Picking a pet
Choosing the right pet for your home, lifestyle, budget and needs can bring you years of enjoyment.
Choosing to adopt a pet is a serious responsibility worth careful consideration. Consider the following to bring the right pet for your home, lifestyle, budget and needs:
Think twice about getting a squawking bird that might disturb the neighbors.
Double-check your lease agreement for restrictions on pets--some have weight limits that might help steer you toward a pet that won't cause problems for you where you live.
Likewise, if you live in a subdivision and want to keep chickens, goats or a pot-bellied pig, you'll want to check your neighborhood association's covenants.
Desperately want a horse and think you have the space? Check your town's ordinances, or find a place to board a horse before you bring it home. Need a new home? Click here!
What's more, unless your mother lives nearby and can watch Fluffy when you're out of town, you'll have to consider boarding or pet-sitting fees as well for when you travel. Find pet boarding services, pet sitters, and pet stores and supplies here.
On the other hand, if you're looking for a pet to romp with the kids or tool around town with you, a dog may be just what you or your family needs. Dogs are great ways for meeting new people, getting more exercise, and teaching children about responsibility (although, who are we kidding, your 8-year-old is not going to be the one who walks the dog on those cold, rainy nights).
Want the fur but not the work? Cats are notoriously independent, don't need to be walked, and can even be left alone for a couple days with an automatic feeder.
Okay, so you've done a reality check on your lifestyle. Now, it's time to find that pet of your dreams.
Once you take the plunge into pet ownership, find out what kind of medical care your pet needs and stay on top of vaccinations and other veterinarian visits. Find vets here.
Take lots of pictures--puppies and kittens grow up fast. Find pet photographers and artists here.
Finally, remember to take the time to enjoy your pet each and every day. (Okay, you don't have to enjoy the cold, rainy-night dog walks. Find dogwalkers here.
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