When small children are growing up amongst pets such as dogs, cats, rabbits or any other animal, they learn how to love and care for their pets. They will shoulder the responsibility to take care and feel the need to keep it safe and healthy. This makes them highly intelligent in terms of emotions and also have more empathy in their lives. When they learn how to carry responsibilities at an early stage, it advantages them to face life in general while growing up.
Academics alone cannot boost up one’s intelligence level. Both real-life scenarios and academics should act together in intelligence training. Having pets is the perfect way to do it. The child moves through many stages along with the pet, learning “what to do” and “when to do” some things. Below, we have listed many qualities that a kid will develop with EQ skills.
#1 Sensitivity/ Compassion
Sensitivity is a much-needed quality in today’s world. In a world where people don’t feel for the needy, bringing up kids who understand how to be compassionate is very important.
Authors of “The Book of Human-Animal Interaction” did a study on this. They have found out that young kids improve and learn how to love and care for the pet when they are taking part in the responsibilities of taking care of it alongside their parents.
They learn how the pets should be touched and handled gently and be fed regularly. They teach themselves how other lives should be treated. Kids give portions of their meals such as pieces of meat or vegetables to the animals when they are eating. The love that the kid grows towards the animal is the factor that makes them grow compassionate. When little children learn how to be sensitive towards other lives at an early stage, maybe when they are around 3 years old, they carry that feature throughout their lives.
Having pets is not a bad responsibility on family members’ shoulders. Taking care of a pet is a lesson that every kid should learn as early as they can. Many studies have positive records that a child growing up with a pet animal acts more sensibly towards not only animals but also other humans too.
#2 Dignity/ Self-Esteem
No one feels self-esteemed without first getting the feeling of winning or accomplishment. People, especially children, should feel that they are capable of doing something without failing. If they continuously have doubts about their capabilities as a person, they will keep on doubting themselves at every stage of life.
The best way for a little kid of 3 or 4 years old to feel contended with their abilities and to improve their esteem, is to take care of a pet. Parents should allow their kids to fill the pet’s water bowl or the food tray or even let them help give cleanups for the animal. Ben and Nienke, the researchers of human-animal interactions has written in their book that keeping a pet in a small graders’ classroom will greatly accelerate the dignity rate. As per their study, it was the under-esteemed children who showed a better upgrade in their research related to self-esteem.
#3 Cognitive Development
Cognitive development is measured in terms of the ability to process information, perpetual skills and language learning on a child’s development. There are some instances where parents tend to keep their children away from the family pet, thinking that the animal can be a bad influence or that the kid could catch a disease because they are still small.
But, as mentioned above, interacting with an animal greatly develops the cognitive skills of a child. Small children always like talking to animals in sweet and caring words, playing games with them and even reading stories to them.
These actions push up the cognitive development of a child. As studies have revealed, when a child interplay with an animal, most of the time the family pet, they continuously engage in praising, punishing, giving orders and encouragements. That simple action might not concern us so much but, at the end, it functions as the fact that enriches the verbal skills of the kids.
So, let your child get along with the pet you own. Let them look after it and play with it because that won’t affect your child negatively. Instead, that will become a great impact in molding the child to be highly skilled verbally, physically as well as emotionally.
#4 Minimize stress levels
Most of the time, when stress is mentioned, we only consider adults. Kids are left out regarding stress. How can a child feel stressed? All they have to do is play and be bubbly. Right? This is how we all assume but, that’s a big fat wrong assumption. Children do feel stressed.
Ben Baarda and Nienke Edenburg included this in their book too. They wrote that a child can be bald and express all their feelings and pour their problems out to a pet and still get loved back without any scoldings or judgement. Their problems can range to anything including bad test results or angry parents. Did you know that when most children were asked who they would choose to share their problems with, they answered with their pet’s name?
So, it’s proven that pets act as stress relievers for your younger ones.
#5 Learn the life cycle
Unlike other stages of life such as birth, getting sick and growing up, “death” is the hardest part to teach a younger one. But, living and growing up with a pet can make things easy for both parents and children. It will be easy for parents to teach what death is and the experience will help children to understand the feelings of losing a loved one.
Parents being more matured and experienced in life should help kids understand the feeling and overcome them. Adults should openly discuss their previous encounters in life, related to death. Passing away of a pet can help a child fully understand the life cycle of every living being. But, it can cause them an emotional trauma too. Parents are responsible to soothe and comfort their children and let them know that having these heartbreaking feelings are okay and normal.
Although the positive impact caused by a pet to a child can vary according to the family structure and members, the advantages a child gets from a pet remains the same.