Petiquette 101: 5 Things To Consider Before You Purchase A Pet As A Gift This Holiday

Nov 25, 2016

With the holidays fast approaching you may be considering buying a pet as a gift for someone you love. This is not a decision to make casually. The new pet should be well suited to the lifestyle, home and surroundings of the new owner. Timbercreek Communities hopes you will consider these 5 things before you purchase a pet as a gift this holiday.

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Give A Pet As A Gift, Not A Surprise

If you have decided you are going to give a pet as a gift, please resist the temptation to give it as a surprise. Of course, a new puppy or kitten with a bow on it is cute, but if the person you are giving it to is unprepared for a pet, it can be stressful for the pet and the new owner. Your loved one may not have any of the necessary pet supplies on hand -- like food, a leash, a good place for the pet to sleep, or a litter box. Also, the animal is in a new environment and all the excitement of the holiday may be too much for the little guy. The SPCA recommends giving an accessory (such as a leash) as the wrapped gift, along with a gift certificate for an adoption. Once the holidays are over and things have quieted down, the recipient can choose their own pet and give them the direct attention their new pet needs and deserves.

If You’re A Parent, Are You Prepared To Look After The Pet?

If you are a parent and have decided to buy a pet as a gift for your children, you need to be prepared to look after the new addition to the family. Having a pet can be a great way to teach your kids about responsibility, but there can be a learning curve that takes some time. Your new pet doesn’t have time for your children to learn how to take care of it. It needs proper care, right out of the gate. Be prepared to care for your new pet yourself, at least at first.

Are You Educated About What Caring For An Animal Entails?

Being prepared to look after a pet requires some education. If you are getting a pet for your children, you need to know how to take care of the new pet. Obviously, different animals will require different care. If you are giving the pet to another household, discuss it with the owners-to-be before you buy the animal so they have time to educate themselves.

Adopt A Pet In Need

Once you have decided to buy a pet as a gift and you have discussed it with the new recipients, you need to decide where to purchase the new pet from. There are tens of thousands of pets in shelters and animal rescue organizations across the country. Why not adopt a pet in need?

Have You Thought About The Cost?

There’s more than just the cost of adoption to think about. Before you give a pet as a gift, and before you discuss it with whomever you’re planning on giving the animal to, you should think about the cost of keeping a pet. There are veterinarian bills for vaccinations and parasite prevention, the new owner’s may not have time to properly walk the animal and may need to pay someone to walk them, or if they travel, will there be boarding costs? You should also know the expected life span of the new pet. Indoor cats and smaller dogs can easily live well into their teens. Whomever you’re giving the animal to must be prepared to commit the lifespan of the new pet.

Pets can be a great way to enrich someone’s life. Be sure you have looked at it from all the angles and consider these 5 things before you purchase a pet as a gift this holiday season.

For more information on Timbercreek Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

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