By Bridget Alves >>>
We’ve all seen those commercials where they show the sad-looking kittens and puppies juxtaposed with horrifying facts about animal abuse, and we’ve all had the feeling we’d like to save some of these precious creatures by adopting one. For some of us, that feeling fades as soon as the next commercial comes on, the one where some sports legend or another is explaining his erectile dysfunction, and how he finally decided to do something about it. For others, the feeling of wanting to adopt a pet persists. Emotions can be powerful motivators, but when it comes to adopting a pet, there are a few things you need to consider:
Do You Have the Time?
Pets are going to require attention – some more than others, to be sure, but even the most antisocial, aloof, misanthropic kitty-cat is going to need you to take care of him once in awhile. If you like to travel a lot, or simply find it hard to get everything done you need to, owning a pet is going to make that a whole lot worse.
Do You Have the Money?
The cost of owning a pet is a whole lot more than buying food once a week and the odd trip to the vet now and again. Think of obedience training, regular trips to the vet for check- ups, shots, shampoo, toys, high-quality food, etc. Even cats and dogs that have no health problems throughout the course of their lives can still cost a considerable amount of money to keep healthy and happy.
Are You Willing to Commit?
Bringing an animal into your home isn’t like buying a new pair of pants. If you change your mind after a few days or weeks, you can’t just bring him or her back to the store and get a refund. Pets are a long-term commitment. You are committing to the life span of that pet. Some animals, especially cats, can live as long as 20 years. If you find yourself in a position where you need to re-home your pet, it can be extremely difficult to find someone willing to take him in. Additionally, if you’re forced to part ways with your animal due to circumstances, it can be an extremely depressing experience for both you and the pet.
Ultimately, choosing to adopt a pet from a shelter is a noble and honorable thing to do. Just make sure you’re doing so with a rational mind. It can be easy for our emotions to overcome our reason and lead us into making rash decisions, and the people who put those commercials together know that.