TV presenter Chris Packham says getting close to animals should be essential to growing up

Children should be 'stung, slimed, slithered on and scratched' by animals, says TV wildlife presenter

Children should be 'stung, slimed, slithered on and scratched' by animals, says TV wildlife presenter

First published in News

Hamsphire wildlife presenter Chris Packham has spoken out against parents who stop their children interacting with nature, adding: ''They have got to be stung, slimed, slithered on and scratched.''

The Springwatch host, from Southampton, said allowing youngsters to get up close with wildlife should be an essential part of growing up but they are made to feel fear by adults who stop them climbing trees or insist on them using anti-bacterial gel after touching animals.

The naturalist, 53, told The Times he recalled being licked by a giraffe on a visit to a zoo as a child and being ordered to wash his hands and face by his mother.

''I had been licked by a giraffe! I didn't want to wash it off,'' he said.

He added that he has since allowed hand-reared wolves to lick him ''many times''.

''Wolves' mouths are packed with bacteria which are perfect for healing,'' he added.

He went on: ''This whole process is alien to children because they want to pick it up and touch it. The feel of worms, the feel of a caterpillar inching up their finger, the marvel of a ladybird gyrating round that finger and getting to the top of it turning this way and that and then taking flight; that's the stuff of magic. What are you going to do? Wash their hands with gel?

''When you ask a child to open their hands and you squirt that liquid and say, 'Rub that in,' you are saying, 'You are in a dirty and dangerous place.' And when you say to them not to climb the tree because you might fall out and hurt yourself, you are instigating fear in that child.

''Parents are to blame. Clearly we can't blame kids. They are born with the same innate curiosity that all of us were, but parents have pulled back from allowing their kids to engage with it.''

Packham narrates Wildlife Jack on the Disney Junior channel from Monday.

Comments (20)

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1:06pm Sat 12 Jul 14

issacchunt says...

Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money.

a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na!
Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money. a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na! issacchunt
  • Score: -22

1:24pm Sat 12 Jul 14

eurogordi says...

Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem.

I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays.

Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people.

We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!!
Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem. I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays. Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people. We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!! eurogordi
  • Score: 12

1:49pm Sat 12 Jul 14

IronLady2010 says...

Not sure why Chris is picking on the parents when most are following the advice of health experts.

No wonder the kids are so confused these days, Chris is saying one thing and the parents saying another.
Not sure why Chris is picking on the parents when most are following the advice of health experts. No wonder the kids are so confused these days, Chris is saying one thing and the parents saying another. IronLady2010
  • Score: 0

1:57pm Sat 12 Jul 14

shirlski says...

I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris?
I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris? shirlski
  • Score: 0

2:22pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Turtlebay says...

Another potential child hurter / molester! Echo, pull this article, it's gross!
Another potential child hurter / molester! Echo, pull this article, it's gross! Turtlebay
  • Score: -22

2:38pm Sat 12 Jul 14

issacchunt says...

shirlski wrote:
I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris?
Depends really if he washed afterwards, hopefully Chris Packam will clarify? Does Packham know that his dog goes out doing this? How did your mate know it was Packhams dog? This has raised so many more points?
[quote][p][bold]shirlski[/bold] wrote: I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris?[/p][/quote]Depends really if he washed afterwards, hopefully Chris Packam will clarify? Does Packham know that his dog goes out doing this? How did your mate know it was Packhams dog? This has raised so many more points? issacchunt
  • Score: 0

2:52pm Sat 12 Jul 14

huckit P says...

Quite agree with him. Nothing like getting wet feet and covered in mud trying to catch frogs, minnows or sticklebacks. I was fortunate enough to have been brought up in the countryside, so had the pleasure of seeing calves and lambs being born, playing with cats and dogs and generally having a good time. Antiseptic gel hadn't been thought of let alone used by the gallon. If Dettol or Germoline didn't fix it a bread poultice usually did the trick. My mothers refrain was always "go outside and play, don't come back until tea time and don't get you feet wet".
Quite agree with him. Nothing like getting wet feet and covered in mud trying to catch frogs, minnows or sticklebacks. I was fortunate enough to have been brought up in the countryside, so had the pleasure of seeing calves and lambs being born, playing with cats and dogs and generally having a good time. Antiseptic gel hadn't been thought of let alone used by the gallon. If Dettol or Germoline didn't fix it a bread poultice usually did the trick. My mothers refrain was always "go outside and play, don't come back until tea time and don't get you feet wet". huckit P
  • Score: 13

3:17pm Sat 12 Jul 14

burgerboy says...

