For many of us, pets are an important part of our lives. I have enjoyed the companionship of a family pet most of my life. A gentle and loyal German Shepard, a trouble-making thief of a cat named Alex and a small terrier-mix with an extremely large personality are to name a few of the animals that have kept my secrets, demonstrated endless patience with me and loved me unconditionally.
Here are some benefits of owning a family pet:
• Taking care of a pet can help children develop social skills.
• Developing positive feelings about pets can contribute to a child's self-esteem and self-confidence.
• A good relationship with a pet can also help in developing non-verbal communication, compassion, and empathy.
• They provide a connection to nature.
• They can teach respect for other living things.
• They can be safe recipients of secrets and private thoughts--children often talk to their pets, like they do their stuffed animals.
• Physical activity
The Scottish terrier featured in this blog is our 11-year-old dog, Bailey. (This time of year, though, she is also known as Noel, Santa’s Christmas dog.)