Dogs are affectionate animals that can have a positive impact on the lives of children. In addition to being a warm and fuzzy source of entertainment, studies have shown that children who grow up with a family dog experience numerous physical, social, emotional and cognitive benefits. In fact, children raised with a dog in their homes are found to be happier, healthier and smarter than children that grow up without a family dog in their household.
According to the Director of Humane Education for the ASPCA, dogs act as a stimulus for running and practicing motor skills. Dog ownership can help children avoid a sedentary indoor lifestyle. Research conveys that families who own dogs are much more physically active than those without one. Walking the dog, playing fetch, or even just taking the dog outside to go to the bathroom are examples of how a dog can lead to a more active lifestyle.
Dogs can help children develop key social skills. For example, a child is more likely to interact with another child if he or she is playing with a dog. Dogs are social facilitators especially for children that are less socially outgoing. A family dog also serves as a vital companion, which is the premise of breeders at Red Fern Companions.
A dog’s companionship has been shown to help prevent depression and loneliness. Furthermore, the love of a dog can comfort kids when they are sad, stressed, or nervous. In addition to being a source of comfort, a dog will also teach children stress management, coping skills, and responsibility.
Kids spend a lot of time with the family dog. When children learn to take care of a dog, they also develop various parental and creative skills. Additionally, parents often find that a dog serves as a great listener for a child that wants to practice reading skills.
Children develop unique and special bonds with the family dog. Research shows that a dog can calm an aggressive or hyperactive child. In addition to providing benefits for bad-tempered children, dogs also can help manage behavioral issues in children with special needs.
In today’s world, parents often struggle to spend enough time with their children. Having a family dog at home will help to bridge that gap by providing a meaningful companion that can help with childhood development. Moreover, a dog makes growing up fun for a child!