Do You Believe that Children NEED to Bond with Animals?
Posted on Jan 4 2013 at 08:01:03 PM in People
Mary is squeezing Hammy again!
The Canadian scientist, David Suzuki , believes that all children need to bond with animals.
While watching my own kids interact with our pets and farm animals, I realized that children have a deep-seated need to relate to animals. Since I grew up in the city, with ballet lessons, books and only one loving cat, I was as fascinated as my kids with the arrival of tiny balls of fluff called chicks, cute piglets and tiny kittens.We would all gathered around in the barn when they first arrived, not wanting to miss anything. In the coming weeks, the smaller children clambered for one of the older ones to take them to see the chicks. Sitting among the little birds, with the warming lamp, holding or simply watching them was an almost magical time filled with quiet joy.
Mary was and still is my most fervent animal lover. Before she could even walk, she exhibited an obsession to find, crawl after, grab and squeeze any and all animals. It was a passionate love for animals, I would say. She could barely talk, so to communicate her wish to hold the hamster, her hands would frantically open and close and she would utter soft little grunts as she pleaded, with big chocolate-brown eyes, for someone to open the cage. When Rachel realized that she would finally get to hold the hamster, hers hand would literally shake with excitement and anticipation.
Needless to say either I or one of the older siblings had to supervise Mary because she would tend to squeeze Hammy till his eyes stated to bulge out. Then the cry would arise,
"Mary's squeezing Hammy again. Come quickly!"
Once she could walk, Mary would haul the disgruntled cat around but she was happy with her eyes shining with joy. Mary was in heaven, so I couldn't bear to deny her access to her beloved pets. At least the rabbits in the hutch on the covered porch were more placid than Kitty and tougher than the hamster and she was content to simply stare at the goldfish. Although, she did tend to over feed them. I'd scoop out food from the top of the water to use for the next few feedings.
The Canadian scientist, David Suzuki , believes that all children need to bond with animals and if they haven't the chance to connect with real animals then they will turn their attention to stuffed or cartoon animals to try to fulfil that inborn desire. He calls it a "grotesque" substitution. I think there is a lot of truth to Suzuki's idea. Animals are part of creation and we need to touch the earth, plants and animals as well as other people to grow into well-adjusted adults.
I agree with Suzuki, do you?