How Pets Aid in Raising Children

by Payton Buffington / Young Children / 12 Apr 2017

pets aid in raising children

How Pets Aid in Raising  Children


Every single parent on this planet tells themselves at some point ‘I want to raise my child to be a good person’. And there are too many factors to count what actually influences raising children right and what makes the most difference. However, the saying ‘it takes a village’ should be considered fact as having a healthy support system when raising a new human is simply imperative. But besides having grandparents, close relatives and good teachers one must take into account how much having a pet can influence the development of the child’s character. Here are some aspects in which having a pet can help raise the children:

Physical activity and overall healthier lifestyle

Studies have shown that people who are regularly physically active are healthier and have a lower risk of developing chronic diseases than people who are inactive. Since obesity is unfortunately becoming a more common problem in children, having an obligation of walking their dog daily, several times a day, can help keep the child active. So all that walking and running while playing around will help lower the chance of being overweight and help keep the child active.

Improvement in physical health

While physical activity which is present when having a dog will help keep the heart healthy. Studies have shown that having a pet can also help boost the immune system and help with allergies and asthma. So even though some parents might think that dogs are dirty, the germs they bring into the house can actually help create resistance towards illnesses. But it’s not only about the general health, more and more dogs are being trained as service dogs because they can be highly helpful. For example, if a child is diagnosed with ADHD, a dog can help release excess energy and calm the child to help them feel more at ease.


Having a pet can help a child develop some social skills because it will give them a chance to be responsible for someone other than themselves. If the mentioned pet is a dog, the child will have to learn to organize their time according to the dog’s needs. They will have to think about feeding time, walks and play time, and they can even take part in getting dog supplies since the dog is their responsibility.  Having a dog can help boost self-confidence and taking their furry friend to the dog park will make them communicate with other dog owners so they will be able to develop good social skills early on.

Emotional development

It is sometimes very difficult for kids to control their emotions but having a pet can help them with this. Whether the child is feeling sad, angry or afraid, if they have a pet, just by cuddling with them will help reduce stress levels. But it’s not only about children learning to balance and control their emotions, a pet can also help them feel less lonely and it can lower the risk of depression. Having a pet can also help develop empathy and compassion towards others since they will learn unconditional love.

Pets build family bonds

Not many people take this into account when thinking about getting a pet but it can actually be one of the biggest pros. A pet can quite often be the focus of activities for the whole family, whether it’s taking the dog for a walk, grooming and feeding him, or simply watching the cat chase a toy around the house, it can help get the family together and spend some quality time together even when doing nothing.


Olivia Williams Jones is a psychologist from Brisbane, dedicated to making some changes in the world,

starting from her own environment. Also, she is a regular contributor to High Style Life blog. Olivia is a

writer who is passionate about mental health, parenting, healthy living and pets.