When Children and Pets Bond

When Children and Pets Bond

Published in IANS Life

“Love requires no words, and neither does love care about the shape and size."

The adage perfectly sums up the bond between a human and an animal. Pets perfectly encapsulate the notion of unconditional love since the relationship with them is filled with endless hours of cuddling and joy. They give us affection, teach us responsibility, and are the best stress relievers. Nothing could ever match their pure sensation of sincerity. As a parent, who only wishes for the best for their child, what could be better than getting them a furry friend to help them grow and learn valuable life lessons? Here's a look at some ways in which pets can enrich your child’s early years: 

Pets help in developing emotions and qualities in kids

Animals rely on others for their needs, and caring for them is an excellent method for kids to learn nurturing and caregiving skills. When children see a dog running to the door when it wants to go outdoors, it makes them wonder about their needs, and how they can help. And, when a child is able to fulfil their pet’s needs, they feel accomplished, and it also teaches them to care for someone other than themselves. Apart from that, pets also help the child learn basic emotions such as kindness, love, sympathy, responsibility, and respect.

 The kids learn key lessons of life

Owning a pet is an excellent method to teach your child about responsibility and empathy. If you have a pet, it allows you to teach your children about the impact their actions have on the pet. For example, if the child is acting hyper around the pet, the dog may get uncomfortable. So, a child’s interaction with a pet will help them understand that their actions have consequences, which can hurt someone. 

This life lesson will help children develop empathy skills, allowing them to protect others from abuse and make them better human beings. Furthermore, they will develop an intolerance to animal cruelty, and they will replicate the same behaviour under all circumstances. 

Interaction with pets improves the physical and emotional well-being of the kids

The COVID-induced isolation and prolonged break from physical school is affecting a kid’s physical and mental well-being. As a result, pets can make excellent companions for kids. Simply snuggling on the couch with their beloved puppy or kitten or an animal of their choice can improve a child’s mood and reduce stress as feel-good endorphins are released while playing with animals. Moreover, children understand that animals provide unconditional affection, and they can be themselves with the pets. This sense of protection and security is essential for both their physical and emotional well-being.

According to scientific research, human-animal interaction (HAI) has a good impact on children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Animals help reduce loneliness, improve social behaviour, reduces their stress levels and bridges the gap between the child and their family.

Animals are true confidants

Animals are great listeners; they never interrupt or judge you, making a child feel more comfortable with them. Children enjoy reading books to their pets, which helps them improve their reading skills while also boosting their self-esteem. Animals are also great at keeping secrets and loving you for who you are. Children often talk to their pets, telling them secrets or any other thoughts that come to their minds. Thus, the child finds a true confidant in animals.


Anatole France once said that “until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”. Hence, it’s necessary to think about creating a bond between kids and pets from an early age as it boosts self-esteem, heightens the sense of understanding, instils essential values, improves emotional intelligence, and prepares them for life.

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