Getting a pet, especially for the very first time, is an exciting and momentous occasion. Having a cute furry friend running around your home is something almost everybody craves and finds value in.
However, owning a pet isn’t always sunshine and roses. There is a huge amount of responsibility that comes along with it that not everyone is prepared for. Before you take the leap and adopt a puppy or kitten, consider these 4 crucial things that should drive your decision.
Most people don’t realize the amount of time it takes to care for an animal. Caring for a pet is more than simply putting food in their bowl. You’ll need to bathe them, play with them, take them out to exercise, clean up their messes, and more.
You’ll also need to invest quite a bit of time into training them, especially while they’re still young. You’ll need to house train them and train them on how to behave around other animals and people. An untrained animal may become aggressive and you don’t want to end up with a dog bite lawsuit.
Owning and caring for your animal can easily cost you hundreds of dollars each year, and the initial costs can be overwhelming. In the beginning, you’ll need to pay for adoption fees and vaccinations, alongside neutering and other early medical fees. You’ll also have to purchase a few one-off items like bowls and beds.
After this, the ongoing costs of food, vet bills, treats, toys, pet insurance, etc. will have to form a strict part of your monthly budget.
Having a pet is a little like having a child – you have to consider them before you make fun spontaneous decisions. When you have pets, you can’t simply vanish for a weekend away or a vacation with your partner. You’ll need to make arrangements for someone to care for your animals while you’re away.
An additional consideration to make is relocation – if you have ever considered relocating or emigrating to a new country, having pets could make this even more difficult.
Also like having a child, owning a pet is a very long-term commitment. If you’re not ready for an animal to be a part of your family (for better or for worse) for the next few years, it’s best not to get a pet just yet.
Getting an animal and then rehoming them later because you weren’t prepared for the responsibility or because your lifestyle changed or you simply weren’t happy is an irresponsible move to make.
Owning a pet is a huge responsibility and therefore, a major life decision. This is something to consider very carefully and discuss with everyone who would be involved in the animal’s life.
It’s also not a good idea to buy a pet as a gift for someone unless you’ve had the conversation with them and know they’re willing and ready to take on a new family member.