Owning a pet is a beautiful thing, especially if you are a child, but how do pets help our children’s development?
Short answer: They help kids learn empathy, responsibility, and how to be cooperative.
Long answer: Research has shown that children are more likely to develop empathy for others if they have some type of animal companion during their childhood. Responsibility is one of the most important skills kids need to build in order to grow up healthy, happy adults.
They can learn responsibility by taking care of an animal or by learning that keeping a pet isn’t just about giving it food and water but also improving its health care. Cooperative skills are also helpful for kids’ future success in life. Children who have pets are more likely to be part of the peer group that helps them build a sense of belonging in a community.
Another effect pet ownership can have on children is to help them be enthusiastic about school and learn the importance of education. Research shows that children who live with pets have more positive attitudes towards schools and show a greater interest in schoolwork than children without pets.
Children with pets are also more likely to eat three nutritious meals a day. They are also capable of better self-monitoring their own behavior, which is important for good mental health.
Finally, there is the benefit of increased bonding time between parents and children. Though most children view their parent’s furry friend as part of the family, there is still the benefit in having a pet in order to be an animal in need which is an attachment that lasts long after childhood.