A study conducted by 3 non-profit pet welfare organizations showed results that support the classroom pet adoption method used by many educators.. Published online last August 2019 the “Pets in the Classroom Study,” reported clear indications that adoption of classroom pet/s, can help improve and develop the social and academic behaviors of students.
Researchers from the American Humane, the Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) and The Pet Care Trust, evaluated and assessed the academic and social effects on students who study in a learning environment in which a resident pet exists. The study was conducted in the school year 2016-2017, involving 591 3rd and 4th grade learners across different schools the U. S. The resident pets present in classrooms were varied, from guinea pigs to small reptiles
Findings of the “Pets in the Classroom Study”
Dr. Amy McCullough, PhD, Senior Research Advisor at American Humane and principal investigator of the pet study program reported that pets in the classroom yielded positive and beneficial results.
The overall observation is that the 3rd and 4th grade students not only showed improvements in social skills and competence, but also decreased manifestations of certain problem behaviors such as hyperactivity, inattentiveness or withdrawal, inside classrooms.
Results denoting social skills improvement were based on comparisons made between learners in classrooms with pets and in classrooms without pets. Social skills and competence improvements noted by teachers, were in terms of cooperation, communication, responsibility, empathy, assertion, self-control and engagement; as well as academic reading ability.
The observations noted by teachers were confirmed by parents through their responses in the study questionnaires.
HABRI Executive Director, Steven Feldman expressed pride in having taken part in an important research program that supports and underscores the benefits of human-animal bonding in schools. He remarked that more children will grow up with firsthand knowledge about the importance of having a healthy relationship with a pet.
The Pet Care Trust, a grant program that provides funds that educators can use in buying and maintaining classroom pets is likewise glad about the results of the study. Jackie King, Executive Director of The Pet Care Trust said that
”This newly published research helps validate the positive impact of our program; bringing us closer to our goal of helping 10 million students learn important life skills, build self-esteem, and to have a positive experience in the classroom by knowing the value of healthy human-pet relationships.”
Jack’s Pets.com (https://jackspets.com/best-wireless-dog-fence ) the sponsor of this guest post, is glad to promote articles that highlight the benefits of pet-human relationships; and the importance of giving children actual and firsthand lessons in animal care and welfare, which comes hand in hand with developing a sense of responsibility in caring for pets.