Happy Valentine’s Day!

From all of us at Kidproof Lower Mainland, here’s wishing everyone a HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

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Dog Handling Safety Tips

Even the most sweet-natured dog can be provoked into biting or attacking.  Here are some important things to remember when you see a dog.

Dogs are more likely to bite when:

  • Poorly trained, socialized and maintained.
  • Scared.
  • When overly excited.
  • When they have puppies.
  • When sleeping.

Always remember “W. A. G. S.:”

  • WaitWait for an adult before approaching a strange dog.
  • Ask Ask the owner’s permission before petting a dog.  If the owner says it’s ok, make sure you have nothing in your hands.  Make a fist, palm down (so your fingers are out of the way if the dog nips). If the dog comes forward with it’s tail wagging, it’s okay to pet it.
  • Gentle – Be Gentle when petting or playing with a dog.  DO NOT yank tails or feet, pull their fur or poke their eyes. DO NOT jump or scream at a dog.  Never sneak up from behind, ALWAYS approach from the side or front. Never run up to a dog, even one you know.  Avoid rough games like tug-of-war, wrestling or chase the kid. Playing fetch or obedience games with your dog is better.
  • Slow – Move Slowly when meeting and petting a dog.


Here are a few more tips to remember:

  • Don’t hug, kiss or put your face down close to a dog’s face. Keep your face away from a dog’s teeth. Even if it doesn’t want to nip you it could hurt you accidentally.
  • Dogs do like being gently stroked on the back or the side. Pat under the chin, back, chest or shoulders and remember to be gentle.  Avoid the top of the head. They might think you are trying to hurt them.
  • When meeting a dog let it sniff the back of your hand. Dogs use their sense of smell to get to know strangers. Using the back of your hand keeps your fingers out of the way. Let the dog come up to you and sniff – don’t push your hand under the dog’s nose. Do not stare him in the eye, some dogs may be threatened by this.
  • Leave sleeping or eating dogs alone. They’ll likely snap at you if bothered.  Dogs might think you want to take  their food if you try to pat them. They want to protect their food.
  • Never hang over fences or put your hands through fence openings to touch a dog.
  • Leave a mother and pups be – she may become protective. Mother dogs are naturally protective and may growl or snap at you to protect their puppies. Puppies don’t like being picked up.
  • Never approach a dog that is acting afraid or one that is growling or showing teeth.
  • If approached by a dog you don’t know, stand still. If you are on a bike, stop, put the bike down and stand still.  If the dog threatens you, avoid eye contact, hold a rolled up jacket or book bag in front of you and back away slowly. Never scream, run or ride away, this may encourage the dog to chase you. If the dog attacks, roll up like a ball and put your hands behind your neck.

SOURCES

1)      http://safekidssafedogs.com/

2)      http://www.dogsafety.govt.nz/dogsafety.nsf/wpg_url/kids-dog-safety-tips-for-kids-index!opendocument

3)      http://www.parenting.com/article/kids-and-dogs-safety-tips

New Years Resolutions…

New Years resAh yes…the dreaded New Years Resolution. How many of you still make them? I know lots of people who have stopped making them because they just end up failing.

Well don’t fret. While you can’t wave a magic wand and make your resolution come true, there are some easy steps to take that will make it easier to fulfill your promise to yourself.

  • Choose an attainable goal. If weight loss is your “promise to yourself” then don’t focus on the amount of weight you want to lose, but instead promising to include daily physical activity in our life daily is very possible. Don’t try to become that perfect version of yourself out of the gate, you will only end up disappointed. Baby steps to start.
  • Avoid choosing a resolution that you’ve been unsuccessful at achieving year after year. Now I know we have all done this before! So try something new this year. However…if you are still tempted to make a promise that you’ve made before, then try altering it.
    For example…a simple change like “i promise to change my eating habits and include some exercise weekly.” See how that might be less daunting than “I will lose 40 lbs this year!”
  • Create a plan of attack! Just like every successful business has a business plan, you should have a Personal Plan. Write your own personal plan and you’ll be more likely to succeed as well.
  • Give it time: most experts agree that it takes about 21 days to create a habit and six months for it to actually become a part of your daily life.
  • Reward yourself! If you have successfully stuck with your Personal Plan and promise to yourself for 2 months, treat yourself! Now…use caution…if weight loss is your goal, then a burger or dessert is probably not the best treat. So instead, treat yourself with a massage, manicure, pedicure etc.
  • Don’t go it alone. No matter what your goal sometimes we just need some help. Everyone needs help and sometimes a friend just isn’t enough. Sometimes you need the help of a trained professional. Don’t feel that seeking help is a way of copping out.
  • Keep a journal: A journal helps you recognize your positive steps and makes it harder to go back to the same old habits.

