Around 1755-1760 in New England (probably Boston MA), a well-to-do boy and girl stand very politely as Mr. Badger paints their portrait. The little girl in yellow has a "teething coral," which were commonly given to children young enough to be cutting teeth, and actually made of coral. (Doesn't that sound like it would hurt?)
What we really want to see is the boy's prize. It's a squirrel on a chain, perched as if on a shelf due to the painter's limited technical ability. You see this stiff, collage-like quality a lot in early American painting, and I think it has its own charms. As for why the squirrel had to be on a chain, instead of a ribbon or such soft thing, remember squirrels open nuts with those teeth of theirs. It's got to be metal to keep your squirrel handy. Extra prize: read this very fine and interesting article I've found on "wild" Colonial American pets.
This oil painting is attributed to Joseph Badger (1707-1765).