I love the canine point of view. There is just something about writing about a species that is so incredibly close to us yet their ‘language’, such as it is, is vastly different. Furthermore, dogs experience so much more than we do when it comes to scent that their perceptions have to be rendered in that manner.
If your southern American characters sound like Gomer Pyle, and your Mexican characters sound like Señor Wences, you are probably not doing such a hot job with depicting their accents. Same with a British character who ends up sounding like Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins. Just, don't.
The biggest and most measurable benefit is that it keeps you writing. You can often spark creativity by simply being creative, that is, you write five or seven days per week, and you can fill up that writing time fairly readily. But if you only write three times per month, you may find you have writers' block when you make the infrequent attempt. There is something about the pressure of deadlines or at least the pressure of your own internal expectations. It helps to not have a blank page to stare at all the time.
Shy, quiet, and introverted, Nell wants to be anywhere but wherever she is. Feeling undue pressure, she cuts herself. Like many tweens, she's mouthy at times, and mumbles at others. Sometimes, she's responsible. But other times, she slacks off. Just like any other kid of her age.
The first paragraph contains one of my favorite phrases to write. And yes, I have used it before. But it still works. "... when they came." It is obvious there has been some sort of a disaster. And we humans types are not doing so well. No. Not at all. But there is an opportunity out there. We just need to figure out how to seize it.