Animals are not toys to be tucked under the tree for Christmas. They are living beings that require love and proper care to flourish, just like you and me. While gifting an animal might be well intentioned, it is unfair to give an animal to anyone unless you are absolutely certain that the person wants that particular animal and is willing and able to give a lifetime of proper care.
Adoption is a permanent commitment and owners must be ready to care for their pet physically and financially for the rest of the animal’s life. Before adopting, consider the time and money involved in proper animal care. Will someone have the time and patience to exercise and housebreak the animal? Is someone prepared to pay for food, accessories (such as toys, grooming supplies, leashes and harnesses, and bedding), regular veterinary care, flea treatment, worming, and emergency care?
If you’re looking to adopt a pet, every member of the family should go to the local shelter together to choose the animal, having already discussed the obligations and long-term commitments involved. It is also necessary to be aware of local, state, and federal regulations that govern animal ownership. Most communities require annual licensing for dogs and cats, and many require that animals be on the custodian’s property at all times and that they be spayed or neutered.
Animal shelters are filled beyond capacity. Many of these are former pets that, for one reason or another, didn’t fit into someone’s lifestyle. Many people experience little or no guilt when turning an animal over to an overburdened humane society or animal-control agency that is likely filled to capacity with other abandoned animals. Many animals are simply abandoned on the road or in the yard when the family moves away.
What This Means For You
At FurEver Home, we want everyone in the household to be a part of this decision as well as be onboard for the responsibility and the fun a new pet brings. It’s important for us to see the interaction between our adoptable pet and everyone in your household. We have a lot of adoptables who came to us as strays and we don’t know their whole story. We’d hate for you to find out the hard way that your new dog is afraid of the coffee maker or dad’s laugh.
If you already have other animals in your home, we want to make sure that everyone is going to get along together. We strive to make our placements permanent and successful and these aren’t steps we aren’t willing to skip.
In short, don’t ever give an animal as a gift! If you have discussed the idea with the prospective recipients and know that they have the time, willingness, ability, and resources to properly care for an animal and make that serious commitment, consider offering them a gift certificate from the local animal shelter.