Deciding on Adding a Pet to Your Family

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A pet can be a great way to teach your child responsibility. Whether it is a goldfish, a hamster, a kitten or even a puppy, a child can help with the care of the pet.

1- Choose what kind of pet to get. Go to a Petsmart or your local animal shelter. Look around with your child but do not come home with a pet yet. Allow them to freely roam and look at what kind of pets are available.

2- A good choice for a first pet that a child will be responsible for are fish or a hamster. If it is going to be a family pet, then go with something that everyone will share in the care of such as a kitten or a puppy.

3-Do your research about your pet choice. Look on the Internet and research everything about the pet your child thinks they would like to get. Do this with your child so they can see what is involved with taking care of it and how much interaction they will have with it. For example, hamsters,mice and gerbils sleep during the day. They can be good pets but they can also keep you up at night.

4-Once the choice is made, make a list of what chores the child will be responsible for. Feeding a pet can usually be handled well by a child but tasks such as cleaning a cage may be too difficult for a young child to do alone. Make it clear to the child what they will be responsible for.

5-Since you did the research on what it takes to care for the animal, make a list of all the necessary items you will need to care for and keep it.

6-Now you are ready to go and get your child’s pet. Be patient as the child and the pet get to know each other. Insist the child keeps to their promise to take care of the pet and you will be teaching some valuable lessons.

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