There’s no denying that most people find pets and most animals to be very cute, and we’ve probably been surrounded by them in some capacity during our lives – whether you grew up in a home with pets or knew some people who had them, pets are a big part of life in many countries, and so it’s a pretty normal thing to consider getting a pet.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re single and living in the city or whether you’re raising a family in the country, although people might have opinions, neither location or lifestyle is a good indicator of how ready you are for a pet or whether you’ll be a good pet owner.
Since there are so many factors that go into this, we’ve included a list of things you should consider before getting a pet so that you can see if this is the right decision for you.
Your reasons for wanting a pet:
It’s extremely sad, but unfortunately not uncommon for people to get pets as a sort of status symbol or cute accessory, this is especially the case with certain breeds of dogs that may be considered the more popular or trendy at the moment.
Whilst this alone has no bearing on how much they love and care for their pets, it’s certainly not the right reason to get one. Animals are living creatures with feelings and emotions who deserve to be treated with love and respect by their owners, and not used as a means to boost egos.
So, before deciding whether you’re ready to make the commitment to really raising a pet, it’s important to get honest with yourself about the reasons for wanting one, and if you feel like they’re good reasons, then you should consider looking for a pet to adopt.
If your lifestyle allows for a pet:
Having a pet is a big commitment and they take a lot of work to ensure they’re properly cared for and have everything they need – not just cute little balls of fluff that provide fun and snuggles. When deciding whether or not to get a pet, it’s not just as simple as looking at whether you have a garden or not, because you can still walk a dog from an apartment in the city, and still not have enough time to take one for a walk when you live in a country house with a huge garden.
What it really comes down to is how much time you have available to dedicate to caring for your pet. If you travel for work every other week, work irregular hours, or just in general like to get up and go whenever you want, then you may have to face up to the fact that a pet maybe isn’t for you because it simply wouldn’t be fair to them, and you’d also have to plan your life around the pet if you want to care for them properly.
If you can afford it:
Pets definitely don’t come cheap, and this isn’t even when thinking about buying a pet instead of adopting one, it’s about all the other associated costs, such as food, vet bills, grooming, and pet insurance that can all mount up.
Vets bills and pet insurance specifically can be a bit of a shock to pet owners, and the premiums on pet insurance will also tend to increase as the pets age.
Of course, in this world driven by technology, there’s a lot of information out there from places like Senior Cat Wellness that can provide you with lots of tips and information for how to care for your pets and keep them as healthy as possible even as they advance into their senior ages.
If your home is suitable for a pet:
All animals are naturally born into the wild, and even though we’ve successfully domesticated many of them, they still have a lot of energy and need space to run around, so it’s not fair for a pet to be kept within a tiny apartment if they’re not able to get outside enough to burn off their energy and get the exercise and fresh air needed to support their healthy growth and development.
If you can cope when a pet dies:
For anyone who’s ever had a pet that died, they understand just how heartbreaking the loss can be – and it really doesn’t matter if they were just getting old and it was the kinder thing to have them put to sleep or if they were killed as a result of an accident, because pets truly become part of our family and we develop very close emotional bonds and attachments to them.
Many people who have lost a first pet will actually never get another because the pain of losing them was just too much and they don’t want to endure that again.
Although, many people also believe they won’t be able to, they do end up later adopting another pet later down the road because they also know the joy and love that a pet can bring, and although they would never forget their pet who died or do anything to betray their memory, they feel that adopting an animal who needs a loving home is the right thing to do.
When making the decision to get a pet, you need to be aware that you will likely have to deal with the loss of them one day, and as long as you don’t allow that thought to block out the many years of fun, love and joy you’ll have with your pet, then it’s perhaps a good idea for you to consider bringing a pet into your home.
Check before if you have allergies:
Many people have allergies to animals like cats and dogs, and whilst some already know, a lot of them don’t actually find it out until they bring their pet home, and are then faced with the devastating decision of having to find another home for their pet.
This is hard for everyone involved, but is most devastating, disruptive, stressful and unfair for the pet.
If you’re considering getting a pet and aren’t sure if you’re possibly allergic, then it’s a good idea to go and get tested by an allergist. Even if you don’t think you have allergies, it’s still better to take the precaution before bringing a pet into your home that you later have to give up.
We certainly hope that this post has given you some things to think about when it comes to making the decision of whether or not to get a pet.
As mentioned above, simply where you live is not the biggest deciding factor, and you should really be looking at the various aspects of your life that will determine if it’s practical for you to look after a pet and if it’s fair to them.
Of course, you will always know what the right choice is for you, so don’t allow yourself to be swayed by the opinions of others if you know that having or not having a pet is the right thing for you and for the pet.
Having pets isn’t exclusive to cats and dogs – even smaller animals such as hamsters, rabbits, and fish require a great deal of care and attention to keep them thriving and healthy, and even though they won’t need things like walks, they still need their living areas cleaned, they need to be fed, and they still need lots of love.