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Five of the best free animal care apps for kids

Whatever your thoughts on the electronic babysitter, there are certainly educational and entertainment benefits to your children having access to a tablet and apps, if you choose the right ones. If you’re new to the parenting game, there is one thing you need to know before giving your child access to an app store…

Disable all purchases in the settings, these should only be able to be processed using your password - which you don’t give to your child! You may have laughed when you read about a 6 year old racking up a £500 bill in half an hour, but at the rate those little fingers can tap on the screen, it’s easily done without the right settings in place.

Make sure you share the games together with your child too, until they tell you off for taking too many goes that is. Even toddlers will pick up the swiping movements needed to navigate games and you’ll be amazed how quickly they learn and the joy they get from it. We’ve picked five of our favourite apps for kids of all ages, that teach them about caring for animals. Don’t blame us if you are playing them long after your kids have gone to bed.

Lazoo Zoo

The design of this app is so great, reminding us of kids TV show ‘Hey Duggie’ with its vivid colours and shapes. The app follows animals at a zoo and each one needs feeding. Magical things happen when the animals are fed such as changing shape or sprouting new hairstyles. There’s a Lion who draws a picture in the sand of what he’d like to eat so your child must find the correct food.

Pet Vet Doctor Dog

If your child has shown interest in wanting to become a Vet or would like to try it out, this app lets them work out what’s wrong with dogs and treat them accordingly. The free version gives them two dog breeds to work with and in app purchases give access to more breeds. They’ll need to spot things like Ticks, broken bones, fleas, cuts and rashes, then use tools to diagnose them such as x-ray machines, gloves and a thermometer.

My Talking Tom

Real cats won’t be the first in line to be played with by young children, preferring to observe from up high. So this app lets the child care for their own Kitten, watch him grow and be responsible for his food, play and toilet habits. It’s a cartoon style design and there are games to play with the cat, plus the opportunity to give him new fur colours and accessories.

Tiny Sheep

If your child fancies turning their hand to something other than cats and dogs, this app will teach them how to care for their own flock of sheep. There are lots of similar apps but this one enables them to build farm structures, water the grass and become the owner of a prize winning flock, and even competing against their friends.

Pet Shop Story

Why not mix a bit of retail experience in to the animal care, with this app that lets your kids create and manage their own pet shop. The aim of the game is to gain more customers and eventually upgrade your shop. Choose from cats, birds, dogs and chickens to add to your shop, and they can even cross breed the animals to create completely new ones.