Before You Adopt a Pet
Questions to ask yourself:
- Do you have any other pets and how will they react to a new pet?
- Is your current residence suited to the pet you’re considering?
- How will your social life or work obligations affect your ability to care for a pet?
- Do you have a plan for your new pet during vacations and/or work travel?
- How do the people you live with feel about having a pet in the house?
- Are you (or your spouse, partner or roommate) intolerant of hair, dirt and other realities of sharing your home with a pet, such as allergies?
- Do you or any of your household/family members have health issues that may be affected by a pet?
- What breed, or species, of animal is the best fit with your current lifestyle?
- Is there tension in the home? Pets quickly pick up on stress in the home, and it can exacerbate their health and behavior problems.
- Is there an adult in the family who has agreed to be ultimately responsible for the pet’s care?
- What do you expect your pet to contribute to your life? For example, do you want a running and hiking buddy, or is your idea of exercise watching it on TV?
- If you are thinking of adopting a young animal, do you have the time and patience to work with the pet through its adolescence, taking house-breaking, chewing and energy-level into account?
- Have you considered your lifestyle carefully and determined whether a younger or older animal would be a better match for you?
- Can you train and handle a pet with behavior issues or are you looking for an easy-going friend?
- Do you need a pet who will be reliable with children or one you can take with you when you travel?
- Do you want a pet who follows you all around the house or would you prefer a less clingy, more independent character?
Size Considerations (for Dogs):
- What size dog can your home accommodate?
- Will you have enough room if your dog grows to be bigger than expected?
- What size pet would suit the other people who live in or visit your home regularly?
- Do you have another pet to consider when choosing the size of your next pet?
- How big a pet can you travel comfortably with?