Should You Get a Pet for Your Child?

Many of us have have fond memories of the pets we had as children. However, most parents these days have less time to spend with their kids than our moms and dads did. Many families are also in the midst of a financial squeeze, thanks to a lessened economy and stagnant wages. Consequently, difficult decisions are sometimes necessary when it comes to what can be purchased.

Most children love the idea of a pet, while many adults don’t love the cost of vet and food bills. Wondering whether you should get a pet for your child? Here are some reasons why it is actually a good idea:

Exercise

While this usually won’t work with cats, dogs help to ensure that kids get outside and exercise, either through playing with or walking the dog.

Responsibility

Parents often struggle to instill a sense of responsibility in their children. Your kids may not care about the lawn, but they do care about the dog, so that provides motivation for them to regularly feed and care for it.

Reduced Anxiety

Is your child frequently anxious? Studies show that children with pets tend to be less stressed, as well as less lonely.

Increased Self-Esteem

Children who successfully raise pets, particularly ones that are popular and admired, experience an increase in self-esteem.

Fewer Allergies

Exposure to pet dander can be problematic for some people. However, studies have shown that children exposed to this sort of allergen at a very young age develop stronger immune systems. Consequently, they are less likely to have problems with allergies later in life.

Discipline

Helping to raise and train pets can help children know the importance of discipline. Kids come to understand that cats and dogs cannot be allowed to behave just any way they want; that lesson carries over to humans as well.