Over the past few months, I’ve noticed a change in my daughter’s behavior towards animals. She is beyond excited, eager and curious as to the kind of animals we meet, how they act and where they live. It’s a wonderful time for our family to truly begin explaining why animals exist and how beneficial they are to us.

Yesterday on our way home from doing errands, we stopped by our local farm to visit with some chickens and cows. She quickly perked up as I pulled into the driveway, followed by having a huge smile on her face, which totally made my day.

We pulled in and were greeted by chickens and bunnies. They were so adorable! The farmers noticed we were spending more than just few minutes outside, so they asked us if we wanted to meet their 4-day old baby calf. Yes please!

Our little one was so excited and happy that she could actually see a little “baby cow.” She just stood for minutes as the farmers fed the calves. It was a wonderful, humbling experience.

When we walked out of the barn, I told her we would be back sometime within the next few days. Well, if anyone knows my kid, you know that waiting a few days was way too long for her. As we were eating dinner, she got up from the chair, opened the fridge and started taking food out for the farm animals. I told her that they have food there, but she insisted on packing them some carrots and hamburger rolls (adorable!). So, we did what any family would do, drove her back to the farm right before bedtime, so she could feed the pony and say goodnight to the cows.

As we fed them she asked if I could go to Stop and Shop and pick up more food for all the 39 cows and 100 plus chickens. I said sure, I will get more food for some of them. As I am writing this, I already have four pounds of carrots and two loaves of bread in my trunk. I think you know where we will be tonight!

All in all, I want to educate my child about respecting and caring for animals. I want her to be able to appreciate them and understand their role in our big world.

How have you introduced respect for animals with your children? Do you have any pets, do you go on any farm trips like us?