Pets, which are the best friends of both adults and children, make expectant mothers and mothers think. Do pets harm the child? 

In Egyptian myths, some gods were associated with animals believed to protect children. Scientists have done a lot of research in order to put an end to the debates created by pets, which have added color to our lives since ancient times, in homes with children. Despite these researches, it has been observed that they have very positive effects for babies and children in general. After the positive effects of the researches, you can find the disadvantages of keeping pets at home in our article in the following sections.

Allergy and Immune System Development

This topic has attracted people's curiosity for many years and has been the subject of many studies. A 2015 study found that children who grow up with pets have a reduced risk of allergies and have stronger immune systems than children who do not grow up with pets at home. 

Germs, which are the fearful dream of parents, can be carried by animals. Pets that increase microbiological diversity should not scare you. Because when babies and children meet these microbes, it means that their bodies become resistant to microbes by fighting them. In other words, a child exposed to a diversity of bacteria learns to produce antibodies in sufficient quantities and will be able to fight the microorganisms they encounter in a more experienced way and emerge victorious.

Emotional and social development

Research has shown that children and babies who grow up with pets are more successful in social interaction. Children who learn to bond with animals are more courageous and empathetic when communicating. 

In addition, scientists say that caring for pets supports their emotional intelligence as it gives them certain responsibilities. 

Family communication

It was observed that families with pets in their homes had stronger communication within themselves. As one of the benefits of secure attachment, it is seen that family members spend more time together and that this time spent together has quality reflections. In addition, the strong bond between siblings, the fact that family members do not have difficulty in communicating and the existence of a shared common interest contribute to the strengthening of communication within the family. 

Stress and anxiety

The stress-reducing effects of pets on humans are well known. Of course, this is also true for children and babies. It has been observed that spending time with pets reduces anxiety levels and positively affects mental health in children. 

In general terms, we can say the following for children who grow up with pets;

  • Their immune system is stronger than other children.
  • The development of the sensory system increases.
  • Their self-esteem and self-confidence increase.
  • Their social skills develop positively.
  • Empathy development is supported.
  • Family relationships are strengthened.
  • A sense of responsibility develops.

Disadvantages of pets

We have already said that pets contribute to children's personal development and have a good effect on them. But it's also important to know that there are some diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans.

Toxoplasma infection, which is one of the issues that people with low immune systems and pregnant women should be careful about, is a contagious disease. Especially in pregnant women, it is useful to be careful about this infection, which can have serious consequences for the fetus. For example, it is an important precaution for pregnant women to use gloves when cleaning cat litter because avoiding close contact with feces reduces the risk of possible transmission. 

Toxoplasma can be transmitted through cat feces, as well as through poorly washed fruits and vegetables and raw or undercooked meat. It is important to be aware that cats are not the only ones responsible for this infection and to take precautions accordingly.

In order to minimize the problems you may experience with animals, don't forget to limit your pet's contact with the outdoors, have them vaccinated regularly and take care of their hygiene. In this way, you can get rid of many of your worries. You don't have to say goodbye to your pets because you're having a baby!