“Give a boy a dog and you've furnished him a playmate.”
- Berton Braley
Yes, if you give a boy (or a girl) a dog, you’ve definitely given them a playmate – but you’ve given them so much more. Sure, there will be lots of hugs and kisses, but a dog benefits your child in ways you may not even think of. So, if your children have been asking for a fur baby to join the family, there are some really good reasons you should go for it!
Dogs Teach Responsibility
When you bring a dog into your home, you give your child the chance to take responsibility for something. Even the smallest children can help with taking care of a dog. They can pour food and water into your dog’s bowls. Older children can be responsible for walking or bathing your dog. Get your child actively involved in taking care of your dog!
Dogs Teach Kids Empathy and Compassion
Having a dog can teach your child about empathy and compassion. For example, when you have your dog spayed or neutered, they may come home being a bit sore and tired. This is the perfect time to teach your dog about why your dog needs some extra love and attention now. When they learn to have empathy and compassion for their pet, you will find that it translates into having the same for their family and friends.
Dogs Provide Companionship and Comfort
Has your child ever come home from school and needed some comfort? Maybe they did poorly on an exam or got into an argument with a friend? Your dog could be just what your child needs at the moment to boost his or her spirits. Dogs are great for companionship and provide plenty of comfort on not-so-great days.
Dogs Promote Family Discussions
As kids turn into teenagers, you may find that they spend more time in their rooms and less time talking to you – it’s natural as they work to find their way in the world. But the one great thing you’ll always have in common – and can lead to some great conversations – is your dog. Invite your teen down to spend some time with you and the family dog and let the conversation flow.
Dogs Are Fun
And to put it plain and simply…dogs are fun! And shouldn’t every child have a little fun in their life?
There are probably a million more reasons why your children can benefit from having a dog, but you don’t need a million reasons. If you have a dog already, you know the good things they bring to your family. And if you’re thinking about getting a dog, your children are going to reap endless benefits from the unconditional love the dog will give to them.