How Pets Benefit Child Development


Having a pet is one of the perks of being a child; you have plenty of time to take care of him and play with him, and he is your best friend. It does not matter if you give your child a goldfish, a ferret, cat, do, or a horse; having a pet is going to make them happier. These cute, furry, and warm friends are not only adorable and fun, but they offer developmental benefits as well. Pets encourage children to interact with others, make them more open, and by far more emotional.

Physical activity

More running around and developing motor skills are just some of the things a pet can offer to a child. Taking a dog out for a walk, throwing a ball in the back yard, running all over the house after a ferret or a bunny, and climbing couches and armchairs with a cat – these are just some of the wonderful and fun activities a child can do with a pet. By making sure their pet has enough space, and that they get enough physical activity, child will be physically active as well. Children who have pets are less likely to be obese and overweight, something both themselves and their parents will appreciate later on in life.

Help with learning

Children who have difficulties with learning can benefit a lot from interacting with pets. Often when a child has difficulty with reading, they will be too embarrassed to read out loud to their parents or siblings, but they will not give it a second thought when asked to read to their pets. Pets are their friends who cannot speak or make fun of them, and by reading out loud to them child will have more self-esteem.

More responsible

If they are old enough to get their own pet, children will soon understand that their duties and obligations are their own, so they will not ask their siblings or parents to do something for them. They will take their pet to the vet, clean up after them, feed them, and buy them toys. What is more, they will probably do a bit of research on their own about what is good for their pets, so they will start buying the healthiest food and snacks for them. Chewy toys are great for puppies while there are also some brands of organic food like canidae which is best for dogs with sensitive stomachs.

Pets as therapy

Children can sometimes worry a lot and get sad for all kinds of reasons they are not always willing to discuss with their parents. Because of the special bond they share with their pets, they will usually turn to their furry friends for comfort. Pets will never judge them, they will always be there for them, and even simply petting a cat or cuddling with a dog can ease child’s anxiety and help them relax. Trusting a pet will eventually help a child open up a bit more towards their family and friends as well.

It is important to talk to your child in advance and see if they are ready to take care of their pet. They should know when to feed them, take them out, and when they should go to the vet. By having a pet and taking care of it through childhood, children will grow up to be responsible, happy, and healthy adults who will certainly allow their own children to have pets some day.


  • Pets are indeed a therapy for th families they live with, but I dread their loss having gone through it once.

    • That’s true. People, especially children, get quite attached with pets as much as to consider them inseparable part of family. And, if it’s not a turtle, pets usually ave much shorter life span than human.

  • Leena Walawalkar

    I echo Indrani’s fear! But my toddler is so super fond of dogs, that I’m wondering if he might just come home one day with one 🙂

    • There is no doubt how quickly kids develop attachment with pets.