Photo from Imgur
Owning a pet isn’t just fun, it is incredibly important for child development. I grew up surrounded by a variety of different animals from the day i was born, and it had a huge impact on who I am today.
It is scientifically proven that children who grow up with pets develop a number of psychological and physical benefits than children who don't. I will elaborate more here…
Many studies have shown that children who interact frequently with animals have better social skills, higher self esteem, improved impulse control and develop deeper empathy. Working in the veterinary industry myself I constantly encourage families with children to adopt a pet as it has proven to increase confidence.
Furthermore, a pet can be a child’s best friend and a loyal companion, someone they can trust and talk to. There were moments in my own childhood when I felt the only chance I would really feel safe and comforted was with my dog. If ever was feeling upset my dog would always be there for me to hug and confide in. She was my best friend, I never felt lonely.
Photo from The Spruce
Having a pet teaches kids responsibility. Having to feed and walk them to ensure the pets health and happiness builds structure and children benefit from boundaries. It also decreases chances of child obesity and increases creativity by playing games with your pet. Children in general should spend the majority of their time outdoors exploring and using their imagination and, for example, having a dog will encourage this.
Children who grow up with pets are less likely to develop allergies and asthma. It’s been proven that family’s with pets in their home have fewer doctor visits. For example kids who play with dogs and cats will be exposed to dirt, fur, animal saliva, feaces; for parents this sounds scary doesn't it? But in fact, what this exposure does is build the child’s immune system, so they naturally have the strength in the future to fight off disease. Research has shown that interaction with animals release endorphins and dopamine in the brain which are the chemical bonds to create feelings of happiness.
Photo from NextGen Dog
If you are thinking of getting a pet for your family I recommend you adopt and don't shop. There are hundreds of amazing pets waiting to find their forever home in a number of different animal shelters around Hong Kong.
All animals are wonderful, and it is a special moment welcoming a pet into your family, don't miss out on that incredible feeling!
Helena Chan Helena is half Chinese and half Swedish and has spent the past decade travelling Asia working as a fashion model, actress and emcee. She has an incredible passion for animal welfare and has spent years doing charity work for a number of different organisations to help promote proper animal care. Helena is a certified Surgical veterinary nurse and an ambassador for the Hong Kong animal charity LAP. Her goal in life is to incorporate both her skills as an emcee and her knowledge of animal welfare to educate the public on how they can help endangered species.