Advantages for Kids Growing Up with a Dog

W hile many of the kids are begging for their parents to own a pet, parents are then thinking of some obligation the...



While many of the kids are begging for their parents to own a pet, parents are then thinking of some obligation they will have if they get one. But do you know that pets most particularly dogs can have a benefit to your children? 

1.      A Lesson of Responsibility


Owning a dog require a child's responsibility because they need feeding, grooming, exercise, affection, shelter, and other needs. Children can care for these animals depending on their age and in the process. Taking care of a living being is different than being responsible from walking, bathing, feeding, and picking up after- these are all tasks that your child could do for the household pet.

2.      Beneficial for Child's Health



IMMUNE SYSTEM

Recent studies have concluded that children who lived with pets especially dogs during their first year of life actually had a better immune system than those who did not. They believe that exposure to dogs may have positively boosted the maturation of their immune system during infancy. In addition, when they did fall ill, they needed a shorter course of antibiotics compared to the children who did not live with pets.

 ALLERGIES
Another study found that children who were predisposed (at least one parent suffers from) respiratory allergies or asthma, are much less likely to develop similar issues if they they have a dog in the house. They found that the early exposure is key. Children who had a dog after the first year of birth had no added health benefits.


SKIN

Recent studies found that dogs actually protect children who are at risk for eczema. In fact, children with dog allergies, who did not have dogs in the home, were four times more likely to develop eczema than those who did.

3.      Improves Emotional Intelligence

Owning a dog can help child improve their emotional intelligence by practicing them on how to be selfless. A teacher who participated in a study said, “Having pets is an INVALUABLE aid for helping the children gain pride, caring, and empathy for the needs of themselves and others”.
In addition, caring for a pet builds a child's self-esteem. Accomplishing small tasks (such as filling up their water dish) will help them feel like they are competent and will also give them a sense of accomplishment.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that children with dogs in the home had reduced anxiety levels. They believe that kids who interact with dogs have increased levels of oxytocin released to their brain. In short,  DOGS = HAPPINESS.


           4. Lessens Gadget Time and More Play 
Try having a dog when you want your child to stay away from gadgets. On average, children who have a dog in the home exercise an average of 11 minutes more per day than those who do not have a dog. Those minutes may not seem like a lot, but they add up to 5.5 hours a month, and 66 hours per year! Some researchers believe that dog ownership may be a viable way to help combat childhood obesity.


5. Good therapy


AUTISM
Did you know that 1 in 45 children in the United States have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? That is nearly 2% of the entire population of children ages 2-17 years of age. Some of the many benefits include:

§  Dog provides sense of security
§  Decrease meltdowns
§  Decrease anxiety and acts of aggression
§  Increased willingness to try new things
§  Increased ability to face fearful situation
§  Increases social interaction due to the dog being an ice breaker and taking the focus off the child’s disability
§  Encourages verbal communication, increased vocabulary
§  Dogs help create consistency and a routine
§  Provides an outlet for excess energy to help aid in hyperactivity
§  Dogs help children cope with isolation and depression
§  They take the stress out of new social situations


ADD and ADHD

A recent study in the United States found that 6.4 million children have been diagnosed with ADHD. Even more concerning, the rate increases almost 2% with every passing year. Some of the benefits of a ADD or ADHD therapy dog include:
§  Dogs help create consistency and a routine
§  Provides an outlet for excess energy to help aid in hyperactivity
§  Dogs help children cope with isolation and depression
§  They take the stress out of new social situations


As a parent, adopting or having a dog can be the best decision for your child!


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