At some point most children fall in love with animals. When children realize they can take them home and see them everyday, they usually start practicing those negotiation skills… At least my children have. They will try to convince you they are responsible and they will help out, but if you have a busy life already, then you may cringe knowing this new responsibility may fall on you. Is your child ready for a pet? How do you prepare your child and yourself for a new addition?
Just yesterday, my daughter approached me and told me how much she would love to have a hamster to care for. She explained she wanted more responsibility, and that taking care of a hamster would be a great place to start. – Begin negotiation.
I didn’t make a rash decision to get her a hamster. My love for animals started at a young age so I expected this day would come. It is not that she has never asked for animals. We have had saltwater and freshwater fish, and have a dog and chinchilla today. I started planning for the day she would have her own pet and the responsibility that goes with that years ago. I worked to instill her with qualities such as compassion, empathy, responsibility, and nurturing.
She already plays a huge role in caring for our dog and chinchilla. She lets the dog in and out, feeds him, gives him treats, and most importantly spends time with him daily. She does the same for our chinchilla, minus the letting him outdoors. 🙂 This alone may not be enough to tell me she is ready, but she definitely has a good foundation and I would suggest that you look for similar qualities in your children when determining if they are ready to have their own pet.