Getting Ready for a New Pet

Have you been thinking about adding a new furry family member to your home? Whether it’s a dog, cat, fish, or snake there are certain things to consider before getting a new pet.

  • What type of pets are you allowed to have based on where you live?
    • If you live in an apartment complex there may be weight and breed restrictions in your lease agreement.
    • It’s important to check laws in your state and city as well for restrictions. Zoning restrictions for livestock or certain breeds may apply in your area so be sure to know these restrictions before you make any purchases.
  • Do you have a veterinarian in mind?
    • Research accredited offices in your area.
    • Get recommendations from friends, neighbors, family members, and others who may use an office near you.
  • Have you researched what breed best fits your lifestyle?
    • If you live in an apartment it won’t be ideal to have a larger breed. Some breeds don’t do as well with small children. You can also look into how other animals fit your lifestyle.
    • Use resources such as the American Kennel Club website to research temperament and typical behaviors.
    • According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), 7.6 million companion animals enter animal shelters each year in the United States. If you are considering adopting we suggest doing additional research about welcoming a shelter pet into your house.
  • How will pet-related tasks be split?
    • If you live alone then all pet-related activities, including but not limited to feeding, walking, bathing, and exercising, fall on you. If you live with roommates or your family then you may be splitting these activities.
    • Figuring out who will be responsible for what ahead of time will help avoid conflict once the pet has joined your household.
  • Is your house ready for your new member?
    • Make sure you buy all the necessary supplies for your new furry family member. This can include food, beds, toys, and more.
    • Much like you baby proof your house you’ll need to pet proof as well. If you have a pool make sure there is some kind of locking gate around it so your pet does not accidentally fall in.

Adding a pet to your family can be such a joyful time, so make sure you’re prepared by asking yourself these questions!