3 year old chased by dog has toilet training/behaviour regression.

(6 Posts)
boysenberry Sun 18-Aug-13 09:33:06

My 3yo daughter has been toilet trained for 6 months and found it easy in the beginning and seemed ready. She is in the Montessori class in her Creche and has always loved it there. She has a good command of language and is well able to have a conversation and air her views! She has an 18mo brother who she loves to play with. A month ago she, and a few other kids were playing at our neighbours house. All the parents were there and their Bichon frise. My LO ran into the living room where the dog and another adult were and probably startled the dog who barked pretty aggressively and chased her around the room. It lasted a couple of seconds as we were all there but ever since, she has reverted to baby talk and is having wetting accidents every day. She is now scared of dogs in general.
My neighbours were upset and are keeping the dog well away. My LO is scared if she sees or hears him, which is regularly as he barks a lot in the house. We are giving her lots of attention, cuddles, praise etc. Thank you so much for reading this, I would hugely appreciate any advice as we are growing more and more concerned.

ClaimedByMe Sun 18-Aug-13 09:39:08

We are giving her lots of attention, cuddles, praise etc

Start ignoring the baby talk and wetting, just change her pants while not making a sound, if she speaks in baby talk just say I don't understand you when you speak like that, as long as you keep giving her the attention she will keep doing it.

My dd slightly regressed with toilet training when ds was born, the health visitor gave me the above advise, within 2 days of no attention she was going back to the toilet fine.

CatWithKittens Sun 18-Aug-13 10:36:23

When our eldest, then 2, was frightened by a dog in a park we bought him a large cuddly dog glove puppet which DH made to say "woof" and jump around, on the other side of the room at first. After quite a bit of hesitation and "No Daddy", he eventually found it funny. We then introduced the quietest real dog we could find - in fact an enormous Newfoundland who fascinated him. He is now inseparable from our Airedale, acquired when he was 5 and entirely over the problem. It took a fair bit of time and patience but he did come round to dogs. I would say don't leave the fear to become entrenched. It seems to me unlikely that the dog was really trying to hurt her - it could easily have caught her if it had wanted. Can you persuade her it was trying to play and shouting a lot, like she does?

boysenberry Sun 18-Aug-13 16:55:48

Thank you both for your advice. Claimed, I will do that, the baby talk is actually the most difficult to deal with! No, catwithkittens, I don't think the dog was trying to hurt her and I definitely don't want her to have a negative association with dogs. My neighbour sent her a card from the dog already which helped initially so will take your advice. She does automatically flinch when we even pass a dog and shes in her pushchair, or will move to the other side if shes walking, not dramatically, she's genuinely afraid. So glad to hear you turned it around with your LO. Fair play! Thanks again!

BashfulBunny Sun 18-Aug-13 19:36:56

I know this is a bit clichéd but it is true - dogs can tell if someone is nervous and it tends to make them twitchy, which ends up in a vicious circle. If you would like your dd not to have a problem with dogs then you do need to knock this on the head quickly.

I absolutely agree with cat's comment. I have more experience with dogs that children wink but if you could help her understand the dog was playing then that might help. They can be like boisterous young children and not able to control their reactions very well. If she ran into the room and startled it, the dog most likely did think she was running in to play. Are there any older, quiet, dogs around that she can slowly meet and build her confidence with? An older dog that has had puppies (but has no longer!) is often more tolerent of human children as they are used to being pulled, nagged and trampled on by its own babies.

I think you can absolutely help her to recover from this and even use it to teach her to be a child who can be confident with dogs because she knows how to behave with them. It's been a scare for her, but should be treated as any other instance where she's had a bit of a shock. She can get over it with reassurance and know to be calm and quiet around dogs in future as they can be a bit excitable.

(My mum bred Great Danes)

boysenberry Sun 18-Aug-13 23:02:52

Thanks a million for your message BashfulBunny. Honestly its is not an area Im totally comfortable in as I haven't much experience with dogs myself. I have a friend with the kind of dog you describe so I think it would be a great idea to arrange some regular visits and take it from there. I really appreciate your advice, thanks again smile

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