Adding a new member to your home can be exciting but also overwhelming, as they are life-long commitments, and therefore the decision should not be taken lightly.
There is a lot of information on buying a pet, so we have narrowed it down to the six most important questions you must consider.
Have you worked out costs?
Pet ownership means paying for food, vet bills and other necessities for your animals. Not only do you have to consider short term costs such as desexing, but the long term costs such as regular immunisations and unexpected vet visits.
Is your house pet friendly?
Not only does this mean gaining approval from your land lord if renting, but it also means having adequate fencing and shelter for outdoor animals, and safe areas both inside and outside your house. The small details such as having holes in your decking are vital to consider for your pet’s safety.
Will you be travelling?
If you are a regular traveler—or even if you have one holiday approaching—you need to consider the practicality of getting a pet. If you are going away next month for three weeks, perhaps delay getting a pet until you get back. If you travel for a few days every month and have your heart set on a higher maintenance animal—unlike an aquarium—you need to make plans for someone to look after them while you are away.
What animal suits you?
Although an energetic Border Collie may not suit your Melbourne-city based apartment, inside lap-cats may be perfect for you! Think about what would suit your lifestyle, location and free time, as well as the animal’s needs. If you are unsure, you can always ask a friend or family member whether you can pet-sit so you can gain an understanding of what their pet care entails.
Have you researched the breed/pet and do you understand their special requirements?
There may be breed or animal specific characteristics that you must know and understand, so it is always wise to do your research before making your final choice. This could include details such as ponies not being able to see thin wire, or pugs and some other breeds of dogs always needing supervision in higher temperatures.
Have you considered adoption?
If you contact shelters or rescue groups and adopt an animal, you will be giving those in need a second chance at a forever home. If you have already picked the type of pet and particular breed you want, there are even breed specific rescue groups you can contact.