Using your iOS Device to prepare your Kids for Pet Responsibility

There is no doubt that owning a pet is a huge responsibility. Even something as small as a fish needs a fair amount of TLC. It is easy to talk about the responsibility of owning a pet, but the reality of it can be an entirely different thing for children. Luckily there are a number of virtual pet games that will help introduce your children to the world of pet care. It can be difficult to find the perfect one for your child, especially when a lot of them are focused on building a pet shop versus actual pet care. I have come up with a few of the best for aiding your kids in preparing for a pet. 

Egg Baby (Free)

iPhone Screenshot 1

Master your iPhone in one minute a day:

Sign up to iPhone Life's Tip of the Day Newsletter and we'll send you a tip each day to save time and get the most out of your iPhone or iPad.

This is like the old home economics project on steroids. Instead of just making sure the egg doesn’t break, you are actually treating your egg like a baby. This is not a game that your kids can just check into whenever they feel like some fun; your egg can get really sick and even die if you don’t take good care of it. On the flip side there is a lot of fun involved in taking care of these eggs. There is essential care like feeding, cleaning, and putting them to sleep, but there is also an added element that keeps it fun—part of the eggs’ care is reading them stories to shape their growth. When yours eggs reach maturity, they hatch and offer you a prize for all of your hard work. 


My Horse (Free)

iPhone Screenshot 1

Not everyone is lucky enough to own a horse, but this app shows you how much care goes into owning an animal of this size. Whether you are preparing for your very own foal or just a puppy, this app is the real deal. Of course there is the normal care that comes with any animal, but a horse takes a little extra care. This app goes in depth into horse care, including proper grooming and cleaning up after a not-so-modest animal. There are even options when it comes to dressing your horse and your rider. All of your work pays off with the ability to share pictures of your horse through social media and winning awards through competitions. 


Pocket Pup (Free)

iPhone Screenshot 1

The Pocket Pup app is an awesome introductory app, especially for younger kids. There is not a lot of extra junk other than keeping your pet happy through food, sleep, and play. The puppy is a light animation and reacts in different funny ways when presented with different foods or activities. Kids are able to take pictures of their virtual puppy that are saved to your camera role. This is not just a fun feature but helps them to achieve goals in the game. 


My Virtual Cat (Free)

iPhone Screenshot 1

I think this is my personal favorite because it has a little of everything. The graphics are soft and fun for smaller kids. In the same vein as most other pet-care games you are responsible for feeding, cleaning, and attending to your pet in order to keep them happy and healthy.  Kids will stay engaged by playing with their cat. The cats can do a handful of fun tricks. For even more engaging fun there are mini games that your child can play. Some are educational while others help to teach about pet care—including the less glamorous parts like cleaning the litter box. Playing games and caring for your pet earns you points and money to purchase more pets with their own special personalities. 


Fishdom 2 (Free)

iPhone Screenshot 1

There are a few games like this in the app store, but this is definitely the best one for kids. The only real downside to this game is that the graphics are a lot less realistic than similar games. Just like in real life, there is not a huge amount of work that goes into caring for a fish, but that small amount of care really matters in keeping your fish alive and well. Other than feeding, it is important to keep your fish happy by creating a fun and inviting habitat, as well as keeping them comfortable with things like proper filtration and lighting. What really sets this game apart for me is that there is a fun and fairly simple mini game to play in order to earn money to purchase more fish and supplies. Other games force you to watch ads or purchase money packs, which just isn’t feasible for a small child.

Master your iPhone in one minute a day: Sign up here to get our FREE Tip of the Day delivered right to your inbox.

Arthur is an experienced freelance writer and iPhone fanatic. He enjoys writing articles about many subjects, but specializes in mobile technology, parenting, relationships, and fitness. Arthur has been featured in many prominent fitness and parenting publications as well as in "A Brave New Word" literary magazine. In his spare time, Arthur enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters, and of course, playing with his iPhone.