Based on reports, about 80 million households in the United States have pets – feathery, scaly, or furry. For these homeowners, pets are a great source and recipients of affection and love. And that’s not all. When these households practice responsible pet ownership, they’ll reap more benefits.
Then again, responsible pet ownership does not only start by the time your pet is welcomed at home. It begins a few weeks before, particularly the moment you made the decision to have a companion animal.
Now, if you have a pet at home, you probably already know this. Pet ownership is a long-term commitment and there are lots of factors to take into account when taking a pet into your home. But if you are still planning to adopt one, just continue reading so you know.
Important Things to Take into Account When You Consider to Raise a Pet
The first thing you have to consider is to find the perfect companion animal. Well, this is no easy task because you have to consider your home size, your family size, the health of your family members, and your finances.
Is it possible to raise a huge dog in your living space? Do you have enough space for a cat scratching tree? Do you have enough space for an aquarium or a playpen? Will your neighbors be okay with the thought of you raising snakes? Will your landlord allow you to keep a pet dog in your apartment? These are just a few things you have to ask.
Finances are also crucial deciding factors. In a study, it was found that the cost of raising a pet dog per year will take more than $2000. So, if you think you cannot afford to spend that amount right now, that is completely fine. You can always consider raising another pet or wait until you are capable of spending such amount.
Choosing a Pet
Finding and choosing a pet is another thing. Based on surveys, a part of the American population gets their pets from shelters and rescue centers. Only four percent of them buy from the pet store. On the other hand, about one-third of the cat owner population gets their feline companions from the street. Fish owners directly purchase from pet or specialty stores. The same goes for reptile owners.
Of course, all these sources offer different benefits. And after all there is no best place to find a pet because everything is subjective to your personal preferences. What’s important is that you put your pet’s welfare above all and make sure your choice of pet fits your current situation.
Important Things to Take into Account During Pet Ownership
Assuming you’ve already found the right pet, it is time that you think how to take care of it. Depending on your choice, it might be very important to have it vaccinated immediately. After which, you have to consider water, food, and housing. For some other pets like dogs and cats, socialization and training are vital.
However, taking care of a pet also requires taking care of yourself. That is because there are some pet illnesses that can be transmitted to humans, such as Salmonella. Don’t worry, though. They can be prevented with basic sanitation and proper handwashing.
Also, during pet ownership, it is important that you keep track of your pet. You can do that by encouraging the use of collars with your contact information or microchipping. Relax, microchips are virtually painless. They’re affordable, too! These microchips help you ensure that your pet can return quickly in the event he gets lost.
Normally, a pet is chipped before it even arrives your home. It’s something that legit breeders and sellers do. Thus, if your pet is not microchipped, you might have to ask help from the vet.
Take note, though. Microchipping might not be for all pets, but it is still a good option for pet owners out there, so they can easily track the whereabouts of their pet.
Long-Term Pet Ownership
Sad to say, not every situation works out for a pet. Sometimes you are unable to take care of your pet properly, but that does not suggest you just let the animal out into the wild. This is especially true if you are raising a wild animal like snakes. You can’t just release it out into the wild as it may go to other places it is not supposed to go.
When you think you are no longer able to provide your pet’s needs, your best option is to look for a shelter or a family to adopt your pet. You can also ask local pet stores if they do offer surrender programs for the pets.
But if you ever consider raising long-lived species like parrots, it is best that you know where to bring them when the time comes you have to leave.
That’s pretty much everything! Be sure you can practice responsible pet ownership before, during, and throughout your pet’s stay with you. Look for the perfect pet, ensure its safety, and if needed, make sure it has a home when you are no longer capable of taking care of it.