2/21/2018

The Benefits of Adding a Pet to Your Family



Has your child been pestering you for a family dog? Do you feel like you are starting to give in? Adding a fluffy friend to the family may be more beneficial than you realise. Growing up with a family pet is something that can help children in many different ways. So, let’s take a look at the benefits in further detail…

Pets can be very therapeutic for children – There have been a number of studies that have shown that pets can reduce anxiety and stress, speed up recovery time, and lower blood pressure. If your child suffers from autism or any other type of disorder, this can be especially beneficial. You can find more information about this at this support animal site. Children sense that the animal is unconditional in their affection and love, and this can really help a child to feel at ease.

Animals help children to increase their verbal skills and socialise – You have probably seen that children like to chatter away with pets, even those who are still learning to talk. Pets give kids emotional and social support, as well as cognitive language skill support. The presence of a pet alone can provide verbal stimulus, which will help your kid to practice socialising and talking with others.

A pet can teach responsibility and confidence – The responsibility of caring for a dog, cat or any other type of pet, can give your child confidence. Children that are as young as three-years-old can manage simple tasks, for example, filling the pet’s food and water balls. Once they get older, they can walk their pet and groom it. This teaches children a level of responsibility, which is very important, and once they carry out these tasks, they will feel more and more confident.

A pet can teach empathy – Empathy is another lesson that your child will learn by caring for an animal that is completely dependent on it. Your child will start to read the pet’s needs. Does the animal need to go outside? Perhaps he or she is hungry? Your child will start to think of others and become more in tune with other people’s emotions. Empathy is one skill that cannot be taught; it needs to come naturally, and a pet can bring this process about.

Pets give unconditional love – Yes, you give your children unconditional love, but you are also the person that gives them rules and tells them off when they misbehave. A pet doesn’t do any of this. A pet gives unconditional love in a different way, which can be especially beneficial for any child that experiences emotional distress, has a rivalry with their sibling, doesn’t have any brothers or sisters, or feels lonely. Pets never judge and they will listen to a child’s troubles without consequence. Your pet will become your child’s best friend and their partner in life. It can be adorable to watch their relationship blossom.

Kids with pets play outside more – Another benefit to consider is the fact that your new pet is going to get your child outside more. In a day and age whereby children seem to spend most of their time in front of the television or playing on their games console, it can be incredibly difficult to get them outside. However, a bit of fresh air and some exercise is important for any child, and a pet can ensure they get plenty of this.

A few other benefits to consider – There are many other reasons why a family pet is a good idea. The mere act of cuddling a pet can reduce anxiety, loneliness and stress. Sharing the care and love of a family pet can also bring about a common bond between siblings, bringing them closer together. Children with animals also display improved self-esteem, social skills, and impulse control. Emerging readers can often feel more confident reading in front of their pet, and so it is no exaggeration to say that pets can help children academically.

As you can see, there are many reasons why a family pet is a good idea. Of course, a new cat or dog will turn your life upside down in so many different ways. But you will soon find that the good will completely outweigh the bad.

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