‘THE IMPORTANCE TO RAISE CHILDREN AROUND ANIMALS’
Animals, both living and represented in pictures, stories, TV characters and tots play a large part of a child”s life. pretending to be an animal by moving like one can help develop body awareness, gross motor skills and can help with self regulation (feelings, behaviour and energy levels). This also leads into the help of developing their imagination and creativity.
Aside from building memories, having a pet in the house can serve some pretty incredible purposes which comes to the emotional development and physical health of kids.
‘One green planet’ has put together a few reasons why its important to raise kids around animals.
- Kids who had a dog during the first year of their life had a higher immune response
- Inspired fashion designers always had a muse
- Children with an animal companion in the home have a higher self – esteem
- Living with and interacting with a family pet increases empathy and compassion
- Having a furry friend in the house can help instill a sense of responsibility in kids
- Poop scooping chores are for their own good!
Research shows that humans have an interest in animals on a biological level. We are drawn to species that are ‘other’ than human and in many cases have an instinct to want to care for or nurture creatures that are smaller and more vulnerable. Researchers say that the support a child gets in their love for animals tend to bring that love to other living things such as plants and nature. It is also shown that kids who are encouraged to care for other living things tend to be more sensitive and caring towards other people.
Children who still want to chase animals or squash bugs is still considered normal behaviour as they will want to learn to play with their own power and explore vulnerability. They want to know ‘what happens if..’ – with the outcome of them trying it out. Once discovered they will learn their own capabilities and the impacts that they may have on themselves and the environment.
Whether you are able to have a pet for the household or not, there are so many opportunities for children to interact with animals throughout their youth, a farm, the zoo, a bush walk or the beach are just a few places for a child to interact with animals (friendly of course!).