What You Should Know Before Getting a Cat or Dog, According to Reddit

In the days following Hurricane Dorian, several shelters in the United States hosted hundreds of evacuated animals from affected communities in the Bahamas. But before you decide to do a good deed and adopt one of these pets (or six of them), it’s important to understand exactly what you are getting yourself into, especially if this is your first time pet owner.

On a Reddit thread, users shared their experiences with new pets and offered lessons on what to consider before adopting a dog or cat; First of all, understand from the start that this is a long commitment – at least a decade – and caring for a pet involves significant financial responsibility in the form of dog walking and veterinary bills.

Find a pet that suits your lifestyle

Before adopting a pet, make sure you find one that best suits your current lifestyle, u / DIFF37 writes .

Explore pet types and breeds. Think about what you need a pet for. Do you want to run with him, cuddle on the couch, do dog sports, travel often, a small pet is more your style, do you want an independent pet or super attentive? No [no] wrong answers, it’s all about fitting well … A common mistake I’ve seen is people who want to snuggle up on the couch get a super adorable high energy husky blend and then don’t walk it or enough do this. Both man and dog become unhappy.

It is important to research the characteristics of the breed and understand their activity needs – which are obviously much greater in different dog breeds than in cats – and ask specific questions to the breeder or rescuers.

“It means asking about energy levels, typical exercise, potential health problems, possible allergies, potential or current behavioral problems, diet, grooming, and size,” says Lauren McDevitt, co-founder of Good Dog , an online dog marketplace that checks those responsible for rescuers and breeders, the email said. “Be honest with yourself about the actual lifestyle you can provide for your potential dog, rather than projecting the lifestyle you want onto the situation.”

As we wrote earlier , personalities can be different, so do not immediately write off a dog or cat, because this is not the breed that you had in mind.

Research a shelter or breeder

To avoid potential future problems , always research rescuers or breeders before adopting, as u / DIFF37 also recommends .

When adopting from a breeder, ask to get to know the parents or other dogs from previous litters. Find out how many litters per year they do and which females they breed. If they re-breed their females, consider moving to another breeder. Ask about health checks. Ask for ongoing support as soon as your pet goes home with you … If you adopted him from the rescue service, find out how long he has been around. Talk to people who have adopted from them in the past. Find out how they got their pets and where they are housed. What kind of ongoing support do they offer after the pet returns home? Always meet your pet two or three times before adopting it.

If possible, find a friend who can vouch for a specific rescue, shelter or breeder so you can be confident in their actions regarding the welfare of their animals. If you have any concerns about a breeder and cannot visit their location in person, check out the Humane Society website ; they’ve provided some red flags to look out for when working with a breeder.

“Feel free to ask your breeder, lifeguard or shelter for behavioral and training advice when making a decision,” added McDevitt.

Don’t adopt a puppy or kitten if you don’t have time for them.

A cute month old puppy (or kitten) might seem like a good idea at first, but take a close look at the extra time you sign up for, how u / PunchBeard shared his experience.

First, if for the first few months (about six) no one is home, damn it, 24/7, schedule extra work to train your puppy. And plan a lot of destruction. Puppies are cunning bastards who can ruin a pair of shoes or a sofa in the time it takes you to take off your jacket. The constant presence of someone at home with the dog for the first 6 months makes life much easier. But even then it is a challenge.

If you work from home, a puppy or kitten might be a good idea. However, if you usually work 9-5, it might be worth reconsidering – an older animal may be more suited to your lifestyle.

Save money for medical expenses

Pet grooming is not cheap, especially when you consider food, dog walks, and any veterinary visits; u / XxSicaxX came across this first-hand.

I have spent about $ 5,000 on my cat’s cancer treatment. It was hard both morally and financially. Be sure to read about the breed and all its associated medical problems.

If possible, always set aside money for vet appointments and emergencies, as several users have talked about in the comments. If you can’t afford these visits, it might be worth delaying adoption or looking into pet insurance options. (It still won’t come cheap , but if your pet is constantly suffering from health problems, it will be worth it in the end.)

Understand the commitments ahead.

Once again, before you sign the dotted line, be aware of your commitment. Take a moment to ask yourself if you can handle the pet grooming duties as u / gogojack writes .

Once you decide to bring this animal into your home, you’re done. You must keep them until they die. In my family, we have experienced several cases of rescue, bad luck, and even picked up a small dog on the street. Everyone was with us for the rest of their lives. My ex-mother-in-law chose pets, kept them for a while, and threw them away when they became uncomfortable. Do not do this. If you are not ready to devote yourself to this puppy or kitten for the next 10-15 years, then don’t do it. Period. End of story.

And if you can’t do it yet, try adopting first . Or a pet for a friend. You may ultimately choose this over long-term ownership, especially if you don’t have the time to care for the pet that they would otherwise deserve.


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