This year, there has been a lot of debate about whether or not getting a pet for Christmas is a good idea. After all, there is no gift more likely to bring a tear to your loved one’s eye than a little bundle of fluff. But recent reports have found that the initial enthusiasm soon wears off and many of these bundles of joy are being sent to the local shelter.
Here are some things to consider before bringing that sweet critter home.
Do you have the time and the money to care for the pet?
It may seem like the initial cost is a big commitment, but that is just the beginning. Not only do you need to buy a crate, food and toys, you also have to factor in doctor’s appointments, hair appointments and pet sitters.
More importantly, dogs require walks, love, and lot of attention. According to the ASPCA, 3.9 million dogs are taken to animal shelters in the U.S. every year, and 20% of them is because the families don’t have enough time. Don’t be a part of this statistic.
Does the person you gifting to really want a pet?
This seems like an obvious question, but many people don’t really want the full-time commitment that a dog requires. A commitment that will last 10-15 years. So, make sure that the expressed interest is genuine and the person is ready to step up to the challenge. This is particularly important when buying for children who’s short attention spans may be better suited for a stuffed animal.
Did you do your research?
If you decide to take the leap, you should really think about what kind of animal will fit your lifestyle. Some people are more suited for small dogs, or hyper-allergenic dogs. Certain dogs bark more or need more room to run around. There are also plenty of dogs looking for good homes, so adopting could be a good option. If you decide to buy from a breeder, consider what experts are saying about these popular brands.
Are you ready for the unexpected?
Even if you plan everything out perfectly, chances are adding an animal into your life is going to mean some unexpected twists and turns. Though certain dogs are more susceptible to illness, there is no accounting for what may happen as your individual pup grows up.
It may seem like a lot to take in, but if you have decided you are truly ready to take on the challenge, a puppy is sure to make your loved one’s squeal with delight.