Many of us have grown up with pets and can’t imagine life without them – the cat that slept on our bed, the dog that waited patiently at the gate until we got home from school. And now our own children are experiencing similar companionship and fun. Children and pets just seem to belong together.
Children and pets have a special relationship. While the pet is often entertained by having a child around, there are also many benefits for children in having a pet in their home:
- Children can develop a respect for animals when they live alongside them and this helps prepare them for later life.
- The child learns about the responsibilities in caring for another living creature – even if they don’t always follow through with their tasks!
- Children with pets may be popular with their peers. The antics of a pet can make good topics of conversation, good school news items and children even learn to read body language from watching their pets.
- Children may interact more with other members of the family when there is a pet in the house.
- Many children enjoy playing outdoors with their pets and those families with dogs are more likely to undertake physical activity as a family, like walking their dog.
- Pets can help balance the increasing presence of technology. A pet is a good reason to turn off the computer or video game and have a play or a cuddle.
- Pets provide unconditional love
- Children consider pets to be very important in their lives. Many will tell their secrets to their pets and their pet provides a willing listening ear.
Which pets are best for children?
Children can benefit from having all kinds of pets in their lives. Australians love their dogs and there is no doubt that man’s best friend can also be a boy’s best mate or a girl’s cherished companion.
You can choose good family dogs based on three major factors:
- Temperament – Underlying personality or nature of the dog
- Size – Small, Toy, Miniature, Medium, Large, Giant
- Energy level – How active they want to be throughout the day
Always try to match the personality of the dog with the life style of the family.
Here are our top 5 best breeds for kids:
The Golden Retriever is a confident, smart, kind, and loyal dog. Neither aggressive nor timid, the Golden Retriever is extremely patient, which makes them a perfect match for kids. They love a play, such as retrieving toys and they are affectionate and obedient, meaning the kids will deeply fall in love with them.
This is one of the most popular dog breeds, for being playful, patient, loving, protective, and reliable. Labs are highly intelligent and easy to train. They require a lot of exercise (they love swimming!), so be sure your family is up for the challenge, and a little extra room for them to run around and play in would be optimal. They are affable dogs that get along well with other animals and pretty much everyone they meet.
Poodle are a very smart and gentle dog. The breed is available in both miniature and standard sizes, meaning you can choose the most appropriate size for your house. The Standard breed, for example, is very obedient and smart, playful and adventurous and they also get along quite well with familiar people and kids. Although miniatures usually dedicate themselves to only one person in particular, they are smart, responsive, obedient and playful turning out to be a great match for kids, too.
The Beagle being small size, also is a calm temperament makes them a perfect choice for families. In addition, this breed is known as an explorer which represents a great companion for outdoor adventures with the kids. Smart and friendly, the Beagle usually gets along with other pets too.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an affectionate, undemanding and easy to train family dog. They are excellent with children and the elderly. They are not excessive barkers but will announce strangers. They are no guard dogs however, as they greet most people warmly. Cavaliers get along with everyone, including cats and other small pets. Being relatively small and easy going, they make good travel companions and family pets.
Karen Burke is a former journalist who has interviewed murderers on death row, flown over L.A. with the LAPD and patrolled with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police near the Arctic , she joined our team since one year!