While owning a pet is rewarding, be mindful that pet ownership is also a huge responsibility. Here are several important things you should consider before getting a pet:
1. Can you commit?
Pet ownership is a long term commitment. Dogs and cats have an average life span of 10-15 years. Would you be able to commit to them for such a long time? Dogs and cats require a lot of attention. If you feel that you can’t devote your time for your pet, getting a choice is not a wise choice for you. Or perhaps you can choose getting a pet like a fish or as they are less time demanding.
2. Is it a good time for you to adopt a pet? If you have kids under six years old, for instance, you might consider waiting a few years before you adopt a companion. Pet ownership requires children who are mature enough to be responsible. Everyday we read about a tragedy involving pets and young children. If you're a student, in the military, or travel frequently as part of your work, waiting until you settle down is wise.
3. Can you afford?
Know your financial situation. Owning a pet can cost you a tremendous amount. Food, grooming, toys, veterinary care and treatment are the expenses you can’t avoid if you own a dog or cat. After you buy your pet, there are costs that exceed over $1000 which many people are not aware. Please contact us for a list of expenses.
4. Do you truly love domestic pets?
Everyday a scared and devastated pet enters an unfamiliar cold animal shelter and some already know their life maybe over. Animals are extremely intuitive. Many people get pets for their children, spouse or friend. No one should even consider getting a pet if they truly dont love pets. How can you tell if you really love domestic pets? We always ask: is the pet allowed on the furniture?
5. Will pets fit your lifestyle?
If you have long working hours, a busy social life and you travel a lot, think twice before you are getting a pet like a dog and a cat. Pets require attention. They need you to play and interact with them constantly. Solitude can lead to serious behavioural problem. Make sure your pet can accommodate to your lifestyle. Animal size is not the only variable to think about here. For example, some small dogs such as terriers are very active-they require a great deal of exercise to be calm, and they often bark at any noise. On the other hand, some big dogs are laid back and quite content to lie on a couch all day. Before adopting a pet, do some research. That way, you'll ensure you choose an animal who will fit into your lifestyle and your living arrangements.
6. Is the pet allowed ?
You need to check and read where you are living before you can bring a pet home. Many places have restrictions about size and breed.
7. Do research
Do research beforehand on the pet you wish to get. Pet care for instance, require a great deal of knowledge. Grooming, nutrition tips and safety are stuffs you need to know before you get a pet dog or cat.Just google it. You may find tons of information through internet. If you think information from the internet are not reliable, you can always refer to the vet in your community.
Make sure you or your family don’t have allergies towards fur and animals. If you are not sure whether you or your children are allergic to cats and dogs, spend time at your friend’s house with a pet to find out.
If you are thinking of getting a pet such as cat or dog, pet training (obedience training,behavioural training and etc) is something that you can't miss out. One of the basic training is potty training. There is no single, guarantee method for success in potty training. You have to invest time and effort in it. Dogs for example need to be taught so that they will be well behaved, or they will destroy your house and leave a big mess for you to clean up. Hamsters, rabbits or birds are types of pets that don't require much training.
10. Get a veterinarian
Almost all pet owners have a veterinarian they can rely on for their pets'medical concern. Veterinarian is first person you should approach when your pet is sick or injured. Veterinarian are also your important source of information about your pet. Find yourself a trustful veterinarian before getting a pet.
THIS INFORMATION WAS PRODUCED BY SAVE ANIMALS IN SHELTERS, INC. AND
HAS BEEN APPROVED FOR DISTRIBUTION BY OUR LEGAL TEAM AT PRO
BONO PARTNERS, PARSIPPANY, NEW JERSEY