“Leashing” your Child

in Babies,Kids,Parenting

*Photo credited to Lesa Rhoton’s triplets at the zoo

There is so much controversy about “leashing” your child in public places.  Some think it’s treating your child like an animal or that you’re a lazy parent that doesn’t keep track of your kids.  I personally have only used it once with one of my children while in the airport, but I think they can be very useful in busy places.  I’m not talking about your local grocery store or really even the mall, but I would be more likely to use them in a huge place that is full of people like an amusement park or something of that nature.

My youngest is 16 months and has gotten to the stage of being very independent, wanting to walk everywhere instead of staying in the cart or stroller.  I’ve seen for myself how within seconds she can disappear and that is pretty scary! Does that make me a neglectful parent if I lose my child when I turn my back for 5 seconds to look at something?  No!  It happens to everyone, whether you want to admit it or not.

How about the parents that have multiples or daycare teachers taking the children out for a field trip?  I can only imagine trying to keep track of multiple toddlers running in every direction when you’re out in busy public places.  Isn’t it better to have the “leashes” than to expect a parent, especially one that is out alone with no one else to help, to keep track of multiple small toddlers?

By the age of 2 or 3, children should start realizing the importance of staying by parents, but up until that point, they have no idea that running off can be harmful for them, so to me, using leashes occasionally is ok.  It’s really not much different than holding their hand, but they will most likely enjoy it more than having to hold your hand because it gives them a little more walking room.  It’s not treating them like an animal because you are not putting a collar on them aronund their neck.  You’re simply giving a little walking room attached to their cute backpack.

What do you think?  Have you ever used the “leash” or would you consider using one in certain places?  If you’re “pro-leashing”, do you think they should be stopped being used by a certain age?


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Lesa Rhoton August 14, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Those are my triplets who were 18 months old when that picture was taken. Not seen in the picture was my three-year-old son who was very busy at that time. That is a picture from my copyrighted website. I don’t mind that you’re using my picture as long as you give credit to the picture and refrain from speaking out in a derogatory fashion regarding my choice of keeping my 18-month-old triplets safe while giving them the chance to experience the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida. I read your blog entry and we seem to be on the same page. Thank you for your respect. There’s a reason you don’t see many triplet toddlers. Many parents are afraid to give their children the experience of being out in public. I chose to give my children experiences in different places weekly. As a result they are intelligent, well behaved, well-rounded older children. They’re eight years old now.

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