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Pets are part of many children’s lives. Learn how to help them foster strong, healthy relationships.

 

Every parent knows the feeling: It all goes by so quickly. You’re newlyweds, then you’re the parents of small children. Turn around again and you’re empty-nesters. And then … grandparents.

My wife and I are grandparents now, and everyone who knows us knows we’re madly in love with our granddaughter. Give me five minutes and I’ll show her picture, followed by those of our beloved pets. There is nothing more important to me than being a good husband, a good father, a good grandfather — and, yes, a good veterinarian.

From the vantage point of seeing so many children grow up to have children of their own, I offer five things this veterinarian (father, grandfather and husband of more than 30 years) wants every parent to know about pets and children.

Your Pet Can Be Your Child’s Best Friend

Pets are nonjudgmental, loyal, loving and always excited to be with their people. Unlike classmates, friends or even, at times, family members, a pet will love your child unconditionally. Rich or poor, tall or short, under- or overweight, porcelain skin or pimples, smart or struggling in class, popular or pariah, athlete or academic: We all need unconditional love. Pets are also doggedly loyal; a pet will never leave your child because he’s tired or a better offer came along.

Pets Teach Responsibility

Animals need to be fed, watered, groomed, exercised and played with, and they need medical care and love. They’re not like the newest video game or toy that can be enjoyed for a while and then left to be forgotten on a shelf. Although you should never allow a pet to be cared for exclusively or primarily by a child, pets can help children understand how to nurture. Pets need care, constantly and consistently, and they teach children to give to others.

A Pet Can Teach Your Child About the Circle of Life

At each stage of life, a pet provides valuable lessons. For example, adopting a pet from a shelter is an opportunity to talk with your child about homelessness and a forever, loving home. A pet can also offer parents a way to talk with a child about death. For many of us, the loss of a pet is the first of many such losses we will all experience in our lives. A pet can teach your child that it’s important to love and just as important to grieve. A pet can also teach children that compassion needs to be extended beyond our own species.

Pets Provide Physical Contact

In our lives, we are not always sure when touch is acceptable and when it’s not. But not with our pets: They always love our touch, always welcome it. Anyone of any age can kiss a dog or cat and say “I love you!” and nobody thinks anything of it. We need touch, and “heavy petting” is always fine with our pets.

Pets Are Good for Our Health

Pets are life support systems. Pets don’t just make us feel good. They’re good for us. Being around pets in early childhood lessens the severity of allergies, asthma and eczema. Pets can blunt chronic pain; fight depression; lower cholesterol; decrease blood pressure; lower the risk of heart disease or stroke; improve survivability of a heart attack; help treat ADHD, anxiety and PTSD; detect seizures; help Parkinson’s patients; and even detect cancer. Adding a pet to your growing family is one way to protect your child’s health — and your own.

Compliments of: Martha Small | Austin Portfolio Real Estate | 512.587.0308

Original Article by: Dr. Marty Becker

View the original article here

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I simply couldn’t help but sharing this –

Check out this website for some adorable and stylish “Back-To-School” looks for Toddlers – Charles and Kate

http://glo.msn.com/style/back-to-school-style-for-every-age-8498.gallery

 

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Back to school means early mornings and quick breakfasts. Use some of these tips to boost your kid’s brain power and to make the most of his or her school day!

 

Check out the video here.

http://www.delish.com/recipes/cooking-recipes/kitchen-savings?v=1f5bdd40-b914-49b7-91ce-9d49b722e75f&from=en-us_msnhp

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I am watching the BCS National Championship and am mourning the fact that college football season is coming to an end.  I come from a football family.  My grandfather, Clint Small, played for the University of Texas, as did my father and brother in law; my brother played for Vanderbilt.  There is nothing greater than fall football in Austin, Texas.  I think about the time and physical commitment the young men make to be on a team. Makes me want to do the same for my own business.  Get to the National Championship like LSU and Alabama.

The company I work with has amazing tools- it is all in how you use them.  Consider the “Market Update”- up to date information about every zip code in this country.  I focus on 78703.  It is the neighborhood in which I grew up and currently live.  Click to put your own zip code in and find out (or confirm) why it is so great.  You can also compare zip codes.  Are you thinking of moving? Compare where you live now to your new zip code.

I like to set my business up 90 days out.  I know myself and can work with 4 to 5 buyers and 4 to 5 sellers at a time.  Do you need to be on my radar?

Congrats to Bey and Jay! Blue Ivy Carter!!!

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