Dogs make the perfect addition to your little family. Not only do they guard the home, they are also the perfect companion to your children. The best part is that children too love dogs, as they find them cute and cuddly and friendly. However, having children grow up with dogs actually has a lot of benefits to your kid’s physical and psychological development.
Advantages of Having Children Grow Up with Dogs
Having a pet can help with providing a constant companion for your child. Dogs are usually a great source of comfort for children, even as they face life with some difficulties. Whenever kids feel sad, angry, or afraid, they can always turn to their pets for comfort. Petting and cuddling dogs actually relieve some of their stress and helps them relax better.
Dogs also encourage a more active lifestyle. In fact, a recent study showed that kids with dogs actually exercise eleven minutes more than their non-dog owning peers. While it may not sound like a lot, it does add up over the course of the week, month, or year. Dogs require daily walks and a lot of play time, so their adorable puppy-dog eyes actually motivate children to move, even when they don’t feel like it.
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Activities for Teaching Responsibility
Having a pet is not easy, which makes it a great way to teach kids about responsibility. Start ensuring that the dog gets his food and water for the small kids, while the older children can be responsible for walking the pet around the block. Children can learn empathy and compassion by caring for a pet, and develop a high level of self-esteem by doing their responsibilities as well.
Babies who are raised in close contact with pets are found to be sick less often in their first year. This means fewer visits to the doctor’s office. Exposure to the microbes and germs that pets carry into the home actually help improve their developing immune systems. More than that, research also found that those who grow up with dogs tend to experience fewer allergies than those who live in pet-free households.
Improved Mental Health
The presence of dogs in early childhood can be summed up in one word: happiness. Interaction with animals has been proven to raise serotonin and dopamine levels, which translates into more happy hormones, making children (and adults) happier. Disregarding the chemistry of it, however, hanging out with dogs is just fun—and a great way to brighten up the day.
These are only few of the benefits of having children grow up with dogs. These loyal, playful animals can enrich the lives of children and families in so many ways, which is why having a dog is one of the best gifts you can give your kids.