Most Dogs Do Not Like Hugs Plus Other Communication and Bite Prevention Facts

Dogs are known as man’s best friend for a reason. They are great companions, emotional support, working dogs and much more. They deserve a kiss, hug and a pat on the head right?  Wrong. Most dogs don’t like hugs, kisses, or pats on the head according to animal behaviorists. There are some 70 million great dogs and any dog can bite.

Every year, almost 5 million people are bitten by dogs and most of those bitten are children. Strange dogs are not the most common offenders, 77% of bites come from a family or friend’s dog!

Preventing dog bites is everyone’s responsibility. Simple measures can be very effective. Being aware of the risk and active supervision is important. For example, a calm and gentle dog surprised or startled can react uncharacteristically if a toddler crawls up and kisses a sleeping dog. 10440678_796489223779881_6550008399635534847_nIt is obvious a child poking or pulling a dog tail or ear could provoke a bite. Animal behaviorists find dogs guarding resources including food, toys, or even its owner is the cause for most bites.

Many animal organizations and adoption centers offer fun classes on safe interaction with animals to prevent bites. For example, in Saint Louis the APA Adoption Center (Animal Protective Association of Missouri) offers a variety of classes for kids and adults. You can learn the ways dogs and cats communicate, the proper way to approach a dog and what to do if approached by a stray animal.

11025160_807130716029148_5874756013793407181_nYou can attend a class at the APA Adoption Center or instructors and trained pets can come to you. To check out some of the programs and classes available to all age groups check out the APA website or follow this link: http://www.apamo.org/education/group-programs/group-programs-list/

If you are outside the Saint Louis area, check with local adoption agencies or visit https://www.avma.org for more information on dog bite prevention.
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A Smart Spring Break Stay-Cation Idea: Fun With Furry Friends at APA Adoption Center

ttttttumblr_n2r4gqdeib1r3zbhoo3_1280Spring break may prompt thoughts of a beach getaway or an exotic trip but family fun and adventures don’t have to include travel. A “stay-cation” in Saint Louis is filled with wonderful possibilities.

One creative and fun option is the Animal Protective Association of Missouri or APA. The APA Adoption Center offers many choices of activities and interactive sessions for kids of all ages.

Parents often get together and plan a joint outing for several families during spring break. This is easily done because the options at APA‘s Adoption Center are customizable and cost effective. There are a variety of classes about animal care, safety, center tours, pet related crafts and interaction with animals mixed with fun and games.

Not all lessons during spring break take place at the Adoption Center. For some youngsters, anticipation of the animal adventure begins days before as they join forces to collect supplies to help homeless pets. These collection efforts can take on the air of a scavenger hunt involving extended family and neighbors. It is a great opportunity to share the joy of volunteering and practice the lesson of selflessness with children. There is a wish list of easy to find items for homeless pets on the APA website.

APA Director of Humane Education Jennifer Blome works with educators and volunteers to deliver fun and meaningful opportunities; “It is more than learning to love and play with animals in the right way. We have a curriculum of age appropriate lessons and activities to engage minds and hearts.”

It doesn’t have to be spring break to take a class. The APA offers birthday parties and other special events customizable for your group. Some of the party details can be found here. 

The APA works year around to educate on the importance of treating each other and animals with compassion and respect. APA presentations are held in the community along with group classes for scout, school and community groups. You can see a list of some program options by clicking here or on the website: http://www.apamo.org/education/group-programs/group-programs-list/

You can sign up for a public class as an individual adult, or bring your child to a family event. For information on upcoming classes and programs through community organizations, email jennifer@apamo.org.

Scheduling a class or event at the APA Adoption Center can be such a rewarding and unforgettable experience; it may become a favorite family tradition. Remember to bring a camera to capture the learning and play of your APA day.

Personalize your visit to the APA of MO for fun, crafts, safety, and more!

Personalize your visit to the APA of MO for fun, crafts, safety, and more!

Be a Party Animal at APA Adoption Center

 

10 reasons to host your party at nonprofit APA 

There can be a lot of expense and pressure in planning a birthday party that will be memorable and fun. Whether you’re 3 or 93, children and adults agree having a party at the Animal Protective Association of Missouri is a tail-wagging good time!

11025160_807130716029148_5874756013793407181_n1. Your big day at the APA of Missouri can be customized and personalized for the guest of honor. There are choices of fun classes, crafts, and your celebration can include a VIP shelter tour with animal petting, time for celebrating with games for the guest of honor and up to 15 friends.

2. Birthday parties at the APA include balloons, streamers, and goodie bags. Plus APA staff and volunteers clean before and after the party so you don’t have to.

pup_kiss_StockSnap_HMOI9OUX4J3. You don’t have to worry about where party guests will park that will not irritate your neighbors. There is plenty of free parking for guests at the centrally located APA.

4. Worried about how and where to put up the bouncy castle you are going to need to rent? There are no inflatables to blow away in a gust of wind except for the helium balloons decorating the special APA party room.

5. An APA party is affordable. The fee of $250 covers the party room, decorations, favors and activities. The money goes to help the homeless animals at the adoption center. You can make your own cake, food and drink making the party even easier on the budget.

6. You don’t have to be in charge of food. There are many restaurant delivery options surrounding the APA. Whether your party animals prefer pizza, sandwiches, or even ribs and sushi you can have it delivered to your APA birthday bash.FB_IMG_1449114000840

7. Very easy to skip the gift dilemma. There can be angst over gift registries for parties; but you really don’t want another board game or pool toy. With an APA party, you can ask guests to bring something for homeless animals in lieu of a gift for you or your child. The APA has a wish list of easy to find items to help the pets waiting for adoption. It is a great way to teach and practice selflessness.

8. No need to be concerned space to accommodate excited children and adults in your home if the weather prevents you from accessing outdoor space for your bash. The APA party room is “kid proof” and comfortable 365 days a year. Plus you don’t have to do a major house clean before party day!

9. An APA party includes invitations. You have a choice of free printable invitations for your bash and there are also APA Wish List inserts if guests wish to donate to help homeless animals.11390326_844980078930795_2036857226601795217_n

10. Finally, many people love animals and it is a memorable venue that offers a treasure of experiences. The APA makes it so easy and affordable you can do more than birthday parties–go all out with Halloween, Christmas, Hanukkah, end-of-school and end-of-summer parties! No matter the celebration or age of the honoree; the APA staff and volunteers are ready to make it a memorable day. Party planning starts with an email to communityprograms@apamo.org for more information.

Parties with adorable animals are fun and teach lessons too