Getting a pet is a BIG decision. And before you run off to get your new addition, there are a few things you should think about seriously beforehand. Be it a dog, a cat, birds, fish, a rabbit.
I equate having a pet to having another member in my family. And just like children, you’ve got to give them lots of love, discipline (when needed), educating, looking after their wellbeing and of course feeding them.
What Pet Should I Get?
Still interested? If you are, here are some pointers from my experiences having had pets all throughout my childhood until now. We are currently the proud parents of Maximus the German Shepherd and Bo and Rex who are marmalade cats.
Growing up with a sister and two brothers, we were always bringing strays home. Dogs, cats, even a pony! We didn’t live in the country either. Our house was 15 minutes from the CBD of Sydney. A pony was brought in for a children’s party further down the road. My sister was passing by, saw the pony tied up to a fence, thought no one owned it and brought it home. She put the pony in our laundry room and then promptly went out forgetting to tell our Mother about her new pet! Needless to say when Mum came face to face with it literally, it nearly gave her a heart attack!
Image by Animal World
No matter what animal you choose, it must fit into your lifestyle.
Want to have a dog?
Image by Animals Zone
If you want a pedigree, check out the breeders first before you decide. Did they import them or were they “home grown”? There are some unscrupulous breeders out there so it’s worth it to do your homework.
If you are thinking of a puppy be prepared for many of your shoes to go missing or chewed beyond recognition.
Who will be doing the training? Who will walk them?
Do you have the space? Large dogs require large gardens to run around in. Small dogs need less space but still an outside area. And they need to be exercised daily whatever their size.
A dog needs far more entertaining than a cat. Cats don’t mind being left on their own all day but a dog needs human interaction so if no one’s going to be home all day, every day, a dog will not be your best choice.
For more info on the best dog for you, visit: www.animalplanet.com/breed-selector/dog-breeds.html
Want to have a cat?
Image by Pet Smart
Looking for a long hair, short hair, kitten or mature cat? Does anyone in your family have allergies to cat fur?
Long hairs need more looking after and grooming. Again like a dog, if you are looking for a pedigree do your homework first on the breeders. Cats of course are far easier to look after than a dog. You don’t have to exercise them but they still need room to play.
Cats shed hair, so be prepared to regularly vacuum hair from your home!
Want to have birds, fish or a rabbit?
Image by Manna Pro
These beautiful creatures can generally only be found in pet stores unless you want to go out and catch them yourself. Not a good idea. Although fish, birds or rabbits need no exercise, they still need tender loving care if you want them to have a long life. Fish tanks must be maintained, bird cages and rabbit pens have to be large enough so they also get plenty of space.
Image by Dcist
Image by Pinterest
Where to get your newest addition?
I’m all for going to a rescue center as there are plenty of furkids that need a loving home and family. Reputable pet stores have a host of animals you can buy. Just make sure they have all their papers and up to date on their vaccinations. Check out SPCA and animal adoption centres in KL for a number of rescue centers where you can adopt, sponsor or help in cash or kind.
Once you have your new addition just make sure that you:
Find a good vet as he’ll become the equivalent of your family doctor.
Check your house and garden plants. Some can be even deadly to your pet should they ingest them. For more info be sure to read Twenty Toxic Houseplants to Avoid Around Children and Pets. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
FINALLY – Give them lots of love and they’ll give it back 1,000 times in return