I grew up in a household where pets were not permitted. I always longed for a pet growing up. As soon as I hit college, I bought myself a dog and cat. Not the wisest decisions I’ve made in my life.
Now, I am not saying my parents scarred me or that I am any less of a person because I grew up pet free, but I do see many positive benefits in my children from growing up in a home with many pets.
I don’t suggest you go overboard like I have in the pet department, but having a family pet will reap rewards in your home.
The 9 Reasons Every Child Needs a Pet
- Increases Childhood Responsibility. Children realize that they are responsible for providing the needs of others and not just themselves. It also helps them to live their lives not just for themselves, but all their actions affect others. If they go to bed late, than the animal still needs providing for early in the morning. This is real life.
- Increase in Activity and Movement. Pet owners are more likely to go outside and be more active than non-pet owners. My children love to take the dogs for a walk and tend to play with the animals each time they take them outside for a potty break. Ball and fetch is always a work out for my children.
- Trains in Time Management. Children are required to keep some sort of schedule. Often they will make up their own schedule around the needs of the animals. The animals need to eat a couple of times per day.
- Experiences Death. This is one of the hardest part of being a pet owner. I have consoled my children on many occasions when we have lost a pet. I just remember when my Grandpa died, I had never experienced any sort of death before. It was really hard for me. My children know the Lord gives and takes away. However, it still breaks my heart when my children are heart-broken over a loss of a pet.
- Provides Companionship. There is nothing sweeter than watching my children snuggle with a dog while reading or watching a movie. Dogs are truly a man’s best friend and miniature dairy goats come in second.
- Exposure to the Birds and Bees. All I am going to say is that you will have many questions to answer after your children witness first hand their pet giving birth. In fact, I think I gave the whole neighborhood a biology lesson when one of our does gave birth to triplets. It’s truly amazing to me how God prepares these animals for birth and how they know exactly how to care for them.
- Builds Self Esteem. The children are aware that their pet depends on them to survive. This builds self-worth.
- Tends to Lower Blood Pressure. Children’s blood pressure tends to be lower due to the excess activity that takes place when they take care and play with the pet.
- Less Risk of Developing Allergies. Children being exposed to animal dandruff are less likely to develop allergies as an adult especially if brought up in a pet friendly home in the early years of life.
If you are on the fence about getting a pet for your child, please take into consideration that you must be prepared to train your children on how to be responsible for the pet. We carefully have taught our children the expectation of the responsibility for caring for a pet. Now of course, you can’t expect an infant to take care of a family pet, but when they are young, they can give the pet water or some oth simple task.
I have a rule that I don’t budge on…..If you have a pet and you don’t care of it properly, it will go on Craigslist and to a home that will. It sounds harsh, but I’ve only had to do it once. Trust me, the whole family learned that lesson. Mommy is serious about the Craigslist deal. I don’t mind pets, but I don’t want to take care of them. The ball is in their court. Take responsibility and all is good.
Now before you send me hate mail about the Craigslist deal, my children were ages 9 and 10, so they were able to care for the pet themselves.
I would love to hear if you agree with me on my 9 Reasons on why every child needs a pet.
Yay or Nay?
Don’t forget to sign up for our weekly newsletter and grab the big list of FREEbies you will recieve instantly!