January 17, 2012

Owner Responsibilities – Are You Ready for a Pet?

Part of the Pets Add Life mission is to spread far and wide the benefits of pet ownership and encourage people to bring pets into their lives. However, owning a pet is also a huge responsibility. The last thing we want is for people to take in a pet before they are ready!

Heather T.'s adorable golden retriever pup, Annie. Thanks for sharing!

Buying Adopting a pet requires more consideration than, say, purchasing a new T.V. Consider buying a pet less of a purchase, and more as adding a new member to the family. In that light, there is an expected level of responsibility attached to the decision. The two most important things to consider are finances and your time commitment, with space following as a close third.

Finances. This chart gives an excellent break down of the costs associated with owning a variety of pets. Could your bank account handle an emergency visit to the veterinarian? Do you know the price of pet food? Be realistic about what you can afford, for the animals sake.

Time. Pets love attention! They also require regular exercise and depend on you for survival. Make sure you have enough time to devote to your new family member, before you commit.

Space. The type of animal you choose and the breed, play a big role here. Bringing a cat into an apartment? Just fine. A St. Bernard? Not so much. Certain dog breeds love to run free and would probably be a terror cooped up in a small space. Not to mention, owning a pet adds another hurdle in the renting process, and this is one of the main reasons owners drop their pets off at a shelter. Be honest with yourself, and think about how your living situation would accommodate an animal.

Any pet owner would agree – owning a pet offers companionship and unconditional love. Who doesn’t want that? But it’s also important to consider the animal, and what you can give them. Remember, just because the time isn’t right, doesn’t mean it never will be!

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