You know what is probably happening all around the world right now? Kids trying to convince their parents that they really want a dog for Christmas. OK this is probably a year round discussion.

Parents weigh the pros and cons. Yes, having a dog is a huge commitment. There of course is a lot of training. The getting up to let them outside in the middle of the night. The accidents. Having to find a sitter when you have plans to go out of town.

The rewards though are many too. We know you will always have a best friend. A dog is thrilled to see you when you get home. They also are a source of unconditional love. A new thing that has been discovered is that having a dog also can help a child be better at reading. That has been discovered by researchers.

During this study the kids who had a dog got through reading more pages and they actually felt like they were more interested in the material they were reading. Other good news is that the dog actually made them more likely to keep reading.

During this study the researchers also chose books above their reading level on purpose just to see if they would get frustrated. The ones with the dogs didn't and actually tried harder.

Why were the ones with the dogs able to read better. They seem to think that just having a dog near them made the kids calmer. So they were better focused.

So kids if you are looking to get a dog this holiday season you may want to use this research to your advantage.