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Will a parents understanding of a dogs body language impact the safety of adults and children whilst around dogs?

(16 Posts)
jessbarry95 Wed 16-Nov-16 12:49:01

For the attention of parents which have primary school aged children.
Hello all, for my dissertation I am looking into the understanding of a dog’s body language. The purpose of this study is to identify whether parents of primary children are able to understand a dog’s body language and whether this can impact the safety of both adults and children around dogs. I would really appreciate you taking 5 – 10 minutes of your valued time to conduct this questionnaire for me. Both parents can answer this survey. All information will be deleted after the study. Thank-you in advance!
Link below x

steppemum Wed 16-Nov-16 13:03:47

family members have dogs, so I answered no to owning, but we are around familiar dogs regularly, and sometimes dog sit them. I think an alternative to yes and no if you have a dog or not might give a more nuanced response.

Also, all the questions about would you stroke this dog - no, yes, only if my dog etc. There is a ctegory missing, which is yes if I know the dog well.

Catinthecorner Wed 16-Nov-16 13:16:32

Interesting concept. Before I was allowed to raise guide dogs I had to do a short course with a huge focus on body language. Now when I watch YouTube clips of 'cute kids and dog play together' I'm often horrified that the placid dog is exhibiting ever possible stress sign and it's completely ignored. I always think - one day hat dog will snap and the adults will say there was no warning. But there's the warning.

Rumtopf Wed 16-Nov-16 13:19:52

I agree with steppemum there ought to be another category for "I know this dog well", also, my daughter is 14 but your age category only goes up to 11.
You could perhaps have another question such as, "how long have you owned a dog?" An experienced dog owner will be more adept at understanding a dog's body language and expression.

jessbarry95 Wed 16-Nov-16 13:26:34

Thank-you steppemum i will add some more into it smile Thats amazing Catinthecorner, i feel more people should have more awareness of body language of dogs. Rumtopf, i am focusing just on primary school children as it is a follow on project from another dissertation!! Thank-you everyone for your feedback

AuntieStella Wed 16-Nov-16 13:34:19

"also, my daughter is 14 but your age category only goes up to 11"

That because, as it says in the opening post, it's a survey for parents of primary children

steppemum Wed 16-Nov-16 13:34:24

yes - my eldest is 14, so the question about how many children and their ages won't match up, as I couldn't fill the eldest in. Just so you know why!

AuntieStella Wed 16-Nov-16 13:35:56

Sorry, slow typing x-post!

KidFears Wed 16-Nov-16 13:40:37

Now I'm curious which dogs were ok to stroke! Obviously I wouldn't stroke any of them if I didn't know them but if it were my dog I would scratch the tummy of the one lying on its back and depending on the dog I might stroke the one licking its paw. I know there are some constants about dog body language but the dogs I have had have all been very different from one another in terms of what type and how much human attention they want or will tolerate in various situations.

I also think the lab vs staffie question is a bit obvious. Yes most people will pick lab but that doesn't mean we are all misinformed. There are lots of reasons behind which dog someone would choose to have in their home.

jessbarry95 Wed 16-Nov-16 13:44:54

Kid fears, all pics were taken from the blue cross website, if you have a look on there it will show you body language of dogs which may be useful for yourself and your children smile
The lab vs staffie question was used as yes the majority will say Lab, i am uisng it to identify the medias perception of a staffie not being a family dog!

paddypants13 Wed 16-Nov-16 13:47:55

I didn't like the lab/ Staffie question either. I would personally have either breed.

I answered Yes sometimes to stroking the dogs in what I considered "a friendly position" because I would usually never stroke anyone else's dog without asking first. Also, it would depend on the context. The one with its belly in air could be rolling in fox poo for example. In that case I wouldn't go near the dog!

steppemum Wed 16-Nov-16 14:00:44

Can I also say, that I teach my kids to NEVER touch a dog without asking/checking with owner. So they may well stroke the one with her tummy up, but only after asking first, or if they knew the dog well.

I think it is more important to learn not to touch without asking, than to learn body language.

Rumtopf Wed 16-Nov-16 14:04:02

Oh I missed that in the post as it wasn't in the title. Ah well, feel free to discount my entry.

GinIsIn Wed 16-Nov-16 14:04:23

I haven't filled out the survey as I haven't got primary DC, but the lab/staff question is a bit heavy handed - you might get a more balanced response by also adding a small breed in as an option?

jessbarry95 Wed 16-Nov-16 14:07:50

Thanks everyone for your feedback. Everyones opinion is absolutely fine and is appreciated. Body language is what my dissertation is based on, as i said its a follow on project. All parents are going to have different opinions and beliefs over different topics. My mum and dad would check with dog owners aswell to see whether a child is able to stroke a dog, however some dogs can be completely unsure around new people and may display different body languages as a form of stress or aggressiveness so i believe that having knowledge about this is crucial aswell.

OldTownNew Wed 16-Nov-16 14:30:28

All done. Didn't like the lab/staffs question. I answered lab because I do prefer them but not because of any perceived image of staffies being bad, I just would rather have a lab than a small dog like a staff.i think a better question would have been which breed do you think suits a family more with lab/staffy/both, that way you won't get skewed results based purely on people's preferences. I actually have a Rottweiler grin

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