Having a pet isn’t just a lot of fun and a forever friendship for a child, it can also teach them a lot of valuable life lessons. Pet ownership helps your child learn more about responsibility, compassion, respect, trust, and patience. And, owning a pet has many benefits for kids. In fact, children with pets often have better self-esteem, get better grades at school, and better health than their peers without an animal at home.
If your child has been asking for a pet for some time, you might be wondering whether or not giving in and getting them their own furry friend is going to be worth it. Bear in mind that while young children can learn a lot from having a pet, they should not be expected to care for it all by themselves, so you need to be willing to commit to getting a family pet yourself. We’ve put together some of the most valuable life lessons that children can learn from having a pet at home.
Having a pet teaches children all about responsibility. Having an animal that relies on them to be fed, let out for the toilet, kept clean, comfortable and safe is an important lesson that they will carry with them all the way to adulthood. Children can quickly learn what needs to be done to keep their pets safe and happy on a daily basis, and they will also learn from a good example of proper pet care that you set them as the parent.
In addition, you can use your pet to teach your child about how the financial responsibilities of pet ownership. Responsible pet owners get insurance cover for their pets as this may provide some financial support in the event of the pet becoming sick or getting injured. While your child knows that they need to look after your pet and look out for his safety, you should also consider a policy for cat insurance as well. You can compare cat insurance quotes at Everypaw to find the right option for your feline friend. Everypaw offers Lifetime Cover and Maximum Benefit for cats. Choose the level of cover that best suits your needs and budget.
Kids and their pets often become best friends. It’s easy to tell your pet about anything as you know that they are never going to judge you; they offer their unconditional love and support in return. Many pets can pick up on when a child is feeling down or upset and show that they care by giving extra attention to the child or snuggling up with them when they can sense that it’s needed. Pets make the best trustworthy companions for kids and can help your little one build trust and be a supportive friend in their human relationships, too.
Properly caring for a pet requires understanding, compassion, and empathy. Children must quickly learn how to understand what a pet needs, even though they don’t speak the same language. This can help them learn more about nonverbal cues and help them understand the importance of being compassionate and empathetic towards others, even when it might be difficult for them to communicate. Through pet ownership, kids learn more about being kind and putting others first.
Pets love us unconditionally. You can tell anything to your pet and they are still going to think that you are the best human. Your dog is still going to be happy to see your child even if they didn’t do all too well on a test at school, and a cat will still purr and snuggle up next to them if they’ve had a bad day. Pets show unconditional love no matter what, which can really improve a child’s self-esteem – as can the sense of satisfaction that comes with knowing that your pet has a happy, comfortable and safe life because you take pet ownership seriously and ensure that their needs are met.
Having a pet at home teaches children how to be more respectful to the needs of others. Pets are often not shy of telling a child off if they feel that they are being disrespected and in turn, a pet who is treated with respect and feels safe in their environment will reward your child with a loyal, supportive friendship. Your child must learn to only pet their companion when it’s OK with them, to touch them gently, make sure that their needs are met, and to give them the space that they need when they are eating, sleeping or resting.
Owning certain pets can help teach your child to get into good habits with exercise. Children who have a dog at home, for example, will learn how much fun staying active can be when they go for walks with their dog every day and play games with them like tug-of-war and fetch. Research has found that children who have a family dog tend to spend more time being physically active than children who do not have a dog at home.
Owning a pet can teach your child a lot about patience. Often, bonding with a new pet is going to take time, and you need to give the animal space and time to get used to their new surroundings, settle in and form relationships with their humans. If it’s rushed, your pet might become scared or anxious. Throughout this process, your child is going to learn the importance of having patience with others and allowing them to take things at their own pace.
Having a family pet can do wonders for your child’s social skills. Taking a dog for walks as a family, for example, is always going to open you up to new social experiences as undoubtedly, you might meet other people walking with their dog, or people who want to come and say hello to your pet. But any pet can help your child with socializing; a cat, rabbit or even a hamster can become a topic of conversation at school and something in common with other kids who also have pets at home.
If you’re thinking of getting a pet for your child, there are many valuable life lessons that your little one can learn from pet ownership.
Disclosure: This is a featured post.