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How to Choose the Purrrfect Pet for Your Family! PART 1

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Owning a pet can be an incredibly rewarding experience but you want to make sure that your family is ready to pick a pet that fits in just right.

In Part 1 of our article “How to Choose the Purrrfect Pet for Your Family,” we will help you decide if your family is ready to take on the responsibility of having a pet in your home.

First let’s talk about physical care –

Pets need to be fed, given fresh water, exercised, taken to the veterinarian, played with, cleaned up after, and so much more! Is everyone in the family going to share the responsibility or will one person be in charge of your new pet’s physical needs? Does everyone have the time to spend with your new family pet or are your schedules too busy to stop and take a breath? I would recommend sharing the tasks with your family and having a rotating schedule that allows everyone to have time with your pet. This way, even if some family members are busy with work or school, everyone can be involved in loving your new pet. Sharing the responsibility can also help young children learn about the importance of taking care of a living being as well as earning trust from their pet.

OK- We figured out that everyone is going to help take care of your new pet, but who is going to pay for their needs?

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Pets cost money – lots of money. Even if you adopt one from an animal shelter they will end up costing you money. Someone needs to pay for food, toys, beds, blankets, kennels, cages, bowls, and veterinary care! Before getting a pet, you need to make sure that your family can afford everything that a new pet will need to live a happy and healthy life. Then set up a ‘pet budget’ for your family to stick to so there aren’t any surprise financial costs in the future.  Make sure to include enough money in that budget for at least two emergency vet visits – you always want to be prepared for anything that may happen!

Money is figured out, how about who will take care of your pet when you are out of town or go on vacation?

When you travel or go on vacation you will need to find someone to help take care of your family’s pet when you are unable to. There are many options to choose from including hiring a pet sitter, taking your pet to a boarding facility, taking them to a family member’s house who is willing to take care of them temporarily, or even taking them with you! Many hotels across the country are becoming more pet-friendly and you can even use that as a search option when finding a hotel to book. No matter what, when you are unable to take care of your pet, it is your responsibility to find someone who will give them the love and attention they need and deserve while you are away.

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“This suite suits us quite well!”

Last but most importantly, ask yourself this question – ‘Why do I want a pet?’

Pets can be adorable, sweet, and fun to play with but if you only want a pet because it looks ‘cute’ you may not be getting a pet for the right reason. Having a pet is a lifetime commitment – you are literally taking care of that pet for their lifespan. Thinking that having a pet looks ‘cool’ but then a few years later not wanting the responsibility of taking care of them is just unfair to the pet in your home.

Here are some great reasons to own a pet –

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– You want a companion that you can take care of.

– You want to give a second chance at life to a rescued animal.

– You want your children to learn how to responsibly interact with animals and how to take care of an animal’s physical needs but know that you will end up taking care of the animal quite a bit.

– You have a pet at home that would like a companion.

Some not so good reasons to get a pet –

– That puppy looked really cute when you saw it and you want to take pictures to post in instagram.

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– Your best friend got a cat and now you want one to because it isn’t fair that she got one first.

– Having a pet will totally make me look hotter to the ladies!

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He may be your bro-ver, but he is still your pet!

– My children won’t stop nagging me about getting a pet; I better give them what they want so they will stop bugging me about it.

So what are your reasons for wanting a pet?

Talk about this with your family or roommates or well, yourself.

Please avoid ‘impulse buying’ and do your research before you purchase an animal. You want to make sure that you are truly ready to take in a new family member.

Are you ready to choose your perfect pet? We hope so!

In Part 2 of “How to Choose the Purrrfect Pet for Your Family” we will talk about how to choose the right type of animal to be your family’s purrfect pet!

And here’s a little something to brighten your Friday –

See y’all again soon!

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One thought on “How to Choose the Purrrfect Pet for Your Family! PART 1

  1. Pingback: Why it’s Best Not to Give a Live Animal as a Gift | Houston SPCA Humane Education Blog