Should I get a pet?
I’ve asked myself this question so many times during my “adult” life. A self-declared Animal Lover, a home is never a home until there is an animal presence – It’s some undiscovered piece of interior décor, bringing complete harmony and balance to your life. Animals have been used to overcome depression, anxiety, and in the recovery from PTSD – I’m sure we’ve all seen the viral picture of a young girl in a hospital bed looking over with glee at the baby ducks paddling in a make-shift pond next to her. They bring about calm and a sense of peace. For those that actually have a life and aren’t glued to Social Media:
Now, loving animals and actually being able to look after them is another story. It can never be about “how” much you want them – but “can” you have them. Think of it as having a kid, like my FAVOURITE quote from Eat, Pray, Love – “It’s kinda like getting a tattoo on your face, you’ve gotta be committed.” Most pets last for a long time, and you need to be ready for that – they need you more than you need them.
The secret to deciding if you want an animal or not, is to think about the animal ONLY. Think from the perspective of your future four-legged tail-wagging bundle of trusting joy…
Some of my tips to help you weigh up if you are ready for a pet:
- Can you accommodate me in your home?
You need to take into consideration, the practicality of the situation. Your love for the animal isn’t being called to question, we’re not focused on you – we want to know if this is a home suitable for a beautiful animal. If it’s a large dog, does he/she have enough room to run around in? Do you live on a main road that could be life-threatening to cat or small dog? Ask yourself, is my living situation SAFE to have an animal?
- Can you afford me?
Vet bills are pricey, so are month-to-month costs of food and animal accessories. Sharing your leftovers is like giving yourself horse food and being surprised when you’re not healthy in a month. Your pet needs food made specifically for them and in some cases, given the OK by your local vet. Remember, your pets may have specific dietary requirements that must be adhered to. Consider human allergies or intolerances, give a lactose intolerant male a pint of milk and ask him how he’s feeling at the end of the day.
- Are you ready to treat me like a human?
Animals bond with their owners like we would to our own family. If you don’t believe me, head down to your local shelter and ask the employees to point out a dog or cat that has been returned after finally being placed in a home. They suffer from depression -just like us. Be committed to your new pet and know that you can’t just “give them back” when they’re no longer cute and small.
I said YES to all three questions. On Saturday, I made my way to TEARS and got myself the fluffiest ball of love called Lorde Archibald.
Make sure to check out your local shelters if you have said yes to the three questions above… Remember – #adoptdontshop