I wanted to try to put a list together of the things that people should consider before committing to a pet. This covers canines/felines/birds/fish & pocket pets (guinea pigs, hamsters, rats, mice, etc).
I broke it down to 6 catergories: Type, Bug, Room, Funds, Time & Commitment
Type: First and foremost think of the type of pet you want… canine, feline, bird, fish, guinea pig, hamster, mouse, rat, sugar glider, rabbit, ferret, gerbil, lizard, snake, spider, etc. There are many different breeds/species of the above listed pets so you may want to do some research on that.
Bug: Bug the heck out of friends and family – they are going to be the most honest with you about the pros and cons of being a pet parent. Ask about the amount of time they spend with him/her – grooming, feeding, exercise, vet care, training, etc. Obviously some pets don’t need training, but if they do ask how long it took.
Room: Make sure to consider if you have enough room for them, such that kitten/puppy is cute now, but will they have enough room when they get bigger? There are of course pets that don’t get bigger such as guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rats, rabbits & ferrets will you have a big enough cage for them to be able to get around? What about taking them outside in a run? If you rent, what is the pet policy? A lot of apartment complexs/houses have management companies that have restrictions on the type of pet, limit to how many, require pet rent and/or a deposit.
Funds: Next is funds, do you have the money to buy their supplies such as the initial set up for a cage for a small pet, food/water dishes, toys, collar/leash, etc? What about getting food on a regular basis? Training (if needed)?
Time: Time do you honestly have the time to commit to a pet? Are you often working long hours? Going on trips? Or are you a homebody?
Commitment: The final thing to consider is are you able to make the commitment to a pet. If your living situation changed are you honestly going to take them with you? Because having a pet is like having a child, you’re their protection, provider of food/shelter & love.
A few other things worth mentioning:
Please, please adopt. There are many shelters that are overflowing with pets.. so if you adopt one you are making a difference for that pet.
Black cats are least likely to be adopted because of superstition, they are really wonderful cats so if you are looking please consider taking a black cat.
Consider taking a blind, deaf, three legged, FIV+, or otherwise “different” pet. They may seem like extra work (and sometimes they are) but they have so much love to give.
Elderly pets need homes too!
And that’s it! Let me know what you think in the comments!