issacchunt wrote:
shirlski wrote:
I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris?
Depends really if he washed afterwards, hopefully Chris Packam will clarify? Does Packham know that his dog goes out doing this? How did your mate know it was Packhams dog? This has raised so many more points?
would not have happened if his dog had a muzzle on........
[quote][p][bold]issacchunt[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]shirlski[/bold] wrote: I've got a mate who reckons he got sucked off by his dog,does that count Chris?[/p][/quote]Depends really if he washed afterwards, hopefully Chris Packam will clarify? Does Packham know that his dog goes out doing this? How did your mate know it was Packhams dog? This has raised so many more points?[/p][/quote]would not have happened if his dog had a muzzle on........ burgerboy
  • Score: 2

3:25pm Sat 12 Jul 14

shirlski says...

I had expected someone to doubt the 'It was my mate,not me' part!..I must say that Mr Packhams dog has never been romantically linked to my friend in any way. Just in case Chris's ego get's the better of him and he reads these comments.
I had expected someone to doubt the 'It was my mate,not me' part!..I must say that Mr Packhams dog has never been romantically linked to my friend in any way. Just in case Chris's ego get's the better of him and he reads these comments. shirlski
  • Score: 1

3:53pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Major Ray Cist says...

This bloke is mental, last month he was moaning about kids charities getting to much money and we should be looking after animals in the wild.
If I want to see a lion I go to the zoo you daft t&*t ! stop assuming that everyone in this country is an animal lover or come from a comfortable middle class background like yoyrself and can fly off to Africa to look at a couple of lesser spotted mongoose shagging., Most animals are actually pointless, apart from dogs for fighting, horses for working in pits and cows for milk and stuff, the rest are a waste of oxygen.

Im off to eat swan.
This bloke is mental, last month he was moaning about kids charities getting to much money and we should be looking after animals in the wild. If I want to see a lion I go to the zoo you daft t&*t ! stop assuming that everyone in this country is an animal lover or come from a comfortable middle class background like yoyrself and can fly off to Africa to look at a couple of lesser spotted mongoose shagging., Most animals are actually pointless, apart from dogs for fighting, horses for working in pits and cows for milk and stuff, the rest are a waste of oxygen. Im off to eat swan. Major Ray Cist
  • Score: -6

4:02pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Graeme Harrison says...

eurogordi wrote:
Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem.

I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays.

Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people.

We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!!
My staffie, Satan, regularly eats kids and you don't hear them complaining about it. Having your face chewed off by a pitbull or a cheetah is character-forming and it's about time it was introduced into schools.
[quote][p][bold]eurogordi[/bold] wrote: Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem. I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays. Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people. We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!![/p][/quote]My staffie, Satan, regularly eats kids and you don't hear them complaining about it. Having your face chewed off by a pitbull or a cheetah is character-forming and it's about time it was introduced into schools. Graeme Harrison
  • Score: -5

6:13pm Sat 12 Jul 14

acid drop says...

Chris Packham is a complete and utter pillock
Chris Packham is a complete and utter pillock acid drop
  • Score: -5

6:50pm Sat 12 Jul 14

eurogordi says...

There are some people making comments who definitely need to come into contact with animals so that they can calm down!
There are some people making comments who definitely need to come into contact with animals so that they can calm down! eurogordi
  • Score: 0

7:01pm Sat 12 Jul 14

mickey01 says...

issacchunt wrote:
Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money.

a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na!
too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts
personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves
[quote][p][bold]issacchunt[/bold] wrote: Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money. a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na![/p][/quote]too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves mickey01
  • Score: -2

8:04pm Sat 12 Jul 14

forest hump says...

Packham has serious problems. Needs to keep his twisted ideas to himself.
Packham has serious problems. Needs to keep his twisted ideas to himself. forest hump
  • Score: -3

9:24pm Sat 12 Jul 14

issacchunt says...

shirlski wrote:
I had expected someone to doubt the 'It was my mate,not me' part!..I must say that Mr Packhams dog has never been romantically linked to my friend in any way. Just in case Chris's ego get's the better of him and he reads these comments.
We all knew it was you really..........
[quote][p][bold]shirlski[/bold] wrote: I had expected someone to doubt the 'It was my mate,not me' part!..I must say that Mr Packhams dog has never been romantically linked to my friend in any way. Just in case Chris's ego get's the better of him and he reads these comments.[/p][/quote]We all knew it was you really.......... issacchunt
  • Score: 1

11:51pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Balsamic says...

