Getting a new pet can be very exciting but there are lots of things to think about before choosing the right pet for you. A responsible pet owner will want to keep their pet friendly, healthy and happy so you will need to think very carefully about how best to do this. Plan the best time to take on a pet too. Its best when there aren’t too many changes happening within your household ie going on holiday, or renovating the house.
Some people decide to take time off work to allow a pet to settle in, however this can still cause a shock to the pet when it has company for a few weeks or days, and then is left alone. Pets are usually clever animals and if you introduce things gradually and with patience, they do frequently understand. Always seek help from a reputable and recommended behaviourist both prior and post adopting or taking on a new pet. We all need help and training in fields we are unsure of.
We advise having a few 1 to 1 sessions with a behaviourist first before going into a class lesson and feeling a little too much. Talk it over with them first.
Consider your lifestyle before making the decision to take on a pet:
- How much time and exercise do you have to devote to its care? Each pet requires a certain amount of exercise. Get that wrong and that is often the base of further problems.
- Do you have the appropriate indoor and outdoor space for your pet’s needs? Some animals can live in flats, some certainly could not. Consider deeply what you have to offer and the considerations of your neighbours and landlord if necessary.
- If you travel or are away a lot who will care for your pet, if this is kennels or cattery, have you researched reputable ones? It is not usually realistic to ask a friend or neighbour to look in on your pet on a regular basis.
- Do you have children, and if so how will your pet fit in with them and are your children aware how to be pet friendly?
- Are you looking for a pet that is independent and requires less human contact or one that is affectionate and enjoys human company? This is a consideration if you work and the pet will be alone a lot.
- Are you in good health and able to care for a pet? If you live alone, regardless of your age or health, have you thought who will care for your pet should you be taken poorly or worse case scenario, not be here to care for it.
- Do you have other pets? Will they accept a new animal in their lives and home. It is so important to introduce new pets to each other in the right way.
- You will also need to consider the average lifespan of the pet you are taking on; while some small animals may only live for a few years, cats for example can easily live to the age of 20. Whichever animal you choose, it’s a serious and usually long-term commitment. Think about the future and whether the pet you have chosen will still suit you in the years to come.
You will need to consider the costs of taking on a pet:
- Initial set up costs – the cost of rehoming or purchasing your pet, bedding or outdoor accommodation and other essentials such as collars and leads and toys.
- One-off costs – neutering, microchipping (although many rescue centres, including Rain Rescue, will offer this as part of the rehoming fee).
- Annual costs – booster vaccinations and health checks
- Monthly costs – grooming (some coats require more than others and professional groomers are needed), food, flea and worming treatments, pet insurance. Pets require a check up at the vets at least once a year. Any treatment needed needs to be planned for. To save unexpected emergencies, Pet Insurance is always a safe guard to ensure you have funds available when needed for those extras. Basic costs of fleaing and worming still need to be considered.
Research carefully the needs of each type of pet you are considering. You can always chat this over with us if you are unsure. Different breeds of dog do have very different requirements and there is much available information on the internet. Research now will pay off in the future to find your perfect match.
You must also be aware that you will become fully and legally responsible for any adopted pet and any of its actions or consequences of its actions.