On average only about 20% of us keep our New Year’s resolutions. But don’t let the statistics get you down. By following the tips above you’ll be better equipped to fall into the successful 20% category.

Good luck!

Source: menshealth.about.com

Boxing Day Shopping Safety

Boxing Day is the day after Christmas and gives people the chance to take part in the post-Christmas sales or watch ice hockey games.  Some shoppers start their Boxing Day waiting outside stores in the wee hours of the morning and stores open earlier than usual to accommodate eager shoppers.

Crowds are greater at this time and children may easily become separated from their parents. Parents need a plan and children should know what to do in case they are separated. For smaller children, the plan should be to remain in the area where they become separated and wait for their parent to come to them.  For older children, the plan could be having a pre-designated spot to meet and having the parents cell phone number on speed dial.  Prior to a busy day like Boxing Day, practicing the plan is a good idea so that everyone will know what to do if something does happen.

Tips for Children:

  • Be with your parents at all times while shopping. Always go with your parents when going to public facilities, like restrooms.
  • Always travel with proper identification and contact information for your parent or guardian.
  • Never wear clothes with your first or last name prominently displayed, to avoid unwelcome attention from people looking for an opportunity to talk with you.
  • Always ask your parents before going off to look at something or with someone, and before accepting any unrequested “gifts” from  strangers.
  • Even if you’re old enough to shop alone, go with a friend, since it’s more fun and much safer. Agree on a clear plan with your parents on:  where you are going, what time you plan to come home, and what to do in case of a change in plans.

Tips for Parents:

  • Teach children to look for properly identified people of authority who can help, such as: a uniformed security officer, a salesperson or a mother with children.
  • Never expect supervision from store personnel in toy stores, the video arcade and similar public facilities.
  • Find out whether the malls you are going to have procedures to search for a missing child.
  • Always be extra careful when using shopping carts. Shopping carts can tip over easily because the wheel base is narrow. Young children should sit in the seat, not the basket.
  • Be very careful around stairs, escalators, and elevators. Injuries occur when groups of people are moving quickly.
  • Avoid darkened hallways and other backroom areas inside a mall especially near closing time.
  • Make frequent trips to your car to stash packages in the trunk so your hands stay free to hold your children. Take time to relax and visit shops that your child is interested in.  You will reduce the chance they will wander away if you spend some time letting them do things they want to do.

Remember these tips so that you can have a safe and enjoyable shopping experience!

Shopping Cart Safety

Christmas is just around the corner and EVERYBODY is now busy with their shopping.  Are you still picking up last minute gifts?  Do you have your grocery list ready with your baking and Christmas dinner needs? Before you start shopping, please do be careful if you are using a Shopping Cart. Do you know that many kids end up in the hospital each year after they had fallen — or even jumped — from shopping carts? According to the National Safe Kids Campaign, children 5 years old and younger are especially at risk.

Kids have a hard time sitting still. Shopping carts can tip over easily because they are unstable due to their narrow wheel base. Kids can fall out of, get trapped in, get run over by, and get struck by shopping carts.

The best way to keep children safe in a shopping cart is for them to sit still in the shopping cart as much as possible (no horsing around).  Just wiggling out of the harness or seat belt can quickly unbalance an already unstable load. Please take note of these safety tips:

  • Parents should always supervise a child when they are in a shopping cart.  Never leave a child unattended in a shopping cart, even for just a few seconds. This is especially important if you have more than one child with you.
  • If possible, wipe down the cart with anti-bacterial wipes.
  • If available, use a shopping cart that is designed for young children, including larger, special models that have separate seats for kids or use carts that are low to the ground. If available, use shopping carts that have a wheeled child carrier that is permanently attached and made part of the shopping cart.
  • Give older children their own list of things to get to keep them busy while you shop and taking care of the shopping cart. You could paste pictures of the items on their list for non readers.
  • After shopping, if possible have your children help you bring your purchases to your car rather than using the shopping cart in the parking lot.  Many accidents happen with shopping carts in the parking lot because of uneven ground.
  • It’s not a good idea to let kids push or steer the cart for you. He may not see or be seen by shoppers and could be struck by other carts.
  • Kids should sit in the shopping cart seat, and NOT in the main basket, which is not meant for children. If the children are old enough,  encourage them to walk rather than letting them sit in the basket.
  • If the cart comes equipped with a harness, use it. Otherwise, bring your own.  Make sure your child’s legs are placed through the leg openings.
  • NEVER let children stand up in, ride in the front basket, or ride on the outside of the shopping cart.
  • NEVER have more than one child riding in one shopping cart.  If you have more than one child that are too small to be walking, bring an extra stroller or infant carrier for them.  Never place your infant carrier on top of the shopping cart.
  • Make sure your children keep their fingers  away from the wheels where they can get pinched.

Always keep these in mind and happy shopping!