Having a pet in the home has proven to be a fantastic advantage for many children. There are many plusses associated with owning a pet, ranging from health benefits right through to discipline and character-building bonuses. For example, taking care of a pet teaches your child to be responsible and dependable. It’s an incredible learning opportunity and will provide your child with a much loved (and in many cases, much needed) friend.
If you don’t already own a pet though, you may not know where to start, or what kind of pet to get for your young child. It’s always good to remember that regardless of the type of pet you choose, your child will still need to be supervised when handling the animal, for the sake of the animal, of course, as young children are still quite rough.
So with that said, here is my list of good pets for toddlers:
This might sound a bit odd, but turtles make great toddler pets. In my opinion, handling a turtle could certainly instill a sense of patience in a child. Also, your little one will be wholeheartedly fascinated by the way the turtle moves and how different that movement is on land and in water. Turtles have special needs though, so be sure to do research on caring for turtles so that you know what you are getting yourself into.
A guinea pig
Not as small as a hamster and not as sensitive as a rabbit; a Guinea Pig makes an excellent pet for a young and energetic little sprout. Guinea Pigs are social animals and, therefore, need company and a bit of play time. Your little one will love holding him, but be sure to oversee your child as he handles the Guinea Pig. They’re relatively easy to care for, that doesn’t mean you can neglect him for even a moment. Keeping a tidy cage and fresh food and water is vital. You can involve your toddler in this too.
Not everyone is fond of cats, and the general stigma behind a cat is that it comes and goes as it pleases, making it an unlikely friend for a toddler. However, anyone who has ever owned a cat can certainly attest to the fact that cats are, in fact, devoted animals. If you do decide to go with a cat, be sure to watch your toddler around the litter box, you wouldn’t want him to end up in it.
Almost everyone will agree that dogs make excellent pets for children. They offer bountiful amounts of love and are extremely loyal. A dog will grow to be a watchful part of the family and it can be a relationship that will more than likely develop into a mutually dependent bond. Choose your puppy well though and do thorough research on the breed of dog you want to introduce into your family. Some breeds naturally make better family pets than others. Remember, dogs need to have space to run, just like your toddler, they have lots of energy that needs to be expelled.
Kids and pets go so well together, it’s almost like a match made in heaven. Regardless of the type of pet you choose though, remember to teach your toddler to always be kind and considerate toward the pet and encourage him to take on some of the responsibilities of keeping the animal. Also, be sure to train an animal like a dog well. If you treat your animals with a sense of peaceful authority, they will reward you with love and adoration.