Pets are wonderful companions that fill our lives with joy. They provide us with emotional support, companionship, and entertainment. The bonds people forge with their pets are powerful and meaningful.
But it’s easy to go overboard or overlook certain factors which make animals and human children different. This type of anthropomorphism may seem harmless, but it can do real damage to your pet or your mutual bond. Here is a list of the most important reasons why treating a pet like a child is a bad idea.
You may love your pet like a child, but the behavior and psychology of the two are vastly different. Taking an anthropomorphic approach to your pet isn’t healthy, primarily for the pet itself.
The fact of the matter is that, even though they are wonderful, pets do not possess the emotional depth, learning capacity, and intelligence of children. Treating pets as if they do can only lead to problems, and further on to bad solutions to those problems. If you treat a pet like a child, you are already projecting unfounded expectations upon them, ones which they can never meet.
To expand on the first point, when pets are treated like children, a lot of bad behavior is ignored or swept under the rug. It’s easy to explain excessive barking, growling or boundary issues as part of a pet’s “personality”.
But these behaviors have serious underlying causes. If you explain them away from a completely human point of view, you’re doing your pet a disservice. It is much better to face the facts objectively, and get down to the root cause of your pet’s problems. Simply put, if you treat them like children, you will never be able to take proper care of your pets.
Issues with Weight and Nutrition
There’s nothing wrong with giving your pet a special treat now and then. And although pets may enjoy certain foods, it’s important to always be careful. Projecting child-like food preferences unto pets is a dangerous and slippery slope.
Pets and children have different nutritional requirements. And while children need a varied diet, pets are healthiest when fed high-quality pet food regularly. To make the matter even more complicated, pets can develop various allergies, and certain foods are very dangerous to them. At the end of the day, treating your pet like a child with regards to food is dangerous, and there’s nothing to gain from it.
Although they are domesticated, pets are still animals. They do not enjoy situations which are unfamiliar and unnatural to them. When you force these situations upon them, they have a high chance of developing anxiety and anxious behavior.
Regularly forcing your pet outside their comfort zone can make them reactive and temperamental. It’s important to let pets be pets. If you ignore the discomfort that you’re making them feel, your pet’s psychological state will deteriorate. Be fair to your pets