Adopt A Pet: Everything You Need To Know
It’s not uncommon that a person decides to adopt a pet, usually by superficial enthusiasm and ignorance of what this adoption actually encompasses. The animal is cute and beautiful and most of the times there is a sense of animal welfare that drives people to make this decision. If it is a dog, the idea of adopting is often combined with the possibility of guarding the house, while keeping company to the children of the family which most likely be very enthusiastic to the idea of owning a pet. Most of the time, however, this need is compulsive or just something they saw in a movie and clicked.
Initially, there is a grace period, where the animal is healthy and lively. It is also a brand new experience for the owner. At this stage, problems and responsibilities are often overlooked. Very soon, however, they emerge sharper and end up in a fairly common picture: the animal is left stray on the road, in a remote neighborhood or in front of a clinic. In another case, the animal remains with the owner but is neglected to the extent that it arrives at the clinic in an advanced and far from a hopeful condition for its health and life.
An important responsibility of the vet is to attribute to the community the reality of what it means to adopt a pet in order for the owner to be well prepared and the animal to have the best possible living conditions. The emotional approach of an animal is the most basic but not the only factor in the adoption process.
The animal-human relationship
We usually mention only the positive aspects of the animal-human relationship: the animal is a wonderful companion that offers love in its own unique way asking for little in return, is proven to be a real friend and “pedagogue” for the children but also a great companion for the elderly. The dog can guard the house to a certain extent (depending on training and character). Young animals offer moments of laughter and carefreeness with their tricks and their cute nature. But with all these advantages, there are also several responsibilities that are easily overlooked and are not clearly stated to future owners.
It is, therefore, useful to mention the following issues regarding the adoption of an animal so that the prospective owner is aware of the responsibilities he will have to assume and the situations he is about to encounter by raising and caring for a pet:
The animal has specific nutritional needs.
If you are to adopt a pet, you should know that it can not be fed with meat or non-cooked meats (because of the risk of parasites and other infectious agents). Animals need to have a balanced diet and may need special foods under certain conditions (eg if they suffer from a disease, or if they are neutered). Good quality food, especially special nutrition, helps maintain the animal’s health, but it is definitely an expense you should take into consideration.
The animal has specific medical needs.
In order to ensure the excellent health of your animal, you should take care of its defecation and vaccination. Usually, annually or every semester it’s advisable to have a medical checkup and test its dental care. Routine testing is not a free provision of services, so it is good to know from the very beginning that you have to spend a sum of money to maintain your animal’s good health.
The animal may become ill and require medical attention.
To adopt a pet also involves caring for it when it gets sick. The work of a pet doctor is not free of charge. Many times the owners visit the small animals’ clinic counting on their physician’s feelings and sentiment and fail to count in the actual cost of the services provided to them. Medical care, just as it costs for humans, it also costs for animals. The vet will give you the options available for each diagnosis and it’s up to the owner to decide how to cope with them. The owner must always remember and provide as much as possible for any costs that his or her animal may need in case of illness.
The animal will arrive at some time in the elderly.
Old age often brings along some minor or major health problems. A large percentage of stray animals are elderly animals that either had a poor diagnosis and are ill or have age problems such as incontinence, loss of vision or hearing, bad breath, and general problems that are not an immediate danger to the animal but “annoy” the owner. Your pet, just like you, will eventually reach this stage, and will expect you to have the good will to take care of it and to take care of it in the final stages of its life, despite its minor problems, as he can no longer run, does not play or is not able to guard the house as well as he used to in his youth.
The animal has a need for natural behavior.
Before you adopt a pet, check out the specific habits and issues of its breed. For some issues, there are solutions, especially if you address them at the very beginning, while others concern the very nature of the animal and you have to learn to live with. In regards to the most prominent pets we all know, namely dogs and cats, you need to know the following: – The dog barks, and the cat meows. It is the normal behavior of the animals and it is absurd to expect the animal to always be silent. There is, of course, the possibility of training the dog to some extent, but not the cat.
