For those who have kids, more times than not, you are going to be asked about getting a pet. This is a huge decision for a family to make and should not be taken lightly! Pets can be a great way for kids to learn valuable life lessons, including responsibility. However, parents should determine if they are up for the task as well, as your kids are not going to be able to do everything for the pet. Another important factor to consider is if you family can afford a pet and if you have the time to devote to a pet. For those parents who are ready to take the plunge, here are a few ideas for pets that are considered some of the best for kids!

Best Pets for Kids

  1. petsFish: However, not a goldfish! Instead, choose the Betta fish, aka the Siamese fighting fish. Why is this? It requires no aerators, filters, heaters or chemicals. They thrive in isolation; thus, a fish bowl is all that is needed!
  2. Turtles: Turtles are great for those kids who may have allergies. However, be aware that reptiles can transmit salmonella, thus they are not recommended for small children.
  3. Birds: A great started bird is the parakeet. While they do require daily attention, they can be a great way to get your child a pet that is not going to be as demanding of the entire family.
  4. Hamsters: They require a small living space, and they are solitary. They can be a great starter pet. They will require daily handling to get them accustomed to being touched and to promote friendliness.
  5. Cats: These are great options for limited space. They are also notorious for being independent, they will require going to the vet on a yearly basis. Some of the best breeds for children include Abyssinian, American shorthair, Burmese and Birman.
  6. Dogs: Who doesn’t love a cuddly puppy? These do require attention, and they require more effort in terms of house training. They also like daily affection. Some great breeds for children include Labradors, golden retrievers, pugs, cocker spaniels and the Australian sheep dog.

The Benefits of Pets for Children

There are several life lessons that children can learn from having pets! These life lessons include:

  1. Forming a healthy sense of self and building their self-esteem. As the child loves on the animal, the animal returns this love. It has been shown from this interaction, children see their potential and know that they are capable of love.
  2. Understanding that their own behavior reflects into the world. This is especially true when dealing with pets who may be skittish if the child acts in a certain way.
  3. Responsibility! Kids can be given chores for dealing with their pet, which will build their responsibility.
  4. petsHealthy living habits as more kids realize that what their pet eats affects their life, they also learn about the value of being active. These are attributes that kids need to embrace to live a healthy life!
  5. Leadership: when a child must oversee their pet, they often develop natural leadership characteristics that will serve them better in life!

So, what do you think, are pets in your family’s future? If so, do your research, take your time in choosing and be sure to talk with your child about what all comes with having a pet. It is not always about having something cute to cuddle or look at. Pets are a responsibility and they will become another member of your family!