Top 5 Reasons Why Kids and Dogs Go So Well Together
Children love dogs and vice versa. Both species are kind, playful and friendly. Many kids will ask their parents for a pet dog at some point and it is natural for them to hesitate. First of all, pets are a big responsibility. They also need training and proper care. Most kids on the other hand like the idea of having a pet but don’t like taking care of them. If you’re a parent that’s still on the fence, there are actually benefits to having pets at home.
For instance, young children who grow up with dogs at home have a lower risk of developing asthma. Kids with pets also spend more time outside and pet owners enjoy fewer visits to the doctor. Here are other reasons why dogs and kids go so well together.
It can be hard to be a kid especially if you’re an only child. You don’t have a lot of playmates and you’re often alone playing by yourself. Sure, mom and dad are there but they are also busy with work and household chores. A pet on the other hand can give you constant companionship. The best indoor dogs can help your child feel less lonely.
Aside from companionship, pets can also be a source of comfort for children. When they feel stressed, sad or afraid, they can turn to their dogs for comfort. According to “America’s Veterinarian” Dr. Marty Becker, pets such as dogs can help increase production of prolactin and oxytocin; also known as the feel-good hormones. These hormones lower blood pressure and reduce stress. Having a pet dog can also boost production of serotonin and dopamine, hormones that prevent depression.
2. Fresh Air
No matter what the size, your dog will need physical exercise. This means they have to play outside and take regular walks. Spending time outside with pets can help kids avoid obesity. Dogs like spending time outdoors. They want to run, play and socialize with other dogs. Dogs are a good excuse to get kids out of the house to get some exercise and sunshine. You can ask your kids to walk the dog every day so that both of them get exercise.
According to doctors, a 30-minute walk can do wonders to the body. Dog walking will not only keep your child healthy but responsible too. A dog could be the cure for the console-loving son or social media obsessed daughter or the couch-potato husband.
Dogs don’t ask much. They need food, water and attention and you get unconditional love in return. However, dogs also need proper care so that they have long enjoyable lives. Entrusting these responsibilities in young children can help them come to terms with more serious responsibilities in life at an early age. If you are able to instill the importance duty to your young children at a young age and make them understand how serious they are, you are instilling a lifelong value that will make them into better adults.
Even something as easy as making sure that the dog has adequate water every day can give your child an early glimpse of obligation and accountability. The responsibility of having a pet can also help them develop higher self-esteem by seeing that their care has a big impact on their pet’s survival.
4. Compassion and Empathy
Compassion and empathy develop connections between people. Kids with pets can learn this because they develop a bond with their dogs. Kids that take care of their pets are more aware not only of their responsibility but also on the impact they have on their pets. For example, not playing with their dog can make them miss each other. Bonds make us mindful about how the other party feels and how we affect their feelings. By making them conscious of how another being could feel because they acted a certain way, they will become more aware of their actions and impact on other people or society.
Aside from this, kids also learn to show kindness not only to dogs but to humans and other animals too. Simple acts of kindness to dogs like letting them rest or giving them a treat for a job well done can translate to bigger actions when they are adults.
5. Happy Kids
Kids that have dogs are not only healthier, they are also happier. Dogs can help lower your stress levels, blood pressure and even blood sugar levels. But aside from this, dogs help us to produce endorphins or “happy hormones”. Studies also show that people who have dogs recover faster after an illness.
Another way dogs make them happy is by being social. Not only is the dog your child’s best friend but it also helps them socialize with other kids. Dogs can attract other kids when your child plays with them outside and as they say, the more the merrier. In other words, dogs can help your child make friends more easily.
There are many studies that show how dog ownership is good for the physical and emotional wellbeing of kids. They can confide all their secrets to their dogs because their pet won’t judge them and will always listen. Some say this is the same as having siblings or friends. However, siblings and friends can talk back and can respond in a hostile manner. Dogs simply listen and know to empathize by instinct.
Dogs can teach children responsibility. They are responsible for the life and health of this majestic creature. The responsibility can be daunting especially for young children but teaching them this value at a young age can help them become stronger and more independent adults. Anybody who has adopted or owned a dog can tell you how wonderful the canine-human relationship is. Dogs can have a big impact on our lives no matter how old we are. They give companionship, comfort and can help to physically heal us. All science aside, dogs are fun, they help us interact with other people and can brighten your kid’s day.
Anna Smith resides in beautiful Santa Monica, CA, where she works as a Pet Nutrition Expert in a leading retail pet store. She is responsible for nutritional strategies for different breeds and development of new products on the market in compliance with Association of American Feed Control Officials. Anna’s passions are education about proven methods and best practices in the industry and her dog Max, who is always well-fed.
You can find Anna Smith here on Pawbly!