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Getting a pet for the first time is both a big adventure and a big challenge. Whether you choose a cat, dog, or another animal, adopting a pet is a great way to make your family feel complete. While owning one can be rewarding, you should be mindful that it also carries a large load of responsibilities that vary from animal to animal. As such, you should take the time to consider the following before adopting your family’s first pet:

Costs

While the adoption fee covers the cost of bringing the pet home, the cost of having one live with you goes far beyond the initial adoption fee. Caring for a pet can cost anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars annually. Food, grooming, toys, and especially veterinary care and treatment are a few expenses that are unavoidable for most pet owners.

You are now responsible for the dog’s wellbeing, which includes regular checkups with a veterinarian. With pet medical costs being exceptionally high, it is essential to gauge your financial condition before adopting. Most pets require several rounds of vaccines before reaching adulthood, and once they reach adulthood, they still need yearly checkups. These costs can add up, so you may also want to consider pet health insurance to offset costs and cover you in case of anything unexpected. There are many affordable pet insurance plans and policies available to those on a budget.

Lifestyle

Before calculating the possible costs of pet ownership, it is essential to determine whether a pet will fit your current lifestyle. People that lead busy lives may want to reconsider adopting a pet. If you’re constantly busy with too little time to give a pet the appropriate amount of attention, it’s better to avoid owning one altogether or invest in a pet that requires little to no attention.

Choosing your pet based on how popular or cute it is, is probably one of the worst decisions you can make. Pets chosen this way are often dropped at animal shelters when they grow past the cute baby stage and end up being too high energy, too needy, or too costly for the owners to handle. Do your research and get to know the animal you are interested in but be open to changing your mind if its needs don’t fit what you’re able to provide.

Training

If you’re thinking of getting a pet such as a cat or a dog that walks around the house freely, pet training is something you can’t avoid. If you want your home to remain a happy one, you will need to start house training almost immediately after bringing your pet home. Dogs, for example, need to be trained to be well behaved, or they might destroy things in your house and leave big messes to clean up. One of the basics is potty training. While there are no potty training methods that guarantee success, many find that it only takes time and effort to find one that works for them. For those that can’t sacrifice the time, effort, or money needed for training, some pets require little to no training, such as hamsters, rabbits, and birds.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, there are many factors to consider before adopting your family’s first pet. In order to properly house and care for a pet, you need to choose a pet that fits your lifestyle and that you can afford to care for. Even then, there are many commitments to be made when it comes to attention, training, and all-around care if you want your home to remain peaceful. Be sure to weigh your options and carefully consider these factors before deciding which pets are right for you and your family.

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