The Benefits Of The Right Family Pet Might Amaze You
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The Benefits Of The Right Family Pet Might Amaze You
For three years, my daughter prayed and longed for a dog. Not just any dog, but a Siberian Husky. She went as far as creating an entire researched presentation (persuasive style no doubt), to convince my husband and me to agree to get a new family pet.
Her presentation was complete with everything we would possibly need to know — grooming information, behavior traits, and how the dog would fair in our climate. No details left out. Complete with visuals.
She is a natural animal lover our daughter, but we were skeptical. We had previous small dogs over the years, and they usually became more of a responsibility than a beloved member of the family. Our family had recently moved and were without a dog; we decided to keep it that way for a while. Our house was already pretty chaotic with two boys in diapers 14 months apart; we were not looking to add to that circus.
Our oldest didn’t give up. Even after years of us telling her that we just weren’t ready to take on a new family pet, she remained hopeful. She continued to hold onto her biggest life’s dream as a teen girl that eventually she would have a dog as her best friend.
Let’s face it; adolescence can be tough! The journey could be much sweeter with a companion.
Sure, she had companions – friends, brothers, and family; but who could she give all her love to? The kind of love and nurturing that teen girls have, but certainly don’t want to give to just anyone. She imagined this dog could be her best friend above all others. The best friend we wish we all had, one without judgment and bursting with unconditional love for us.
My husband and I have always wanted our children to have a traditional family pet experience. After many discussions with our 14-year-old, we decided the time had come. We laid the ground rules, talked about all the expectations and what-ifs. We gave the green light.
God has a beautiful way of answering our prayers and lining up situations better than we could ever have expected.
We found the perfect dog for our family soon after we decided to begin looking. And so far we have been amazed by all of the unexpected benefits of having a family pet.
Our Unexpected Benefits Of Owning A Family Pet
- Responsibility. Not only do our children get to experience the typical duties of owning a dog, but also the tasks that arise when the dog is sick or hurt. They have learned to be responsible when their pet needs them most, beyond the day-to-day responsibilities.
- Compassion. Our children are learning to be compassionate in a way I am not sure we could have “taught” them to be. It’s difficult to teach compassion. But because of the unconditional love they have for Gray, they are naturally more compassionate and attentive.
- Love. Their love continues to grow for our dog, and sadly, we know he won’t be with us forever. They will get to experience real-life love and loss eventually. Obviously, we don’t want them ever to experience loss, but it is a natural part of life. I also see the kids giving so much love and attention to the dog. It makes me smile to know that they can have a companion to give all of their love to. This creates positive vibes for our entire household.
- Happiness. What is it about taking in a pet that fills your children’s hearts with authentic joy every time they interact with it?
- Kindness. Our younger boys needed a little help in learning how to be kind, and having a dog is great training for our family to practice kindness.
- Serving Others. Our entire family got a chance to save this animal through adoption. We got to experience what it is like to offer another living thing a better life under better conditions. Animal adoption was a an excellent opportunity for our children to serve another and open their home to Gray.
- Behavior. I have one child that is highly sensitive, and I have watched his behavior change for the better since we took Gray in. He has taken to the dog, and I am amazed that an animal can soothe him the way he does. I anticipate this will only get better with time.
We didn’t just willy-nilly start looking for a pet. We researched and talked a lot! A lot. The most crucial element to choosing the right family pet is research and communication. Here are a few tips that helped us make the most of adopting a dog.
Tips To Help You Choose The Right Pet For Your Family
Communicate: Discuss as a family what type of pets you all are interested in. Create pro and con lists, talk about hypothetical scenarios, and work through them. Discussions among the family can take months or like in our case, even years. Make sure you have talked it all out and that everyone is on the same page.
Responsibility: You will probably need to go over all of the duties and delegate who will be doing what – before the new pet arrives. Knowing what to expect before you take on the new addition will help cut down on any confusion.
Patience: Take your time. Especially if you will be visiting adoption centers, it can take weeks or months until you find what may be the best match for your family.
Expectations: Explain to your children that you are going to start looking for a dog, and that takes time. Try to ease them through the process as much as possible; they will naturally be disappointed as they leave the adoption centers empty-handed.
I hope that this article encourages you to consider adopting a new family pet. There are so many benefits and life lessons to be had. Enjoy the learning process along with your children and use the adventure to gain knowledge and understanding.
With all of this talk about dogs and family pets, I want to tell you about this delightful new wholesome movie called “Belong To Us.” It’s a wonderful family-friendly movie that you can all enjoy.
The movie will warm your heart as you watch this sweet family take in a dog with an unfortunate past. This family also receives some unexpected benefits of acquiring a new family pet.
Belong To Us is Dove approved and received the Family Favorite Award for ages 12+. The Dove foundation is a non-profit that supports and creates wholesome family entertainment. You can watch a trailer of the movie here.
Even better, I have paired up with them to GIVEAWAY 2 Copies of Belong To Us! Woot 2 lucky winners will get their own copy to keep. #BelongToUs