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Oh no way. You must be mistaken. Not MY kid.

If you know me, you know my children. They are wonderful and amazing little beings. My oldest, Madelyn, is nearly 6 and has taken to Oliver in a way I could never have anticipated. She loves him. Intuitively, she knows exactly what to do (except when she let him lick her finger after eating a chocolate brownie). She knows how to move him, how to distract him, and she loves to train him. She wants him in her room when she's reading books and will play with him outside for an hour. It's adorable and sweet. She says she wants to be a vet, and who knows - with this interest and gentle way about her when it comes to animals, maybe she will be!

Our 3 year old, Millie, is a slightly different story. She's silly and crazy and likes to push boundaries. She's also a toddler, so she's still a bit clunky and cavegirl-like, but I tried to prepare her well for how to engage with Oliver. She can recite what he should not eat, how to pet him, what not to do, and the full list of appropriate/inappropriate dog things that I teach to all my clients' children. She was totally prepared and ready to go. So you can imagine my surprise when she started quickly ticking most of the boxes off the list entitled "Things your children should never do to a dog." She tried to ride him. She pulled his tail. She grabbed something out of his mouth. She tried to move him by shoving him with her foot and saying "Ollie is in my SPOT!!!" We call Millie an "experiential" learner. You can tell her a thousand times not to do something, eat something, touch something. But she usually has to find out for herself. She's independent and amazing. Hopefully she's gotten these things out of her system now, and also hopefully we've made it very clear what the consequences of her actions COULD be. Thankfully, Oliver didn't seem to mind, but we won't take those chances again.

Kids and dogs are a very tricky combination. No matter how well you train them (both of them), they are both impulsive, immature and terrible decision makers. So if you have both, please watch them carefully so they both stay safe and out of trouble!

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