PARENTS

Is Your Child Safe? Parents Horrified At YouTube Kidnapping Social Experiment

05/05/2015 16:21 BST | Updated 05/05/2015 21:59 BST

One of the biggest lessons you teach your child is to never talk to strangers, but do they actually pay attention?

A social experiment by YouTuber Joey Salads has caused a storm after he managed to persuade three young children to walk away with him out of a park to see more puppies.

Joey has a gorgeous white puppy in hand and explains the experiment to the parents. He asks them: "How often do you tell your kid not to talk to strangers?"

child abduction

The majority of parents confidently say they tell their child a lot. Joey then asks for permission to talk to their children and all three mums agree.

What they weren't expecting, was the power of the puppy.

All the children in the experiment happily talk to Joey, and say 'yes' when he asks them if they want to go and see more puppies.

child abduction

The parents watch as their child walks out of the park, hand-in-hand with a complete stranger.

The social experiment on YouTube has already had nearly three million views, with many expressing their shock at what happens and encouraging people to share.

One commenter on the channel said: "Oh my goodness! Sometimes we think our kids will remember what we have taught them and it only takes a second for them to forget it. This is something! And it is quite scary."

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And many others agree: "This is such an important video. It prompted me to talk to my kids, and it was frightening the response I got from my 5 year old - who also thought that a stranger was someone whose name you don't know, so if they tell you their name they are no longer a stranger."

"700 children are abducted a day? That is so heartbreaking... I'm lost for words."

Others have expressed sincere thanks to the YouTuber: "Thank you. This is really sobering. If you have a child, it's worth watching it. What you think your kid will do and what they will do might not always match up."

At the end of the video, Joey says that over 700 children are abducted every single day. Which begs the question: how do we make sure our kids really understand the lessons we're teaching them?

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