By Angela Desimone
Are you a first time pet parent or considering adding another pet to your existing family of two or four legged creatures? The first thing to consider is what type of animal will suit your lifestyle. Do you want a specific breed of dog or cat? Research into the particular breeds you are interested in is the first step. There are many factors to consider.
First and foremost you need to sit down with everyone in your household and discuss their idea of the perfect pet. Granted this may be challenging but it will give you an idea of what everyone is thinking.
Next you need to find out what type of pet you have room, time, and finances for. You don’t want to end up with a Saint Bernard if you only have room for a Terrier. Weigh all of your options. Make sure to focus on the animals energy levels and attention needs so you will know its basic needs and be able to meet them. A good point to remember is that the larger the dog, the more it will cost for basic care, such as food, veterinary costs and monthly treatments like heartworm and flea/tick preventives. Also consider if you want a pet that will need a regular groomer or if you want to tackle the task yourself.
Consider a rescue or shelter pet, even if you are looking for a particular breed, many are available through local rescue groups and humane societies. There are simply a multitude of rescue pets that need permanent homes and you should have no trouble finding the perfect pet for you. But know that you do not know their backgrounds, especially purebreds, who may have congenital issues due to less than reputable breeding. That being said shelter animals can make the best pets of all, being forever grateful to you for saving them.
Thinking of a cat? Make sure everyone in the household is on board with cleaning litter boxes, cleaning up cat vomit, redirecting behavior such as scratching the furniture and having some sleepless nights listening to the herd of elephants romping through the house at one in the morning. Cats make perfect pets for small spaces such as apartments or lofts.
If you are adopting a puppy or kitten another thing to think about is if you will be able to afford the spay or neuter surgeries they will need as well as their monthly vaccinations. Another good idea is to try to set aside some money each month for an emergency pet fund; you never know when an emergency with your pet may occur, and there is nothing worse than not having the funds available to get the care they may urgently need.
If you are thinking of adopting an exotic pet such as reptiles, chinchillas, ferrets or sugar gliders; do your research! Consulting with our veterinarians is key to providing them the proper housing, food, heat and lighting they may need. There is so much information