Friday, July 13, 2012

Is it Okay to Use Leashes for Kids?

Are Child Harnesses Cute or Cruel?
In the past I've seen parents and caregivers use harnesses with their children in public. When used properly the harnesses are actually cute. When I've seen the harnesses used it never appeared as if the adult was walking the child like a dog. The harness was loose, the harness looks like a backpack , and both child and adult seem happy and fine. I thought it was a brilliant way to ensure a caregiver and child will not get separate in a busy public setting.

But, while picking up a nanny friend at the airport last week I saw a child harness being used in a terrible fashion. The parent was pulling the harness more like a leash.

If used properly I think harnesses can help ensure no separation of caregiver and child. Part of the benefit of using a child harness may be that it allows the caregiver to keep their hand free while still keeping children safe. But after seeing the insensitive use of a child harness as a leash at the airport I would have to say holding hands or simply using a stroller the more appropriate way to keep track of kids.

What do you think?


Anonymous said...

When my own son was a toddler, and we would walk in a mall, etc., he didn't always want to hold my hand, so I did get a harness, and he loved it! I never pulled it. It was just our way of staying connected. I would say that if there is ever a situation when you feel the need to "pull" the child, you should probably be picking them up, or putting them in a stroller, because they are not cooperating anyway, and what are you going to do? Drag them around on the floor? I don't think so. It may mean it's time to leave the place, and regroup. Obviously, if you have a plane to catch, you can't leave, but you should have a backup plan for the harness.

Anonymous said...

One place I thought it was a particularly great idea: the Grand Canyon. Those parents looked very, very smart to me.

Anonymous said...

Yes I agree if used right they are very helpful