Could Your Child be Lured by a Stranger With a Puppy?

This post is brought to you by our Brie Brie Blooms contributor Kristen.

Would your child talk to a stranger? I don’t know about you, but I speak to my children about “stranger danger” all the timeā€“not every day, but quite frequently. I don’t want them to be anti-social freakazoids, so we have a simple rule: If I am standing close enough for you to touch me, you may speak to whomever you like. But if I’m not within arms reach, you must ask me before you speak to anyone you don’t know. Still, I wonder. Would my kids come to me if a stranger approached them? What if there was a temptation? I can think of no greater temptation than a puppy.

stranger-with-a- puppy

Have you seen Joey Salads’ “social experiment” where he lures children away in about a nanosecond by engaging them with a puppy. It’s been circulating lately, and he’s done some other versions of it, but the puppy version just blows me away.

luring children: a stranger with a puppy

Salads approaches parents who are watching their children play in a park and asks their permission to talk to their children as a “social experiment.” They all tell him that their children won’t talk to him.

All of the children talk to him.

What’s worse? Within a few seconds, they happily take him by the hand and walk away from their mothers with the promise of seeing more puppies like the one he has.

talking to your kids

After watching the video the first time a few weeks ago, I knew in my gut that my children would have gone with him, too. I’d like to think they wouldn’t. But they would. Since I am a pet sitter, my kids can’t resist anything animal. And Salads was super nice and cool. Hell, I may have gone with him, myself.

As scary as it is, I showed my kids (ages eight and six) again and again, as well as the other versions of Salads’ social experiments. Though I don’t think anything could be as irresistible to them as a puppy, I’ve talked to them about all types of ways strangers might try to tempt them. And I reinforce the rule: If I’m within reach, would it be okay to talk to this guy? “Yes, mommy.” And if I’m across the park sitting on a bench, talking to another mom? (because, really, do we watch our kids every SECOND?) “No…we’d come ask you first.”

But these moms were caught off guard. They were utterly shocked. I think this has to be an ongoing conversation, and I think it’s important to show our kids videos like this. I would actually like to hire someone to come to my next park playdate and see which kids they could lure. Would mine go?

Would yours?

Is your kid safe?

Footage/photo source:


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