Fun activities with kids

A pet’s role in your child’s development

Nisha Joshi
Written by Nisha Joshi
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Pets are absolute cutie pies – all cuddly and playful. If you love pets, you might know that having a pet is very good for people. Pets bring a lot of positivity in a home. And come on, who has the heart of scolding them when they look at you out of their melting eyes?

Children are the same, too. They can do all the naughtiness in the world, and if we say a word, out come the puppy eyes.

Did you know that pets are actually very good playmates for children? In general, children love animals because they know no fear. And a cuddly dog or a cat or even a frisky goldfish could be a really good companion for a young child. If you are a pet lover and a parent, you could really consider bringing home a pet. There are several benefits of this:

Pets help in child development

A child that grows up with a pet is more responsible than those growing without. Such children have a high rate of development of social and emotional quotient. Taking care of pets, especially big pets like dogs, takes away a lot of time from your day. You could teach your child to shoulder some of the responsibilities, so that you can relax a bit. In general, it is seen that children who take responsibility of their pets are also responsible towards other aspects of their lives, like homework and studies. However, it is very important to discuss what you would like your child to do before you bring home a pet. The work should be such that a child should be able to manage it alone, rather than with you. It only leads to the child offloading the work on to you entirely! (Children are very clever like that!)

Pets help develop reading skills

Believe it or not, pets are very good reading companions for children. Some schools abroad have facilities for children to bring in their dogs during reading practice. Children find it easier to read out to a pet (or even a stuffed animal) than to other kids, parents or teachers. Plus, a pet doesn’t interrupt! Negative side effects are: child might start playing with pet and abandon reading completely, or pet might run away with book! (Dogs are very notorious for this!)

Pets encourage physical activities

If you are really worried about your child becoming a couch potato (TV and mobile on the loop), you could seriously consider bringing home a pet. A pet usually needs to be taken out daily, and you can let your child do it. In short, pets are a way of getting your child outdoors and playing in fresh air without fuss!

Pets can be used for therapy

In some cases, when young children face a traumatic experience like an accident or losing a close one, psychiatrists suggest parents or caregivers to adopt a pet as a therapy and for the child. Pets are wonderful comforters. Children also tend to talk to pets about their deepest feelings than to others. Pets help in healing and become a solid pillar of support for the child.

Pets and children with autism

Research has proved that children in the autism spectrum are benefitted tremendously by pets. You could actually get dogs specially trained to cater to children with autism. Pets help these children develop their social skills. In fact, pets are helpful for developing social skills in all children.

If you have a child and were wondering whether to get a pet or not, this article might make you decide. Pets do take a lot of work, but if you, as a family, are acceptable to that, bringing a pet home might just be the best choice you make!

Do you have a pet at home? Any tips on how you manage both child and pet? Please do share them with us!

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About the author

Nisha Joshi

Nisha Joshi

Homemaker, new mother, true punekar, bookworm, blogger, photographer, budding chef, music enthusiast, likes to keep her fingers in many pies!

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