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Just got our new Cairn puppy


twoboys1princess
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Hi All,

Well we just got our new Cairn puppy a couple days ago, and my 4 year old daughter will not put him down. She carries him everyplace. She just loves him so much, she thinks its her very own baby. It's really cute, but I was just wondering if you all know, if you can handle them "too much." He doesn't seem to mind at all being lugged around all over the place, being put in the doll carriage, or whatever, but I'm just afraid she is handling him too much. Any thoughts on this would be much appreciated.

I will post pictures as soon as I can find my camera that has been lost since Easter!! :confused1:

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Personally I think letting a four-year-old lug around a puppy is a disaster in the making. But I'm crotchety that way.

Add me to the crotchety list. Little humans don't always know when they've crossed the line,

and little dogs are too young to always know the right behaviour as well.

Max and Nelly
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I would limit the amount of handling your DD does. A puppy is very easy to carry around, but holding him incorrectly might cause physical harm. I know your DD is having lots of fun with him...who wouldn't?....but I would limit her to playing with the puppy on the floor and prevent her from carrying him around.

I can't wait to see your pictures!

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Actually she is very gentle with him, and I've shown her the proper way to carry him, so I'm not concerned she is going to harm him physically. She always carries him the right way, I wouldn't let her pick him up if she didn't. I'm more concerned he is just being handled to much.

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I do have to agree with all the others but to add something on a different note....a puppy can be nippy even if he doesn't seem to have that tendency. There might come a time when he doesn't want to be carried around and will let your DD know it.

Just my opinion

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I'm not an expert at doggie training, but the trainer I'm working with said I shouldn't be picking up my pooch often because it can cause cause aggressiveness. I'm not sure of the reasoning, but i can tell you my 14month old is very aggressive with other dogs and we are working on that now. So I figgured I'd tell you what I was told, besides the physical problems a youngster could cause.

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Look at it this way, when your daughter started learning to walk and get around you let her as long as she was in a safe place. Can you imagine carring her everywhere, it would get old after a whild. The puppy needs to walk around and learn. I think your daughter would understand if you tell her he needs to walk.

I think above all the puppy needs to learn how to get around and what his job is in your family. You don't want a dog that needs to be carried everywhere. I limited handling with my, walking on a leash was the important issue for me.

Liz

Rebel, Hammurabi, Sugar, Dirty Harry, Paint, Duncan and Saffron

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Cairns (like probably most dogs) are also fierce defenders of their "pack" (either canine siblings or humans), and soon that instinct will come out in your dog.

When the doorbell rings, my pup will run to the door and bark--because she's defending her territory. When I scoop her up to put her in the nearby kitchen, she fights me holding her. Because if she's being held, she can't defend herself or her territory. You don't want your daughter holding her one day when this defense mode kicks in.

And you also don't want to teach the dog that the way to get from Point A to Point B is being carried there; you don't want to create a clingy dog. The puppy needs to learn to explore on his own (gaining confidence) and figure out the boundaries of where he is allowed to go.

It's good to give a dog some loving and hugging, but, yes, I think there is such a thing as holding a dog too much.

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Hmmm, where's the fine inbetween line for me to straddle ? Instead of her carrying the pup can you have your daughter start teaching him/her some basics like sitting ? Maybe with something like that your daughter can have some safe interaction and be the teacher. Pictures please, get busy and find that camera ! :)

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Well, I am of the less-crotchety---lol. Not to say that I don't agree with what they are saying...I'm just a little laid back. My daughter is 3 and loves our pups. From day 1, they knew she came 1st on the totem pole. On that same line, we make sure to instill the idea of respect of all creatures---animal or human--to Emmy. She loves to carry the pups around, even though Ellie is almost 11 lbs now, she will let Emmy carry her. She knows when the pups want down and we never leave her alone when they are all playing--all of them can get too rough.

The only thing I can say from experience is once the puppy gets tired, he will let your daughter know. The bad thing is, he may start to avoid your daughter because he knows he gets no freedom. I would just watch the puppies cues and never leave them alone. Believe me, if every time your daughter picked up the puppy, you told her to put it down, she will start to equate the puppy to getting in trouble and may act out--against the pup. And that spells T-R-O-U-B-L-E.

My dogs are socialized with many, many, kids in the childcare and it helps the kids learn respect and the dogs learn their boundaries with children. I have found that mine are so much like the toddlers, they just fit right in--digging in the sand pile, going down the slide, eating worms...ew...lol.

Anyways, congrats on your puppy!

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We're the Cairns of America

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I just loved holding my babies when they were small too.

