KIDS: Kids Interacting with Dogs Safely™

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In many cases, children and dogs are the best of friends. But according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 3.5 million children are bitten by dogs each year, and most victims are under the age of 9. Sadly, kids 7 years old and younger are 66 percent more likely to experience severe injuries to the face, head and neck, which makes sense considering smaller children's height and proximity to dogs' heads.

Adding to this problem is the fact that the vast majority of dog-bite prevention programs are geared toward children ages 8 and up. Thus, the age group most in need is least served.

A Curriculum That Teaches Empathy, Not Fear

American Humane's KIDS™ includes classroom curricula as well as an instructional and entertaining children's DVD created by the award-winning humane education filmmaker Erik Friedl.

Our breakthrough KIDS™ is designed to:

  • Effectively address the dog-bite issues facing our nation.
  • Target children who are 4 to 7 years old and most at risk.
  • Meet national education standards on many levels.
  • Meet the "character lesson" standards that are part of the national mandate for schools.
  • Teach younger children how to be safe around all dogs -- including their own dogs, friends' and family members' dogs, and dogs in the neighborhood -- without contributing to or instilling fear.
  • Use children's natural affection for pets to foster empathy, which in turn will teach children to avoid potentially dangerous situations.

The answer is not to frighten children, but rather to teach them consideration for dogs' feelings in certain situations. For example, a KIDS™ teacher might ask, "How do you think Fluffy feels when Haiden is pulling on his tail?" This approach will tap into children's instinctual sense of empathy in a way that's easy for them to grasp at a young age.

American Humane Association believes that the results of the KIDS™ project will be a reduction in the number of dog-bite injuries and emotional scars affecting children; lower medical costs and fewer insurance claims associated with dog bites; and a decrease in the number of dogs euthanized for biting children who may have unknowingly provoked them.

Launched in 2009, KIDS™ is being made available to teachers, humane educators, parents and many others.


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American Humane KIDS: Kids Interacting
with Dogs Safely™

The American Humane KIDS Curriculum Set includes lesson plans, games, activities, worksheets, songs, a 12-minute live-action DVD, and an educational coloring book. The curriculum meets national standards of education and incorporates character education. A great tool for teachers, humane educators, parents, animal shelters and veterinarians.

Order it today on Amazon