Major Ray Cist wrote:
This bloke is mental, last month he was moaning about kids charities getting to much money and we should be looking after animals in the wild.
If I want to see a lion I go to the zoo you daft t&*t ! stop assuming that everyone in this country is an animal lover or come from a comfortable middle class background like yoyrself and can fly off to Africa to look at a couple of lesser spotted mongoose shagging., Most animals are actually pointless, apart from dogs for fighting, horses for working in pits and cows for milk and stuff, the rest are a waste of oxygen.

Im off to eat swan.
Evening Major
[quote][p][bold]Major Ray Cist[/bold] wrote: This bloke is mental, last month he was moaning about kids charities getting to much money and we should be looking after animals in the wild. If I want to see a lion I go to the zoo you daft t&*t ! stop assuming that everyone in this country is an animal lover or come from a comfortable middle class background like yoyrself and can fly off to Africa to look at a couple of lesser spotted mongoose shagging., Most animals are actually pointless, apart from dogs for fighting, horses for working in pits and cows for milk and stuff, the rest are a waste of oxygen. Im off to eat swan.[/p][/quote]Evening Major Balsamic
  • Score: 0

2:33am Sun 13 Jul 14

Ginger_cyclist says...

Graeme Harrison wrote:
eurogordi wrote:
Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem.

I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays.

Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people.

We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!!
My staffie, Satan, regularly eats kids and you don't hear them complaining about it. Having your face chewed off by a pitbull or a cheetah is character-forming and it's about time it was introduced into schools.
Dogs are only aggressive if they're bred/trained to be that way, also, Cheetahs have been known to make great house pets, even if kids are around, I remember when I was a kid, I was often scratched or bitten by things and you're just as likely to gain an infection from a human bite as you would be if you got bitten by a Komodo Dragon.
[quote][p][bold]Graeme Harrison[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]eurogordi[/bold] wrote: Although I do not particularly like Chris Packham, on this particular issue I wholeheartedly agree. Children (and adults) should all have regular interaction with animals and, putting wolf saliva aside, animal contact is proven to aid depression and raise self-esteem. I grew up on a farm, so animals have always been part of my life. I went to a primary school where there were rabbits and guinea pigs that the pupils were taught to look after and the teachers took home to look after during school holidays. Now animals are rarely seen in school due to the associated health and safety risks which, in my experience, have been drawn up by so-called experts who know very little about animal behaviour or the positive effect animals can have on people. We need to be more adventurous when it comes to giving positive experiences to the younger generation. And it that means getting scratched, cut, stung or even bitten then so be it. Theoretically I should have died many times during my childhood just for being inquisitive!![/p][/quote]My staffie, Satan, regularly eats kids and you don't hear them complaining about it. Having your face chewed off by a pitbull or a cheetah is character-forming and it's about time it was introduced into schools.[/p][/quote]Dogs are only aggressive if they're bred/trained to be that way, also, Cheetahs have been known to make great house pets, even if kids are around, I remember when I was a kid, I was often scratched or bitten by things and you're just as likely to gain an infection from a human bite as you would be if you got bitten by a Komodo Dragon. Ginger_cyclist
  • Score: 0

7:40am Sun 13 Jul 14

Charlie Bucket says...

mickey01 wrote:
issacchunt wrote:
Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money.

a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na!
too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts
personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves
Heaven forbid someone should wish to pay off their debts, eh.
[quote][p][bold]mickey01[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]issacchunt[/bold] wrote: Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money. a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na![/p][/quote]too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves[/p][/quote]Heaven forbid someone should wish to pay off their debts, eh. Charlie Bucket
  • Score: 0

11:33am Sun 13 Jul 14

IronLady2010 says...

Charlie Bucket wrote:
mickey01 wrote:
issacchunt wrote:
Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money.

a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na!
too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts
personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves
Heaven forbid someone should wish to pay off their debts, eh.
They should carry them for life !! lol
[quote][p][bold]Charlie Bucket[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]mickey01[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]issacchunt[/bold] wrote: Make your mind up you berk,; you also want us to stop having kids. He's a smug self publicist and these sound buts are purely to keep him in the press' s minds eye so ss to make money. a dangerous idiot who should be ignored. Next time I get licked by a wolf I'm going to still wash it off. Nan nanah nan na![/p][/quote]too right he went bankrupt a few years ago and now he keeps spilling this crap just to keep his name in the papers maybe to pay his debts personally i would like to see the kids get closer to their parents and other kids and the animals can look after themselves[/p][/quote]Heaven forbid someone should wish to pay off their debts, eh.[/p][/quote]They should carry them for life !! lol IronLady2010
  • Score: -1

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