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  1. #1

    7 year old with alot of attitude

    my 7 year old was fine intell about 3 years ago she starting coming up with these major attitudes, if i asked her to do something she would have a major fit about it so we recently got her a dog that she wanted on one condition she did good in school and would take care of her feed her and let her out for the bathroom she was fine in the beginning but now she has attitude to do am i asking to much from her.

  2. #2
    Hello Rebeccamommyof2,

    You are definitely not asking too much of your 7 year old. My 7 year old picks up after the dog (picks up the poo), feeds her, gives her water, and plays with her (runs her, throws the ball, etc. to give her exercise). This was a condition my husband made when we got the dog. The children would need to care for the dog in all respects or the dog would go back.

    I think that the crux of the problem may be that your daughter started getting an attitude and throwing fits when she was about 4 years old, and that poor behavior was not corrected at that time. If this is how she normally responds when being asked to do something she doesn't want to do, then you can absolutely expect that she will do the same thing if asked to care for the dog, and she doesn't want to.

    As you witnessed, when you first got the dog your daughter was fine caring for her. But after the "newness" wore off, it became a "chore" and it's apparent that she chooses to display a bad attitude when she doesn't want to do something that she should.

    So here's what I would suggest. You need to curb the poor behavior in all areas, and not focus on the bad attitude being connected to the responsibilities with the dog. This is a bigger issue than the dog.

    You can use the dog responsibilities to start training her to respond with a happy face whenever you give her direction, but don't focus only on the dog (i.e. don't say "We got you the dog you wanted because you agreed to take care of it. Now you need do do what you said you would do." That will only breed resentment in her because she will possibly think that she would rather not have the dog then have to care for it. Instead, you use individual chores to train her which might look something like this.

    You ask her, kindly, to feed the dog.

    She either ignores you or responds with a bad attitude and possibly throwing a fit.

    You correct the poor behavior. If she just gets a bad attitude, or roles her eyes or does anything other than replying promptly with a good attitude, you can say, "I won't let you respond that way. You need to say, "Yes Mum, right away mum." and then you need to go and do what I asked you to do. Now go and get the dog's food and poor it in her bowl."

    Just doing this, in a stern, loving voice may catch her off guard if she's not used to you taking control of the situation.

    If she refuses, but has not yet thrown a tantrum, you can take her hand and guide her to the dog food and "help" her to do it. This is typically done with 3 year olds when these kinds of attitudes and tantrums start to surface, but it can definitely be done with a 7 year old who needs an "attitude adjustment".

    If she then throws herself on the ground and throws a tantrum, you can take her to her room and tell her that she can come out when she has a smile on her face and is ready to feed the dog.

    When she comes out, be sure you guide her to feed the dog right away and then say "Thank you for feeding the dog." The praise comes when she does the job the way you want, which is right away with a good attitude.

    You will need to be consistent in correcting the poor behavior every single time it surfaces. If you notice that she has a bad attitude after watching TV, then you take TV away for awhile. If it's after playing with a friend, you take that away for awhile. She will earn the fun things by responding prompty and with a good attitude when asked to do things.

    If your daughter is not being asked to pick up after the dog (pooh) you can also ADD this chore to her list. She is capable of doing it. But I would suggest correcting the attitude problem first, and then adding the "pick up" chore just in case she gets upset and wants to throw it. That wouldn't be a good thing.

    Your daughter is also capable of helping out in the kitchen (preparing food), doing the dishes, setting the table, picking up after herself (and others) and a lot more. If you take a good week to consistently work on correcting the attitude and responding properly you'll have a different child on your hands a week from now. It takes work to train a child and often times parents just don't know what to do or how to do it.

    Please let me know if this information has been helpful and post back when you've tried some things. Also post back if you want any specific ideas on how to handle a situation. We're here to help.

    Warm regards,

    Kate

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