Ten Things You Should Know Before Adopting a Pet

The Humane Society of the United States estimates that up to 8 million dogs and cats are brought to animal shelters every year. That is a sad statistic for any animal lover. Many animals are returned because people weren’t ready to adopt in the first place or they were given a pet as a gift. It’s so important to know what you are getting into as a pet parent. It comes with a ton of responsibility and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Here are ten things you should think about before adopting a pet:

1. You need to make a real commitment to care for your pet for the rest of its life no matter what happens. Pets should be part of your family and you wouldn’t give your child back would you?

2. Do you have time to take care of a pet? If you work long hours or travel a lot, you might be better off with an aquarium.

3. Make sure that your neighborhood and home is pet friendly. Double check the pet policy with your landlord or homeowner association.

4. Research before you adopt! Why do you want a pet? Research pets and breeds that fit your lifestyle.

5. Set aside a budget for your pet’s expenses. Vet care, food, grooming, and medications can get expensive. Know what you are getting into!

6. Learn what type of food, plants, and household items are poisonous to your pet so that you can keep these things out of sight.

7. Never adopt a pet on a whim or because you feel it’s love-at-first-sight.

8. Do you have a yard? If so, make sure that it’s fenced in and secured for a new dog. If you don’t have a yard, consider adopting a small dog or even a cat.

9. Discuss responsibilities with your family. Who will be responsible for feedings? Walks? Vet appointments?

10. Having a new pet will bring you years of happiness and good memories. Keep that in mind because the first month can be a huge adjustment for you and your pet. It might be frustrating at times but it will be worth it!

Have you adopted a pet before? What tips would you give someone considering adoption?

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