Do Homework Before You Adopt A Pet
The prospect of welcoming a new pet into our homes is an exciting one. But it’s also pretty complex. For those of us who already have a pet it’s important to work out a successful strategy for making initial introductions. And children in the home represent another dynamic that must be considered.
Here are a few other things to give serious consideration before making your final decision about bringing home a pet:
1. Adopting a pet is big responsibility — It often requires a commitment of a decade or longer (10 to 15 years for dogs and up to 20 years for cats). If your job requires you to work long hours or irregular shifts it may not be a good idea to bring home a dog. After all, they will rely on you for everything from food and water to hygiene and exercise. College students too may want to postpone adopting a pet until they have a predictable schedule that can accommodate the needs of a pet.
2. Pets are expensive — The initial adoption fee or price tag is just the beginning. A dog will require registration fees, vaccinations and food. You may have to replace belongings your pooch unexpectedly destroys or damages. Additionally, routine and unexpected veterinary visits will rack up costs. And if your pet ends up with a chronic illness (like two of mine) as he or she ages you may have to visit your vet a few times a month. Pet insurance is something to give serious consideration. The cost of grooming and canine obedience lessons will also need to be budgeted if you want a happy, healthy, well-behaved pooch.
3. Pets require space — If you bring home a large breed of dog you will need to have a spacious apartment or home in order for both of you to be comfortable. Ideally, ample green space (a fenced yard) is a good idea to ensure your pooch gets adequate exercise. Living near a dog-friendly park and making the commitment to finding time for quality walks every day must all be considered.
4. Pooches make messes in your absence — A bored dog is an unhappy dog. If you can’t budget doggy daycare you will need to keep a room in your home doggy-proof, which is similar to making a room toddler-proof. Doggy Daycare or hiring a dog walker are the best ways to provide your pooch with adequate exercise and mental stimulation when you can’t be there.
The rewards of having a pet are many. They will always be there for you offering lots of unconditional love. As long as you have the room, time and financial stability owning a pet will be a win-win for both of you!