NannyPro.com sent me a great article on kids and pets, so I thought I would share it.
10 Ways Kids Show Love to Pets
One of the most iconic images of childhood nostalgia is that of a child and their faithful pets. Whether the pets in their household are traditional, or are those of a more exotic variety, kids show their devotion to their animal friends in a variety of ways; here are ten of the most common.
- Taking Them Everywhere – While this behavior sometimes wears off along with the novelty of pet ownership, many children want to take their pets with them wherever they go. From being faithfully tailed by the family pooch to carrying a turtle in their pocket, kids show their love with a reluctance to be separated from them.
- Trying to Care For Them – Younger children may find it difficult to complete pet related chores without help, and older ones may need to be reminded from time to time, but kids who love their pets want to be sure that their happy, healthy and well taken care of.
- Sharing Their Beds – Even against the edicts of a parent, kids often let pets of the four-legged mammal variety hop onto the bed when no one is looking. Sharing is one of the ways that kids show that they care for people and pets alike.
- Lots of Affection – Younger kids may need reminders to be gentle with pets when showing their love, but kids of all ages shower a beloved pet with plenty of physical affection and a lot of extra cuddling.
- Sharing Their Secrets – When kids need a sympathetic ear to listen to their innermost thoughts and secrets, turning to a trusted and well-loved pet is often their first choice. The absence of judgment and commentary makes it an appealing outlet for kids, and sometimes even the adults in the family, too.
- Teaching Them Tricks – Teaching a pet to perform tricks or training them to behave requires patience and an investment of time. Kids are notoriously short on patience, but will often work for hours with a pet despite that fact.
- Playing Games – The repetition of playing fetch for an extended period of time does little to satisfy the modern child’s need for constant stimulation, yet they can do it with gusto simply because they love spending time with their pet.
- Giving Out Snacks and Treats – Getting a child to remember the regular feeding schedule can be tricky, but they never hesitate to dole out treats or even to share their food if no one is looking.
- Trusting Them – Despite the knowledge that pets can bite or scratch, kids who love their pets trust them without reservation, never considering the idea that their furry friend could hurt them. This complete lack of fear is one of the more subtle ways that children show their love for a pet.
- Defending Them From Angry Adults – When the dog chews up a shoe or the cat knocks over a lamp, it can cause even the most calm of parents to fly into a rage. This sort of behavior can also be met with vows to find the pet a new home that are made in the heat of the moment, which can send a devoted child into defense-attorney mode. In order to avoid losing a much-loved member of the family, they will valiantly defend the animal’s actions.