Books about Children and Parenting

Children and Animals by Gene Myers

In this book, Dr. Myers explores the power pets have in children's lives. Animals are "coherent" he asserts in that they can be experienced by children as an organized whole. This and other important qualities children share with animals cause children to find animals to be "real." Since they do not speak, children become attuned to other ways of expression. Animals provide a vibrant sense of aliveness and vitality. They're good listeners since they listen without accountability, the necessity in human to human communication that the speaker make sense and they are "honest;" they do not communicate one thing and do another. The natural bond between them and children and the animal's qualities that it shares with human beings and that differ from humans are important factors in the child's development of a concept of self and what it means to be human. The author goes into some depth on theories on the development of the self in which animals are an important part. Also, children are deeply concerned with and connected to animals and this is important in our children's moral development. Therefore, the author holds that our society should stringently minimize the exploitation of animals as that exploitation negatively affects child development. To be truly human and humane we may need animals around us and in our lives. The book, although technical at times, provides interesting insights and may enliven your appreciation for pets as well as the animals in our environment.


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