How to Select a Family Pet

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Selecting a family pet is a right of passage for most people. Eager to please parents want their children to grow up with fond members of a special dog or cat. Yet, in-between their quest to create special memories for an offspring, they forget that any living, breathing thing brings with it certain responsibilities. So, here are a few tips on what to do before bringing home a new furry (or scaly) family member.

1) Be sure a potential pet is safe. Certain types of dogs and amphibians aren’t child-friendly. As a result, selecting them as a family pet is a risk. Often, after a vicious attack or fatal injury, a family realizes this fact. No one should have to learn this lesson the hard way. So, it’s best to research the history of a potential pet’s breed or species before bringing it home. This way, no one gets hurt.

2) Crunch out the dollars and cents. Pets cost money. Last year alone, millions of dollars were spent in America alone just for the care, upkeep and pampering of dogs. For this reason, any family trying to purchase or adopt a new pet needs to figure out the cost. The costs include housing, food, grooming and health care. If they are high and a well-meaning family is on a shoestring budget, the match will cause a lot of problems. Either the pet will be neglected or the family broke.

3) Consider your home environment. Outside of man, most animals don’t adapt well in different environments. Therefore, a dog that needs a lot of space to run won’t thrive in a small apartment. Conversely, a snake that requires a certain amount of heat will die in a super cold tank. For this reason, it’s important to select a family pet that will be comfortable in your home environment. If you’re not sure, ask a local vet or breeder.

4) Think about your family’s schedule. How much time does your family spend at home? When is everyone home? Are you the sole caretaker of everything? These questions are ones parents must answer prior to selecting a family pet. Children usually want everything they see on TV or at a friend’s house without considering any of the consequences. So, if getting a dog or cat will just be another passing fancy or a burden because no one will take care it, then the best thing to do is wait until the family dynamics improve.

These are four things that you should consider when selecting a family pet. They will help you pick a pet that will blend in well with the entire family.

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