Choosing a Pet
When you decide it is a good time for a pet, how do you chose what is a good fit for you and your family? Here are a few tips and things to consider:
- Research, research, research! Read as much as you can about your potential pet choice. Bring your whole family into making this decision as it is a long-term commitment involving responsibility of the whole family.
- When choosing the type or breed of a pet, examine the lifestyle and schedules of the family. Consider what changes if any will have to be made and can everyone accommodate those changes? Would a cat, dog or a goldfish or rabbit be a better choice considering the schedules and lifestyle of your family?
- Have a conversation with friends who have the type of pet you are thinking of bringing into your family circle. Ask about their experience and any good advice they might offer you. Get a full picture of the positives and the negatives.
- Speak with a veterinarian when making the final decision. Ask about costs, responsibilities, potential medical conditions associated with certain breeds, trainers, groomers etc.
Once a decision has been made:
- Pet proof your home
- Get references from pet owners you know for a good veterinarian. Interview the veterinarians for a good fit. Go with a prepared list of questions.
- Depending on the type of pet you have decided upon, buy the things you will need. For puppies, kennels, a puppy bed, food and water bowls, pet toys, leash, collar, food, treats are a good basic start. For cats, litter box, litter, scratching post, toys, kitten food, water and food bowls etc.
- Prepare the rest of the family for their new responsibilities associated with this new family member. Who will be responsible for walking, feeding, playing activities etc. Set up tentative schedules so that younger family members will anticipate their new responsibilities and look forward to the new pet’s arrival.
- Speak with the breeder or present owner of the pet so that you can understand any schedules, food requirements, anticipated arrival etc.
Now that you have done your homework and are as prepared as you can be, relax, enjoy and get ready to love the new changes that are about to happen!