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Some children with autism or other learning difficulties are better able to interact with pets than people. Autistic children often rely on nonverbal cues to communicate, just as animals do. And learning to first connect with a pet may even help an autistic child in their interactions with people. Not only do children who grow up with pets have less risk of allergies and asthma, many also learn responsibility, compassion, and empathy from having a dog or cat. Maintaining a social network isn’t always easy as you grow older.

Pet keeping generated a commercial opportunity for entrepreneurs. By the mid-nineteenth century, nearly twenty thousand street vendors in London dealt with live animals. Also, the popularity of animals developed a demand for animal goods such as accessories and guides for pet keeping. Pet care developed into a big business by the end of the nineteenth century. Ancient Greeks and Romans would …

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