It’s easy to think of lots of great reasons to get a dog, including that you’ll be adding a new, loyal member to your family. One of your worries might be that your kids aren’t ready for a dog, but one of the benefits is that they can help teach your children a number of different skills. Dogs are a responsibility, and the whole family should pitch in to help care for one. There are lots of teaching moments you can discover as you and your kids raise your dog together. Consider some of these lessons and skills they could learn with a four-legged friend by their side.
When a dog comes into your family, everyone is responsible for looking after them. A lot of parents make the mistake of letting things slide, so it’s only them who end up doing all the dog-related tasks. But if it was the kids begging for a dog, you need to make sure they stick to their promises to look after it. A dog relies on its humans to keep it healthy, feed it, and make sure it gets enough exercise. Kids can learn how to take responsibility by caring for a dog, and they’ll also learn that their hard work comes with rewards.
Care and Empathy
Some children are naturally very sensitive and empathetic from a young age. For others, it can take a while to look at things from another’s perspective. Caring for a dog can help them develop their sense of empathy for animals, as well as people. They can help with daily care and routine health tasks, from brushing fur to applying Frontline Plus Dogs to ward away ticks and fleas. They can learn about how to care for their dog’s health and treat them kindly. Kids of all ages can develop their empathy with a dog in the family.
Patience is often a tough skill for children to learn, but having a dog or any other pet can help. It’s important for kids to understand that they won’t always be able to get the dog to do whatever they want. Sometimes they will need to leave the dog alone, or they might need to be patient when trying to train them. Things often need to be done on the dog’s terms or at their speed. If they want to teach the dog tricks, they need the patience to keep working at it.
Routine and Managing Time
Having a dog necessitates having a routine, much like having kids does. Giving children routines helps the family to stay on track but getting them to manage their own time can be hard. Having the dog in the family routine can encourage them to take responsibility and get things done. Dogs need to eat at certain times, go for walks regularly, and enjoy some place sessions too. And your kids will have to fit that in around everything else they need to do.
Owning a dog is a fantastic way for kids to learn several different skills. It’s also a great way to turn them into animal lovers for life.