Pets Enrich the Classroom Experience

• Children with no exposure to animals or nature in their home environment can see, feel, touch and make connections to the wide world of animals.

• Observing and caring for an animal instills a sense of responsibility and respect for life.

• A pet brings increased sensitivity and awareness of the feelings and needs of others—both animals and humans.

• Children learn that all living things need more than just food and water for survival.

• Students will see directly how their behavior and actions affect others.

• Studies show that the presence of animals tends to lessen tension in the classroom.​

Even a small child can begin to learn to care for the needs of another living being. Whether helping to empty a cup of dry food into a dog's bowl, or filling the dog's water bowl, it’s never too early to start teaching kids proper animal care. Of course, parents or teachers must monitor all pet care that the child carries out. Children should be expected to fulfill their responsibilities, but when the inevitable slip-ups occur, we shouldn’t make too much of a fuss; we should just point out that the pet was counting on them.