Before giving in to their incessant bugging for a pet, find out if your child is truly ready with these smart ABC pointers.
If you are like most parents, you will definitely have heard this from your child: “Mum, can I have a pet?” And like most parents, you will also know that it does not just stop there. Let’s find out if your child is really ready for friend with these simple tips.
Age is not just a number when it comes to a pet. In fact, it plays quite a huge role in your child’s readiness for a pet. You would not expect a toddler to be able to care for a pet, since they themselves are still being taken care of. Whereas, if your child is already taking care of their own basic needs, such as bathing, dressing up and eating, you can then consider getting them a pet. Always start off with something simple, such as a goldfish.
Having a pet is like having a younger family member. It will depend on you for food, cleaning, daily comfort necessities, toiletries and occasionally, visits to the vet. This means it would require some spending on your part. If you do not want to be fully involved in the pet’s expenses, find out how your kid would pay for these necessities. Perhaps, they could keep aside some of their allowance for the pet, or trade off for some extra pocket money by doing house chores. Whatever it is, ensure that your child understands the need to be more responsible are given.
A pet is for life. This means it will be with you for a long time, sometimes even up to 10 years. It is a big responsibility that your child will have to commit to. They might be free now, but what happens when they are all grown up and will be required to commit to other aspects of their life, such as friends, work, their own family or even migrating overseas. Talk to them about the solutions they ought to plan for should all these come into play.
Your child might need to wake up early to feed the pet or perhaps use up their after-school hours to clean and care for it. Keep in mind that this also applies no matter how tired they might be, which requires a lot of patience. If your child’s schedule is already packed with tuition, extra classes and hobbies, you know having a pet is not the best option.
Do not mistake your child’s eagerness with their level of readiness. Your child might jump at every sight of a puppy, but that does not necessarily mean they can take care of one. Try to give them a plant to care for and tend to first. From there, you can see if they are able to follow directives, keep to their promises and truly care for another life form.
What are other pointers to consider when making the decision of having a pet? Leave us a comment down below.