Whenever your children have visited a zoo or met people who own pets, they must have requested you to bring home a pet. This is not an unusual scenario. Most children are fascinated by pets and see them as a playing companions.

If you have been thinking “Should I get a pet for my child?” , then here are some wonderful benefits of owning a pet for your children’s well-being:

  1. Develop Compassion

Pets need the same love, care and attention as human beings. They become your family members. Pet care helps them to develop compassion towards others. They will be able to understand others’ needs instead of focusing on their wants.

  1. Learn Responsibility

Make sure to allocate pet duties to your children. They can do pet-related chores such as feeding, bathing, brushing, grooming, taking for a walk, etc.  This will make them realise the value of responsibility and understand how each family member contributes to running the household in some way or another.

  1. Get Companionship

Pets make great friends. Your children can play with or talk to them for hours. If your child doesn’t have siblings or close friends, a pet can provide unconditional love. A pet will also teach your child how to build a relationship with others.

  1. Stay Away from Screen Time

A pet member in the family is one of the best ways to draw your children’s attention away from digital gadgets. It will take their mind off social media, shows, videos and games for some time.

  1. Provide Therapeutic Benefits

Research has shown time and again that animal-assisted therapy can provide physical and emotional health benefits for humans. So, if your child has anxiety, behavioural issues, autism, learning disabilities or some other health issues, a pet can work wonders in their healing process.

  1. Boost Physical Activity

A pet needs to be taken outdoors for a walk or exercise. A pet runs around a lot. A pet can play games. All these pet activities can promote physical activities in your children and boost their fitness levels.

  1. Help Deal with Negative Emotions

If your child is dealing with the absence, separation or death of a loved one, a pet can help them cope with sadness, anger, disappointment and other negative emotions. Similarly, when the pet falls sick or dies, your children can understand that this is also a part of the natural cycle.

Before you adopt a pet, talk to your child about this matter. Let them know a pet comes with responsibility and they will need to contribute their bit to pet care. Take your children to pet shelters and rescues so that they are involved in adoption and bond better when the pet comes home.

About Sneha Malhotra

Sneha is a mother of a teen son, and formerly an HR consultant, who is currently considering getting to the back to the workforce. She occasionally writes on HR topics and also on parenting issues - she also hopes to have her own blog soon!

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