Pets and Kids: Benefits of Having a Furry Friend at Home

Often parents wonder about having both pets and kids under the same roof. Many are said about the dangers of having a pet animal close to a baby or child, but when done right, there are a lot of benefits of bringing these two together. Nowadays, is more and more common to hear experts approve or even recommend the presence of a pet in our kids' life.

Some parents swear on the improvement in their child's life since they welcomed a furry animal into their families. Here are some of the different benefits found when welcoming a furry pal home:

Pets Help With Learning

We all have heard about animal-assisted therapy for children with learning disabilities, and it's not a myth! Psychologists have found that every child can benefit from the company of a furry pal and it can be part of the innovative treatment known as "child-centered therapy." Kids feel more comfortable reading and discovering new things around their pets than they do with other people.

Comfort from a real friend

On a study where a doctor asked a group of 5-year-old pet owners what they did whenever they felt angry, sad, or afraid, more than 40% of the kids mentioned turning to their pets. Pets reduce anxiety and encourage children to be less withdrawn. Also, animals help children making more friends, having something to talk about to others and sharing their interest with other kids.

Raise caregivers!

Nurturing animals is important for kids, mostly for boys (taking care of an animal is not a "girl" thing like babysitting or playing with dolls), because experts believe that good parenting "seeds" can be planted this way during early stages. Caring for their pets can help them grow into wonderful adults with great nurturing abilities.

Better health!

It is said that kids exposed to animals at home are less likely to get allergies or get sick. They are many reasons experts believe that animals can help protect children from at least some illnesses.

According to a study by Dennis Ownby, MD, a pediatrician and head of the allergy and immunology department of the Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, having multiple pets decreases a child's risk of developing certain allergies. His research tracked a group of 474 babies from birth to about age 7. He found that the children who were exposed to two or more dogs or cats as babies were half as likely to develop common allergies as kids who had no pets in the home. Children's immune systems grow stronger whenever they play with their beloved pet!

Unbreakable bond

One of the biggest benefits of having pets is that they help families grow stronger and closer! Activities involving their pets like taking the dog for a walk, playing, or even feeding it, often promote spending time together as a family. Also, pets help bring families together to worry, care, or have a laugh over their furry member's latest feat.

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