I guess this goes all the way back to my childhood.......

me and the family cat (I think this qualifies as improper handling, but my Mom said the cat loved me)

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I think as long as you are supervising and she's holding it correctly it couldn't be harmful. I wish my girls liked to be picked up, but neither do. Tabitha flips out when you pick her up.

I think we need to see pics of the puppy :)

Edited by Teri9672
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I can't think of a reason not to let your daughter play with your dog, just as long as you are supervising (I don't trust any animals with small children by themselves...that's just a recipe for disaster). I grew up on a farm, basically, with tons of dogs, cats, chickens, rabbits, horses, ducks...you name it. I can't remember a time when we weren't playing and half torturing some poor creature as kids :) I think it teaches a respect for one another...the kid learns to respect the animal and learns to pick up on the signals that the animal has had enough, and vice versa. I think it is a great opportunity for you to teach your daughter about handling animals, even training animals. Maybe I'm more old-fashioned, but I think as long as you, as the parent, keep the situation under control, then there isn't a reason to not let your daughter play with the dog as long as the dog tolerates it.

Just my opinion.

Edited by sj4iy
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I would worry that your daughter might trip or fall and drop the puppy accidently. They "break" rather easily even when falling from the arms of a young child (or jumping out of a doll carriage). Plus, the older the puppy gets the more it will have a mind of it own about what it wants to do and when. So I would limit the carrying and interaction to the times when you are there to supervise.

Cairns are generally great with kids though and the more supervised contact the two have, the better.

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I'm intrigued.... how does holding a puppy make it aggresive? Barney has zero aggression toward other dogs, but has been aggressive with us in certain situations. I loved to hold and cuddle him when he was a baby. In fact, my family said I coddled him too much! But Barney has without a doubt bonded with me the most, and he will not sleep on anyone's lap but mine.

As far as kids holding a puppy, I only let my 9 year old hold Barney when I was standing right there. Mostly because he was so strong and once he got to wiggling, it was hard to hold on to him! Even I had a hard time hanging on to him! She could easily have dropped him on his head! I had to chuckle when it was said that puppies "break" easily! There were several instances when Barney jumped off something, like off our back steps, would land on his head, and just get up and go again! He has been so rough and tough since day one! Although I signed up for pet insurance just in case! :lol:

All creatures great and small, the Lord God, He made them all!

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I have 3 kids; 11, 8 & 5 yrs. and I also take care of kids in my home. Max is definitely use to kids but it all depends on the kid I think. Our last cairn who we put down last year at 13 yrs was our first baby....then 3 kids later! My daughter is 8yrs and is very confident with Max more so than my 11 yr old son. Max senses this and knows she is one of his leaders. My 11 yr old son is not confident in picking him up and I don't push although I would like him to feel less intimidated. My 5 yr old is not allowed to pick him up at all...he's too big for him now and I didn't let him when he was a puppy because I knew he was going to grow up into a fiesty cairn. He was only allowed to hold him if he was sitting on the couch with total supervision. My daughter is very comfortable with him and picks him up and takes him out on the leash and has no problems. When Max was about 6 mths he started to sometimes growl slightly when she picked him up but we persevered and he now knows she is one of the pack leaders. He is a very cuddly dog unlike our first cairn which I think is because of her. She is very gentle with him but also puts him in his place when he needs to be. When you have kids in the household I think different rules come into play. It's important that the dog knows that all members of the house (including the kids) are the leaders and therefore they have to be handled by them obviously under close supervision. The other kids I take care of are not allowed to pick him up... I do have one that I trust in the fenced in yard to play fetch with him. It all depends on the kid and we can't forget that our lovely furbabies are still dogs and can't be trusted 100 %. As they grow they become very strong as we all know and very squirmy and can easily jump out of arms. Max is definitlely my daughters dog....I just peeked in on them and once she is asleep he sneaks up to the pillow and sleeps beside her head. He starts out at the bottom of her bed. She says she's going to have her own cairn when she grows up. Good luck and I hope your daughter and puppy create a special bond together.

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The following is just my opinion....

I'm sure she is gentle with him as you say but she is a 4 year old and you can't expect her to use any descretion. I would limit her carrying the puppy around. As the puppy gets older, it is likely to have much less patience and he is going to start nipping at her and she is going to be quite upset. I would stop it before that happens.

I find that puppies tend to treat children like their own siblings -- which means quite a lot of nipping and 4 year olds have tender feelings... and won't understand when the puppy nips her.

I can't wait to see the new puppy!

Barbara

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