Is a Puppy the Perfect Quarantine Companion for Your Kids?

Dogs are not only man’s best friend — they are loved by virtually everyone. While owning a pet requires a lot of responsibility, having a puppy in your home can be quite pleasurable, especially during quarantine. If you are on the fence as to whether or not you should get a puppy for your family during this time of social distancing, here are some things you should know.

Dogs and Young Children

Before getting a dog, there are a number of things that you must consider, especially if you have small children. First of all, not all dogs are child-friendly, therefore you must choose the breed of puppy according to the type of temperament it has and if that particular dog does well with children. Small children can be pretty rough and naive when it comes to dealing with animals, so a breed such as a Weimaraner, Rottweiler, Akita, Malamute, or Shih Tzu might not be the best to have around your child. On the other hand, breeds such as Golden Retrievers, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, or Labrador Retrievers are quite gentle with children and have some of the best temperaments.

You Have One Child

Not being able to play with friends during the COVID-19 quarantine can be difficult for any child, but even more so for an only child. When your child doesn’t have brothers or sisters, having a dog can be the next best thing as having a sibling. A dog can help your child deal with feelings of loneliness, deal with anxiety issues and much more. A dog will always be ready to play, entertain, or snuggle, which can help provide support and comfort during this time that your child could really use it.

Great for Protection

Not only are dogs great at protecting your home and alerting you of danger, they can also help your child feel protected. These are scary times and your child may be worried about what’s going on in the world. Having their dog close by can help your child feel safe as they go to sleep at night as well as during the day. As a parent, you want to make sure that your child is as safe as possible, so having a dog in the house just adds an extra layer of protection..

Improve Bonds With Others

When a child has love and affection from their dog, it can help them to recognize and develop those emotions and apply them in their relationships with other people. For instance, if you have more than one child and they share a dog, the bond that they both share with their pet can actually help them form a stronger connection between themselves, particularly when they are spending a lot of time together. Dogs give lots of love and affection which in turn teaches kids how to reciprocate those emotions as well.

Pet Health

No matter what type of dog you get, at some point, you will have to go to the vet for wellness checkups and maybe an occasional sickness. However, there are some dog breeds that require more health care than others and can be more susceptible to illness and disease. Breeds such as the Australian Cattle Dog, Australian Shepherd, and Poodle are some of the healthiest dogs. Australian Cattle Dogs have a record of having one of the longest lifespans. On the other hand, while great with children, Labrador Retrievers, Cocker Spaniels, and Golden Retrievers have the most health issues. Regular veterinary visits typically cost about $300 per year with a healthy dog. However, dogs with health issues may require special medications, a special diet, and even treatments that can run hundreds of dollars each year.

Your Family’s Health

Before you can introduce a pet into your home, you have to consider the health of your family first. If anyone in your home has allergies to pets, then you definitely should not introduce a puppy into your home. However, there are ways that having a dog can actually be good for your family’s health as dogs require walking which will encourage your family to get exercise. This is really helpful for family members who have excessive weight or deal with high blood pressure as walking can be a great way to burn calories effortlessly while helping to reduce stress at the same time.

Who Takes Care of Them?

Adopting a puppy is a big decision, so you should make sure your kids are prepared for the responsibility. If the dog will be more for the entire family, then all family members should definitely play a role in caring for the dog. However, even if your children are small, they can still help you with taking care of the dog by helping to portion food, going with you on walks, helping with grooming, etc. You can delegate small responsibilities to your child until he or she is old enough to handle caring for their dog on their own.

Think Long-Term

One thing that is true about all living creatures is that they all must pass away eventually. One of the hardest parts about having a pet is having to deal with losing them which is something that is unavoidable. However, for the time that you and your family have with your dog, your lives can be enhanced significantly from an emotional standpoint as well as a physical one. Most people who own dogs tend to be healthier as dogs require walks and activity, while children who have pets benefit from learning a sense of responsibility as well.

Improve Your Home Environment

Having a dog can help create a stronger bond among the entire family as you all share a common interest and love. You all can enjoy some quality family time as you take the dog out for a walk or play a game of fetch in the backyard. Dogs can make these quarantine days much better as they are always happy to see you and eager to interact which makes your day much better by having one around.

There can be so many benefits of adopting a dog for your child during quarantine such as improving your family’s emotional health as well as physical health. Dogs require exercise which will, in turn, cause your family to get exercise also. Since dogs are so loving and fun, playing with them or just petting them can be a great way to relieve stress and improve mental health as well during these difficult times.

If you’re needing more ideas for how to keep your family busy during the Coronavirus quarantine, check out this article.

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