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Am I ready to take care of a pet?

Many of your friends have pets and they don't stop talking about them mostly in a positive light. Or there was a family pet in your home when you were a kid, you have nothing but pleasant memories about the time that you spent with that pet. So you start thinking that perhaps it is time for you to take care of a pet, it might be fun and at least there will be something to greet you when you drag your tired body in through your door after a hard days labor.

No doubt about it, taking care of a pet does have many benefits. You will receive plenty of companionship, affection and even devotion from a well-loved pet. And many studies have concluded that pets can be of great advantage to our health, stroking a pet releases endorphins which act in the brain to make us happier, less stressed and more positive. On top of which, pets that need exercising help us to stay healthier.

Yes, pets can be terrific companions, very loving, can be great fun, and are good for us. But along with all those advantages come responsibilities. So you've got to ask yourself: Am I Ready To Take Care of A Pet?

Have you fully thought through what taking care of a pet involves? Yes, you have thought about feeding, and if you a considering getting a dog you have thought about all the long walks, but possibly not considered how many times a day a dog may need walking. Don't forget, that there will be times when all you want to do is flop in front of the television, and times when it is raining like it will never stop. Your faithful dog will still need his walk, are you sure that you want to take care of a dog?

How about cleaning, have you thought of that? Sometimes it takes a spell before pets stop having accidents around the house. Pet hair can get all over the place, sometimes those hairs can take a lot of cleaning up are you prepared for that?

How about scratch marks on your furniture? Cats can be persuaded to use a scratching post but that may take a little time, will you put up with the odd mark on your favorite household possessions?

And how about your pet's health, about the veterinarian's bills, pet medication and nursing your pet when it is sick? Even the smallest of pets can rack up some awfully big vet bills, will you be able to afford them or afford pet insurance? Your pet may need spaying or neutering, do you know how much that costs?

What about other expenses. As well as food there will be the cost of any training, (obedience classes maybe,) pet beds, kennels, grooming aids, collar and leash and don't forget that many pets benefit from a good range of toys.

How about traveling? Sure, for your annual vacation you can get a pet sitter or there is always boarding out, but what if you enjoy traveling a lot. What if your pet ends up constantly being boarded out, would taking care of a pet be such a good idea in that case?

Do you have a family or share your home with other people? What are their views on you bringing a pet into their home? Do you know what kind of animals they would tolerate, you may think that snakes are the cutest things but someone in the house may be repulsed by reptiles.

Are you able to keep pets in your rented accommodation? You do not want to acquire a pet and then find out that your landlord doesn't allow animals to be kept in your apartment.

Do you become really enthusiastic about something and then lose interest after a few months? Could this be the case in your desire to take care of a pet or are you going to remain committed. Pets deserve commitment.

Please do ask yourself all these questions and be completely honest with yourself when answering them. Before you acquire a pet be absolutely sure that you understand what it is that you are committing yourself to.

Be realistic, there is no such thing as a perfect animal. A health or behavior problem is bound to arise at some point and with some pets there may be many problems. You have to commit to working through those problems, this will take plenty of patience, love and understanding.

Spend plenty of time studying up on the kind of pet that you have your thoughts on. Be sure that you know what is involved. Talk to owners, find out what their experiences, good and not so good, have been. If you can, spend some time helping out with taking care of that pet.

If you can be absolutely sure of taking responsibility, showing patience, giving commitment and plenty of love, then you will find that there are few things in life that offer so many rewards as taking care of a pet.

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Wednesday, 29 March 2023

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