Some of you may not now that I am not only a parent to two beautiful toddler girls but I am a mom to 3 handsome boys…fur babies if you will. Yes, we have 3 dogs, and yes I am that obsessed owner that refers to them as part of the family. Many fellow parents with kids often question our sanity in having 3 dogs along when we have two girls in such close age, and so young. Obviously these friends have no pups of their own or only have have one, because they are in fact sane. Having pets with kids, especially young kids, is not an easy feat! So this is clearly the reason we are always asked or given that WHY? Face. It’s not only added chaos, but more mouths to remember to feed, finance, and teach your kids to respect. The added work is part of the reason I believe that having animals with kids is a good thing! Now, don’t get me wrong, your allergic? Or simply don’t want the added stress? Then take this blog as a look into the other side and examples of all the things you don’t have to worry about! But for those constantly questioning what you were thinking or wondering if you should add another member to the family here are my top reasons why having pets for my kids is blessing in furry clothing.
Learning to Respect boundaries
Obviously animals are not always in the perfect snugly moods. In fact, in our case we have two grumpy old men who’d rather not be disturbed and just one spunky young dog who is usually always up for some pets. This gives us the opportunity to teach our kids that you have to respect animals. Telling them to not pull or hit or touch them when they eat, shows our kiddos that they can’t just act on their impulse to go and run up to them and do what they want when they want. We see this reflects with how they treat people and learning to respect the boundaries of everyone.
Having pets always provides us with the chance to teach our little ones some responsibility. I let my 2 1/2 year old help me feed the dogs and take their water bowl to there tray. She loves helping and especially with this task because she likes seeing her dogs so excited after she’s fed them. We also let her help “walk” them in the front or back yards when it’s wet and we have to take them out individually. She usually just holds on to the leash and gets pulled around (we only let her walk the two little dogs).
There is a reason people refer to their pets as their kids! They are babies, in constant need of care and affection. Having animals is like playing pretend “mommy” all the time! Having to feed, walk, and care for them in general gives kids the chance to see what it is like to care for someone you love. It’s a learned process sometimes, but one that will stick with them through the years.
The greatest thing about having pets, a dog especially, is their nature to love you no matter what. This shows my kids that yes, they may mess up or loose patience with their dogs but they will always be loved by them. While we as their parents certainly love them unconditionally, kids don’t always see it that way since we correct them and try and teach them to be better little humans. Since animals are so good at holding their tongues, kids see it as it is, unconditional. This helps them feel less anxious, safer, and thus improves their self-esteem.
While we may be a little crazy for having so many loving, boundary having, nurture needing, responsibilities, we really think in the long run pets will help make our children better people and hopefully provide our pups with even more love!