By Dr. Cecilia Boklin | Doctor of Veterinary Medicine | Kinabalu Animal Clinic
The Benefits of Pets in a Family Institution
Children love animals – their pets especially, and for good reasons. Animals offer a special kind of bond with them, with companionship and often delights. Caring for animals teaches children responsibility and empathy. Along with these, presence of animals in and around the house helps foster children’s emotional, cognitive, social and physical development.
Animals can be a great sense of comfort. Children often turn to their pets when they feel sad, angry, afraid or when they have a secret to share. An animal also gives a child something to talk about and a shared interest with other kids.
Having pets can help build family bonds. Most children and parents consider their pets as part of the family. Animal often becomes the focus of activities that families do together and this helps families grow stronger and closer. Taking a dog for a walk, grooming and feeding them, or getting down on the floor and playing with a cat offer the wonderful potential of slowing down the pace of modern life.
If you have a child with allergies, it is beneficial to get allergy testing done to determine the substances that might trigger an allergic response in your child, and it will help to rule out additional allergies which could be caused by a pet’s diet or bedding. This will also help a family to make an informed decision about what type of pet to have.
Responsible Pet Ownership
The benefits of pet ownership come with responsibilities. To be a responsible pet owner, a family must be able to give a full commitment. When selecting a pet, choose a pet that is suited to your home and lifestyle. Keep only the type and number of pets for which you can provide appropriate food, water, shelter, health care and most importantly, companionship.
All family members should commit to the relationship for the life of the pet. Appropriate exercise and mental stimulation (enrichment activities) should be provided. It is important to also properly socialize and train your pet to encourage bonding.
Hygiene is of utmost importance when owning a pet. Always clean up after your pet and do not allow your pet to stray or become feral. Limit your pet’s reproduction through neuterization, containment or managed breeding. Pet owners must also obey local ordinances, including licensing, leash requirements and noise control.
Pet ownership requires an investment of time, energy and also money. It is very important to ensure that a pet receives preventive health care (vaccinations, parasite control, etc.) as well as care for any illnesses or injuries. Always set aside a budget for potential emergencies. Pet owners should prepare alternate arrangements if they can no longer provide care for the pet.
Last but not least, as responsible pet owners, family members must be attentive to any decline in the pet’s quality of life and be able to make timely decisions in consultation with a qualified veterinarian.
Dog Vaccination (10 in 1)
1) Canine Adenovirus 1
2) Canine Adenovirus 2
3) Canine Coronavirus Enteritis
4) Canine Distemper
5) Canine Parainfluenza
6) Canine Parvovirus
7) Canine Leptospirosis (L.canicola)
8) Canine Leptospirosis (L.grippotyphosa)
9) Canine Leptospirosis (L.icterohaemorrhagiae)
10) Canine Leptospirosis (L.pomona)
Cat Vaccination (4 in 1)
1) Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (FVR) caused by Feline Herpesvirus-1
2) Respiratory disease caused by Feline Calicivirus (FCV)
3) Feline Panleukopenia (FPL) caused by Feline Parvovirus (FPV)
4) Feline Chlamydiosis caused by Chlamydia psittaci.
Lot 6, Lorong Durian 3, Kian Yap Industrial Estate, 88450 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.