Updated: Mar 14
At Aztec Pet Hospital our mission is to enrich the human animal bond through quality medicine and client education. We are continuing to expand our client education utilizing social media, monthly e-mail newsletters, “The Aztec Update,” and now "The Paw Piece" blog. We want pet owners as well as potential pet owners to understand that a pet is more than a loving companion. They depend on us to provide for them and that takes real effort, time and money along with great responsibility.
We have developed a list of considerations that should be carefully evaluated before adopting or buying a pet of any kind be it a cat, dog, hamster or parrot.
1. Commitment to love and care for your pet for his entire life.
2. Consider your home, lifestyle, family dynamics, other pets in the home, the climate you live in and then seek out a pet that is compatible. For example, if you have a small yard and an aversion to exercise don’t look to adopt a dog that has to have space to run and needs regular walks. Research the best breeds of dogs and cats for a close match with your needs and desires. You can also consider other types of pets that may be a better fit.
3. Realistically consider your financial ability to provide for a pet. Pets depend on us to take care of their physical and emotional needs and this can be costly. Here is a partial list of things to be considered.
A. Quality, nutritional food
B. Vaccinations and routine veterinary wellness exams
C. Preventative treatments such as heartworm, flea and ticks, vitamins etc.
D. Yearly dental exams and cleanings starting at age 2 for cats and dogs
E. Spay and neuter
F. Health emergencies – injuries and disease that require medications,
x-rays, tests, surgery etc. You may decide to invest in pet insurance.
J. Miscellaneous – collar, bed, bowls, leash, toys, treats, litter box and litter
K. Grooming and grooming aids
L. Proper training and socializing
Emily Kuczek and two of her dogs,
Jolla (l) and Boomer (r)
4. Many pets require attention and bonding time
5. Litter boxes, yards, and cages all need to be cleaned on a regular basis.
6. Many communities and neighborhood associations have rules governing
the behavior of domestic animals, barking for example.
7. Review your homeowners’ and umbrella liability insurance to ensure
it covers dog bites, other dog-related injuries and pet damage. Some insurance
companies may not cover some dog breeds and you may need to consider specialty insurance.
The sad fact is many people do not stop to consider what it truly means to adopt or buy a pet and too often the result is abandonment, escape and breeding leaving many of these animals lost and ultimately ending up in shelters as strays. Owner surrender accounts for a large number of pets being placed in shelters when for one reason or another an owner cannot or will not care for their pets. Sometimes there are circumstances where perhaps someone cannot truly keep their pet and we understand that. However, too often the problem begins when people decide to get an animal but do not think through exactly what that means and the changes that will inevitably come about in their everyday lives. Research, careful consideration and finding a pet that is a good fit for you and your lifestyle will bring many benefits that will enrich both of your lives.