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AIBU to think children shouldn't be allowed to scare animals?

(90 Posts)
ButtercreamIcing Wed 17-Aug-16 20:44:01

I am in a seaside town.

I constantly see children (not tiny ones, but 8 and above) running at flocks of baby seagulls and groups of pigeons to make them panic and scatter.

Not once have I seen a parent step in and explain that it's unkind to scare animals while they're peacefully feeding.

The other day I even saw two little boys throwing stones at baby seagulls and actively trying to hit them. I told them to stop, and the boys asked "why?" so I said that they wouldn't like it if someone bigger threw stones at them.

I think being kind to vulnerable creatures (or at least not actively nasty), especially fledgelings and babies, is an important thing to foster in kids.


Gizlotsmum Wed 17-Aug-16 20:46:11

No. I tell my 2 two not to chase birds

PurpleDaisies Wed 17-Aug-16 20:46:20

I agree with you.

No responsible parent allows their child to throw stones at animals. What were the parents doing?

Missgraeme Wed 17-Aug-16 20:46:49

Most serial kids started off tormenting and torturing animals.
It is the start of bullying behaviour imo.
Ps me right off when parents just stand there letting them. Prob kids called Fred /Rose etc.

StrongTeaHotShower Wed 17-Aug-16 20:48:46

Throwing stones at animals is always unacceptable and parents should intervene if it happens. Chasing them, if they can easily fly away is ok but I haven't seen children older than 5 do it before.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Wed 17-Aug-16 20:49:29

I agree with you, and chasing animals is also not ok.

SuperManStoleMyPants Wed 17-Aug-16 20:49:39

Totally agree, I have never let any if my kids scare any animals and as I'm a bit of an arse, I have pointed out the poor behaviour that other children have been allowed to get away with when it comes to animals. Not on. Not allowed. Not happening.

ButtercreamIcing Wed 17-Aug-16 20:49:51

In the example I saw this evening (a large group of mixed adult and baby seagulls on a patch of grass) the boy was walking with his mum and started running towards the birds whilst screaming. He changed the direction he was going in specifically to terrorise the birds, diverting from his original course.

She was pushing an empty pushchair, didn't shout after him and just allowed it to happen.

DoinItFine Wed 17-Aug-16 20:50:42

LOL @ Fred/Rose grin

One of mine loved doing this when she was a toddler.

Repeated explanations that the birds were flying off like thst because they were scared of her did the trick eventually.

Before that the death stare had to suffice.

ButtercreamIcing Wed 17-Aug-16 20:51:13

Might be worth putting a disclaimer in: if a child has SEN then obviously it's a different kettle of fish. And no, I don't know if this particular child had SEN.

Sandsnake Wed 17-Aug-16 20:51:43


Magicpaintbrush Wed 17-Aug-16 20:53:05

Totally agree OP. It's a rotten thing to do to birds and animals, parents should tell their kids off if they chase them.

kali110 Wed 17-Aug-16 20:53:25

Agree with you op.
birds don't seem to matter and are fair game where i am hmm
Pisses me off.

paddypants13 Wed 17-Aug-16 20:53:53

YANBU. Dd started to do this. It was swiftly stopped.

As pp have previously said cruelty to animals is a precursor to cruelty to people.

paddypants13 Wed 17-Aug-16 20:54:17

YANBU. Dd started to do this. It was swiftly stopped.

As pp have previously said cruelty to animals is a precursor to cruelty to people.

ChardonnayKnickertonSmythe Wed 17-Aug-16 20:56:06

A little shit once screamed at my dog to scare him. Just like that.

I'm convinced he'll end up a serial killer. The boy that is, not my lovely dog.

ColdTeaAgain Wed 17-Aug-16 20:57:15

It depends. Throwing stones, chasing birds just for the sake of it or any sort of cruelty is definitely not on. Chasing off a seagull because it's after your chips is more like self defence wink

But in all seriousness, I totally agree that children who aren't taught kindness towards living creatures are more likely to end being mean to other children and even bullies. It's a really important stage in child development to understand cause and effect and empathy. If parents do not instill these ideas early on then that is a huge failing on their part imo.

LabRats Wed 17-Aug-16 20:59:30

I live for the day a seagull (or preferably flock of) turns the tables and starts chasing an offending kid.

WaitrosePigeon Wed 17-Aug-16 21:00:32


edwinbear Wed 17-Aug-16 21:03:20

YANBU mine are taught not to chase pigeons, go quietly to squirrels they are feeding nuts to and to kindly put the grasshopper back outside.

lightgreenglass Wed 17-Aug-16 21:11:20

DS roared at a seagull like a dinosaur yesterday and I didn't stop him, nor do I stop him chasing pigeons, but after reading this I will. I hadn't thought of it the way posters have expressed it on here. There will be one less child roaring at seagulls from now on.

gemma19846 Wed 17-Aug-16 21:13:12

I agree, i dont let my kids chase pigeons. Not only is it cruel but its bloody annoying when kids chase them and a flock of pigeons comes flying towards you!

roseteapot101 Wed 17-Aug-16 21:19:58

i know it seems odd but i have always taught my daughter to apologise to the cats if shes been mean to them as they are members of the family.I believe teaching her treating things that are smaller and are unable to speak back kindly is the right thing to do.

when we go out in public i tell her thats mean if she chases the birds if someone was mean to her she would be very sad

i like her to be aware of feelings

i do teach her that if a seagull is trying to steal our lunch then its in the wrong and therefore naughty.You are only allowed to scare them off if they are in the wrong

so far shes showing kindness to other animals and will happily treat our cats with kindness

i do see a problem with children being let off the leash just recently a punch and judy operator in weymouth said hes retiring because parents simply refuse to discipline their children when they are naughty .

If they are not told to stop throwing stones who will they throw them at next were is the line

notagainnellie Wed 17-Aug-16 21:20:32

It's cruel to the birds and often anti-social when it results in bird or birds flapping their way in panic towards other people. I hate to see it, especially when parents watch complacently, or worse, encourage it.

ThatGingerOne Wed 17-Aug-16 21:22:02

When I was little I did this and a pigeon flew up and hit me in the face, I never did it again! grin

Yeah, its not great if they're not bothering anyone or you have a kid going out of their way to run right through them. What really irritates me is when you go to petshops and kids are knocking and banging on the glass!

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