Why Does Every Kid Need a Pet?

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People have been keeping pets for a wide variety of reasons, and these furry, scaly, and feathered companions have been a beloved part of many families for generations. They offer all sorts of companionship and loyalty, making people happy and even healthy. This is especially true for kids. They benefit a lot from owning domestic animals, whether it’s a dog, cat, parrot, or fish.

Without further ado, let’s delve deeper into why every child needs a pet.

Companionship & Emotional Development

Animals can easily provide children with a variety of different skills that they need to have. This can be as simple as teaching them how to look after someone other than themselves or simply teaching them that companionship can come in all different forms. Pets can easily grow a sense of love and attachment towards their young human companions, which helps children develop a sense of self-worth and helps them achieve emotional stability. 

The knowledge that their pet is a great friend to them can be a source of great comfort. Additionally, caring for an animal teaches a child responsibility and empathy. Feeding and tending to a pet’s needs can easily instill a sense of duty in kids, which is a good trait to have from a young age.

Physical Health Benefits

This can easily depend on the type of pet you decide to give your child, as there is a ton of physical activity in the case of a dog but little to no activity when it comes to a pet lizard, for example. 

Pets are almost always active and running around. As mentioned above, this does not apply to every little beast you get, but if you want to encourage some physical activity in your child, then you should get an active four-legged companion that will have your kid running for hours in enjoyment. This can be in the form of walks with the dog or looking after an active cat around the house. One thing to note is that, just like humans, animals can be extremely lazy, so this can vary incredibly based on the personality of your furry friend.

Reduced Allergies

Allergies can be very annoying if allowed to develop till adulthood. Exposure to animals from an early age may reduce the risk of allergies and asthma in children, which is a huge advantage. This is because of the contact and proximity which can help bolster the immune system and build tolerance to common allergens.

Cognitive and Educational Benefits

The very presence of a pet can stimulate a great deal of cognitive development in a child and enhance their educational experience. By taking care of a small furry companion, they will naturally begin to become more curious regarding their new friend and develop a variety of skills to keep their new companion happy and well-fed. Animals in general can spark a kid’s curiosity about the natural world. They will ask questions regarding other types of animals and learn about their behaviors, habitat, and what they eat. This can be a huge boost in knowledge for children.

Cats and dogs are typical choices of most people, and if you hesitate to choose, you should find out the difference between cat people and dog people. Cat owners are more likely to be creative and have an interest in cooking and activities that are done inside the home. Dog owners, in turn, are very active and lean toward outdoor activities and sports like golf. All this improves a kid’s cognitive and educational skills.

Emotional Regulation and Stress Relief

While normally a child should not be dealing with stress, the presence of a furry companion can significantly reduce their anxiety levels. A pet’s presence can provide comfort and a sense of security even in the darkest of times. Children often trust them, sharing their thoughts and feelings.

Multiple studies have shown that petting a dog or cat can trigger the release of serotonin, a natural mood stabilizer. The act of caring for a pet also encourages mindfulness and an overall relaxed attitude. Another way an animal companion can help is by alleviating the loss of a loved one. While this is no way a one-to-one replacement of a person, it offers another outlet for children to exhibit their love.

Types of Pets You Should Get Your Child

The choice of a pet should align with the child’s age, temperament, and most importantly, the family’s lifestyle. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular choices for kids:

1. Dogs

Dogs are best known for their loyalty and strong bond with humans. They require regular exercise and grooming, which makes them a bit tough for children to manage. Nevertheless, dogs are ideal for active families and children who are responsible and can invest time in a pet.

2. Cats

Cats are independent yet affectionate social creatures. They are very low maintenance and can be ideal for families with busy schedules or small living spaces. This continues with your child who may be too busy in school or just wants a small feline companion.

3. Small Mammals

This category includes hamsters, guinea pigs, and to some extent rabbits. All of them are suitable for families with limited space. A thing that you need to note is that they require basic care, but overall their presence can be a good introduction to owning an animal. One thing to note is that these pets can be very fragile and are not the best for very young children or those who are irresponsible and can cause harm to small creatures.

4. Fish

Fish tanks offer a visually pleasing experience and can be very engaging for smaller kids. Fish are extremely low maintenance and can be an excellent choice for children who are not ready to take care of something more advanced.

5. Birds

Birds like parakeets and canaries are colorful and very talkative friends. They are ideal for families looking for interaction but who lack the space and cannot afford the clutter of a dog or cat. 


The bond between a child and their pets is special and fosters a range of important life skills. Both offer unconditional love and support towards each other, as well as a sense of companionship. While ownership of a creature requires commitment and responsibility, the benefits are immeasurable. 

Almost every child can benefit from the presence of a small furry friend in their life and can be shaped through their experiences. A kid’s character and outlook will develop positively when introduced to their new companion, regardless of whether this companion is furry, feathery, or scaly.

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