Sunday, November 25, 2007


An article in this morning's paper talks about a "new" phenomena in child rearing; no diapers on infants. Families that follow this practice routinely hold their infants over a bowl or potty chair and make a "suush" sound. The baby will usually respond by eliminating on cue.

Hmmm. Sounds a lot like the method we use to teach Helping Paws puppies to go when and where we want them to go.

I expect the article will get a lot of feedback about the sanitation (sanity?) of the parents following this method. But(t) the method makes sense. It's always easier to train a new skill than to try an untrain an old habit. As the article mentioned, it seems counterintuitive to teach a kid to go in their diaper then at some arbitrary age, tell them they can't do that anymore. Some kids can and do, balk at the change.

When Molly was a wee one, her red hair and fair skin made her prone to skin rashes. Diaper rash was the worst. At times, the only thing I could do was hold her under the tub spout to rinse off her little behind. Wiping was just too painful. At nine months she had a bout with diarrhea that was so bad the skin on her little cheeks would bleed with each bowel movement. Soon, she started to fuss before she had to go. Desperate to help her, I trained myself to listen and watch for her cues and she was totally trained by age 1. But more importantly, her little bottom healed for the first time in her life.

I hope the method described in the article catches on. Our infants deserve not having to sit in their own waste. Like puppies, their elimination schedules are very predictable - when something goes in, something else comes out. If we adults can train ourselves to pay attention to a puppy, how hard is it to anticipate the eliminate of a human child? Trust me, it won't be a long wait - despite what Carole King had to say about it.

No comments: