Having a baby or small child does not mean you cannot have a dog. There are in fact a good number of dog breeds that are especially friendly to babies and small children. If you are the parent, you can add a dog to your family as long as you select the right breed and follow a few basic safety rules.

Dog Breeds for You, Your Babies and Small Children

The first thing you have got to know about dogs and babies will probably seem to be very counterintuitive to you; don’t go small. Toy and miniature dog breeds are delicate and quicker to scare than larger breeds, and you want a dog that is comfortable with itself when it is around your children. After all, a frightened dog is one that is not to be trusted.

A good rule of thumb when choosing a dog to join a family with small kids is to go no smaller than 25 pounds. Generally speaking, dogs of this size are robust enough to be around small humans. Some of the 25-plus-pound breeds that are especially good with children are all hounds, Leonbergers, retrievers, Labradors, Newfoundland dogs, and mastiffs.

Safety Rules for Babies, Small Children, and Dogs

The most important safety rule for you to follow is to never leave children and babies alone with a dog, any dog.

Secondly, you need to make sure that your dog is trained to come, sit, drop it and so forth so that it is accustomed to listening to you. Just teaching your dog these basic commands will go a long way towards keeping the relationship between your children and your dog.

Next, you have got to remember that kids are kids, and they will pull ears, slap, and poke dogs from time to time. Make sure you teach your children to treat dogs as they ought to be treated.