What is a Good Pet for Kids? Here are 5 Kid Friendly Pets

Have your kids been hampering you to buy a pet?  If so, here are 5 kid friendly pets which are not only conducive to children, but will offer enjoyment to the entire family.

Dogs

One of the most lovable of all breeds is the Beagle.  They love children, are very social, loyal, intelligent, offer unconditional love, and provide hours of enjoyment.  They range in height from 13-16 inches, and are just wonderful watch dogs as well.

While most beagles are usually kept outdoors, they love the indoors as well.  Care and maintenance of the beagle is affordable.  Ensure they are acquired through a breeder, however, since most pet shops may have beagles who originated from puppy mills.

If you are purchasing a beagle from a breeder, you can easily trace its lineage online by checking its pedigree.

Fish

Fish are also affordable kid friendly pets.  They are easy to maintain and are available in a variety of species.  The only caveat is that a tank with a proper filtration system is required.  They are not only beautiful to look at, but for adults they act as a de-stressor and provide a soothing atmosphere as well.

Hamsters, Guinea Pigs, Gerbils

These members of the rodent family are inexpensive to purchase, but the incidentals such as cages, food, and toys may be a bit costly.  They can provide hours of fun for kids, however, there is one drawback: They have a short lifespan.  They require low maintenance, and their cages should be cleaned regularly.

Note: Gerbils have large incisors which means they tend to bite, so its important to provide them with baby carrots or other vegetables since they love to chew on just about anything.

Parakeets/Parrots

There are a wide variety of parakeet and parrot species which may be suitable for kids.  Parrots, especially, can provide hours of enjoyment since most of them are highly intelligent and can be taught words or phrases by the kids.

It is important to note, however, that some parrots available today have been illegally caught and traded.  Acquiring a young parrot from a breeder may be more suitable since it can be trained more easily.

Parrots can be costly; a steel cage and numerous toys would be needed to prevent the parrots from becoming bored.  Food, water and bath dishes are required as well.
Whether you choose a parrot or parakeet, it is important to ascertain if they are healthy, show any idiosyncrasies that may signal a problem, and have been properly cared for by the breeder.

Cats

Perhaps you have decided to adopt a cat from a shelter. If a kitten is chosen for your kids, keep in mind that although they are very playful and energetic, they will need some training.  If you choose an adult cat, it’s a good idea to ask the people at the shelter where the cat came from; how it interacts with other animals; and its overall health.  In either scenario, cats are very kid friendly and the bond that develops cannot be broken.

Note: Before adopting a cat, ensure that the kids are not allergic to cat dander.

No matter what type of pet you choose for your kids, the first order of business is to discuss responsibility and care of the pet.  Too often, some kids get too rough with their pets which results in an unwelcome bite.

Although fish are easy to maintain, dogs, cats, hamsters, gerbils, and guinea pigs will be handled by the kids on a frequent basis.  Teaching them the proper way to interact with these pets not only provides a fun experience, but affords kids the opportunity to learn about different breeds, species, and characteristics which can later encourage them to learn more about other species.