As you may or may not know, today is/was National Pet Day in the US. April is also National Pet Month in the UK. Therefore, since we are a project that loves animals, it is inevitable that this week’s Top Tip Tuesday is all about pets.
Part 1 Pre-pet
- Research is everything, and it starts at home. If you live with others, make sure you all decide on the right type of animal together.
- What you want to own matters – of course- but so do the limitations of where you live (check with your landlord, consider neighbours, is your home safe for the animal, is there enough space/yard etc)
- If there are small children in the house, are you confident your chosen pet will be safe around them? Equally, are you confident the child will respect the pet, their toys, their space and needs?
- Between you all, are you sure you have the necessary time to commit to the pet to ensure it has a happy life? And not just now, in the summer when it’s bright and hot for lovely long walks, and not just now, in the winter, when you have 2 weeks vacation and are therefore around a lot, but ALL year, every year, consistently and for the expected lifespan of your chosen pet?
- Now you have an idea of what conditions your future pet will arrive into, and what kinds of animals you would like, get on the internet.
- Basics first: check the animals you would like appear compatible with the setting you can provide. For this kind of information DON’T trust ‘ordinary owners’; you have no idea how well they care for their pets. Look for information from professionals, vets, animal biologists, charities, rescue centres etc. If you aren’t sure, err on the side of caution and assume the animal is unsuitable. It will be safer for the potential pet, and save you money, time and heartbreak down the line. If the animal you agreed on doesn’t pass this basic check, repeat the first step above.
- So far, so good. Now’s the time to look at more anecdotal evidence. Friends, owners, etc. But we really recommend focusing on the bad things first. Look out for health concerns, common behavioural traits, that kind of thing.
- If everyone is still positive about the decision, it’s time to get to the good bit.
- Start looking around for the perfect animal to give a forever home to. At PtLoE, we are firm supporters of Adopt Don’t Shop, and would therefore highly recommend looking for a rescue or unwanted animal over one from a breeder, and where possible never a pet shop animal. If people express interest, we are happy to do a whole post about this topic, as it’s close to our hearts.
- Don’t rush, and take your time. Make sure you know all the things your pet will need, and decide whether they need to be in place on arrival day, or can be purchased or made at a later date.
- Collect your pet! Welcome them carefully and gently. Wherever they have come from, it will be a big change. They need to get used to you, just as you need to get used to them.
- Enjoy a lifetime of happiness together with them. And trust us, the happier you make them, the more they will improve your enjoyment of life.
Thanks for reading. We hope you enjoyed it, and found something useful.