Growing up in my household was fun. One of my dear childhood memories was of our family pet. I was around the age of puberty when my dad first got us our family dog, a beautiful little puppy. I and my siblings argued for a while before finally settling for the name Billy. The whole time we had Billy around until its demise is a very fond memory of mine. From our friendly bond to its tantrum and, from just a pet to being part of our family. It was not all fun but the experience was satisfying.
The owner and pet relationship can be satisfying for both. There are many testimonies like mine to attest to this. However, for some, the joy of owning a pet lasts for only a while. Not many people have a thought-out plan before they get a pet so when they face challenges they didn’t plan for it becomes a burden.
Therefore if you want to get a family pet, you have to consider some basic factors. Hence, anyone who really wants a pet should consider whether he is willing to make the daily sacrifices needed to raise a healthy pet.
1. Your Motive
The first factor for you to consider is your motive for getting a pet. People decide to have a pet for different reasons. So, if you know what role you want the pet to fill, it makes it easier for you to pick the right fit. For example, a dog is more suited to assist you practically than a rodent. Likewise, a cat is more reasonable for a toddler than a pony.
Without a clear idea of what your purpose for a pet is, you might become less interested in the pet as time passes. As this could be detrimental to the health and well-being of the pet. It is important to note that acquiring a pet as a fad is not advisable. As with all fads, it will pass too. What then happens to the pet? Some are abandoned, placed in a shelter, or even put down.
This factor should be high on your list to consider for your chosen pet. If you or any of your family members are allergic to a particular pet, then that pet is not suitable for your home. Some people react strongly to some breeds of cats and dogs. So you want to be aware of your kids or partner is allergic to them.
A simple way you can do this is by spending time in a friend’s house who has the pet you want to find out about. Besides, do your homework to know the suitability of specific animals and breeds for your family.
3. Your Lifestyle / Time
It is important you evaluate your lifestyle in relation to the type of pet you want. Pets have their needs too. Active pets need a daily physical workout for their well-being. When they feel ignored they can become difficult to manage. For instance, Walking and exercise are both a physical need and a mental spark for the dog.
However, if you fail to provide this it might lead to a behavioral problem. Cats too, require attention. They have a constant need for interaction and play. Therefore, you have to evaluate to see if work, travel, and other commitments can allow you the time to care for a pet. Getting a pet is not advisable If you travel a lot or you relocate very often. As you might leave your pet feeling abandoned.
4. Your Pet Budget
Basic pet care does include food, shelter from the weather, and medical care. Some pets like dogs, cats, and birds can have outstanding health costs, particularly if they get ill or injured. It’s not proper to be in a spot where you can’t afford the regular, and unexpected, veterinary costs for a pet.
Meanwhile, talk to a friend or neighbor who owns a pet to find out what their average annual veterinary costs are. This will help you have an idea of what your pet budget will look like.
Some pets have a high maintenance value, so you need to check the cost to care for them. For example, a dog with long or curly hair needs grooming at regular intervals. If you seek to get professional help to groom your dog it might be pricey. When you know how much your budget is and the cost to care for a pet, it can help narrow your choice to which is suitable for you.
One of your responsibilities as a pet owner is to train your pet to behave well. Therefore, you need to be realistic about your ability, and the time required to train a pet. One of the primary training is potty training. However, there is no single, guaranteed method for success in potty training. So, you need to put in a lot of time and effort into training your pet.
Experts claim there are no bad dogs, just bad owners who refuse to take the time to train their dogs. So, if you don’t have the time to give your pet the necessary training, what can you do? First, you can get pets that do not require much training.
Examples are Hamsters, rabbits or birds are types of pets that don’t need much training. Secondly, you should consider adopting an adult dog who is already housebroken. These dogs are usually already trained, which will save costs as well.
6. Suitable Environment
Pets require proper housing, but not all dwellings are suitable for all pets. Each pet has a specific shelter need. Therefore, you have to provide the necessary space for your desired pet.
For instance, a smaller dog would be better off with access to a garden to use as a toilet or, trained to use litter trays in a designated area inside a house or apartment. Not all buildings allow dogs, so make sure you are free to take a pet home. Also, you have to consider the level of noise from your pet that your neighbors can tolerate.
It is highly important to search your home now before you bring a new pet home. Get rid of hazardous materials and potentially dangerous situations. You will also need to check your home and yard for toxic plants for cats and dogs. A common danger you might carry in a purse or bag is sugar-free gum, these are toxic to cats and dogs.
Having and caring for a pet is surely a pleasure. You and your family can enjoy the happiness and satisfaction pets bring if you pick the right pet that is suitable for your home.
Children can learn a lot about responsibilities and life in general by caring for a pet. I hope you get to pick a pet and care for one using the above-mentioned factors to help you select a pet that is right for you.
7. Your Relationship With Your Neighbours
This is a good factor to consider before you get a pet because there are times you may travel out of town. You may decide to go on a vacation or spend the weekend out. Sometimes you can even travel unexpectedly and may not be back for a while. In this case, you need someone to look after your pet.
A neighbor can help out in situations like this. All you just have to do is to inform your neighbor of your plans and tell him or her to assist you in taking care of your pet while you’re away. To be able to do this, you need to establish a good relationship with your neighbor, so when the time comes, they will be willing to help out.