join them attach a leash to him and when he gets up to run with the kids give him a correction. Otherwise you can always put the dog away until he is older (and slower, hehe).

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