6 Surprising Reasons Why You Should Be Exposing Your Babies to Dogs Early

exposing baby to dog early

While the idea of a big furry dog approaching your little one can seem dreadful initially, experts suggest otherwise. Early exposure to pets offers many positive benefits that can help your baby adjust later in life.

If you’re still not buying the idea, these six benefits of early dog exposure should make you think twice.


dogs cut the risk of developing asthma and allergies in babies

1. It cuts the risk of developing asthma and allergies.

Exposure to pets, particularly during your baby’s first year, decreases his chances of developing allergies later in life. Research suggests that the exposure desensitizes babies, resulting in a lower asthma frequency at age 12 to 13 years. (Source)

Children exposed early to pets also have a lower number of positive skin tests for indoor and outdoor allergens. One of the most probable reasons for this is that exposure to dog dander and bacteria triggers a protective immune response in a baby.

dogs provide constant source of companionship and comfort in babies
2. It provides a constant source of companionship and comfort.

Having a dog as a companion enables kids to have an outlet to vent out feelings, whether they’re happy, frightened, or sad. The act of cuddling and petting dogs is also an excellent way to relieve stress as it triggers the release of several feel-good hormones. Growing up, kids are less likely to suffer from childhood and separation anxiety.

Dog ownership also helps kids learn how to trust at an early age. Since dogs offer unconditional support, it’s not surprising to find children who can comfortably spill secrets to their pets.

dogs facilitate learning in children
3. It facilitates learning.

Kids find dogs nonjudgmental. Because of how they perceive pets, they are more likely to be more at ease, even when learning. In schools that include pets inside classrooms, children were found to have improved academic performance, fewer behavioral problems, and a higher ability to interact socially.

dogs keep kids active
4. It keeps kids active.

Having a dog at home nurtures an active lifestyle for your kids. Other than the need to walk or run them a few times a day, dogs also encourage a form of active play. Throwing toys and playing catch might not seem like a high-level activity, but they should be enough to develop your kids’ young muscles and bones.

dogs teach kids responsibility
5. It teaches responsibility.

Kids, particularly the young ones, can easily view pets as toys. They can get bored playing with them, especially when they see something more interesting. However, with proper guidance and teaching, dog ownership can help your child understand the value of life and the commitment it takes to nurture it. Children generally learn from example. They know to give their pets attention, care, and affection from how their parents care for them.

dogs create strong bond within the family
6. It creates a strong bond within the family.

Your baby isn’t the only one who can benefit from early exposure to dogs. The whole family can benefit from it. When everyone is involved in caring for your pet, such as bathing, grooming, and feeding it, the activities become a family affair. Your child sees the experience as something positive, becoming more attached to everyone and the experience.

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