By communicating with your animal, you can teach him when he is bothering you, but you should not expect to always be quite at the times you want. As our hair changes, so are the animal’s, except that the animal’s hair is far easier to spot. This is mostly due to the frequency and amount of hair they have to begin with. You must be prepared to tolerate hair on your home and on your clothes. Frequent cleanliness and especially the use of roll-on adhesive tape can greatly facilitate the issue.
Some species of animals require coat care.
Animals with a specific coat (eg long-haired) that are left untreated, tend to experience skin problems or difficulty in their normal self-cleaning, or ingestion of large bristles, the “hairballs”. You should definitely be aware that your animal will require care either by yourself or by a qualified person.
The animal needs companionship.
Do not adopt a pet if it is going to be left alone for the longest period of the day. The animal needs your companion or the companion of a second animal (in this case there is an increase in the cost of care, but it is a very good solution if you want pets but you do not have much time available). You should know that when you return home after a difficult day, you have to devote a little time to your pet (for a dog this time is not simply replenished with the walk).
And at this point, animals again resemble children. You have to think about how to care for your animals when you are going to be away for some time without taking them with you. There is, of course, the option of pet daycare, but also people who can come home and control/care for your animals. The key here is the frequency of the periods that the animals will remain alone, combined with the costs that you will need to incur during these periods. These costs involve pet daycare or a hotel for dogs if you plan to be away for a longer period of time. As for cats, cat care and cat sitting are very common as well, despite them being more independent.
The animal needs protection from harsh weather conditions.
Do not adopt a pet if you intend to have it tied somewhere to your garden, rooftop or balcony. Pets need protection from the sun, cold, rain and air, otherwise, they may get sick easily. The small dog’s house provided by many owners on the balcony or terrace is simply not enough to protect the animal. Besides, your animal needs social contact, as mentioned before. Staying outside involves isolation and behavioral problems.
The animal may cause you a health issue.
Like all species – including humans – the pet can also carry diseases if you do not take good care for its health and proper hygiene. It might also get you injured while playing or if it feels threatened. You must always remember that you have an animal that thinks with instinct and not a person who thinks using logic. If the animal has attacked you, look for the reasons behind. It is normal behavior if the animal is injured or particularly scared, or … spoiled (and the blame here is yours). If the change of behavior is sudden, you should visit the vet for any neurological or other animal health problems.
With regard to the diseases that the animal can transmit to you, personal hygiene (house cleaning, hand washing, animal toilet cleanliness) and animal health also ensure your own health. The veterinarian knows the diseases that the animal can transmit to you if it is sick and therefore can inform you about the treatment of your animal and your own protection during this period.
Do not trust every article you read, opinions from friends and family or non-experts in regards the subject. When it comes to animal diseases and their transmission to humans, the doctor specialized is the animal physician. No animal should be left stray as a solution to a contagious disease. The solution is to treat, prevent and apply hygiene rules. Obviously, if someone living with you gets hurt (and here you have an imminent risk of transmission), you do not throw him on the road, but you apply the same measures as those proposed for animals.
The responsibility of animal reproduction is yours.
Sterilization is a method of controlling the reproduction of companion animals. Also, sterilization is a prevention method for various diseases of domestic animals. However, if you want your animal to remain as is, you must take care of: a) the adoption of the newborn animals by people who are reliable and responsible; b) tolerance when it comes to the natural behavior of the animals that may be disturbing to you and those around you (eg sounds of the female cat, malodorous smells of male animals, change of behavior) and c) safe “mating” of the animals in order not to be injured , not to transmit or be transmitted of any disease, and no further increase the population of strays.
The responsibility in case of need for the adoption of the animal is yours.
If for some reason you have to give your animal for adoption, it is enforceable under the law to find an owner who will take care of it and provide him with suitable living conditions.
Getting informed is the responsibility of the vet but also the owner’s responsibility.
Read, get familiar with pet doctors, look for owner experiences, ask about the type of animal, its basic needs, habits, conditions in which it must live, the problems the owner often faces before making the decision to adopt an animal.
Your animal tolerates you. It tolerates sounds, voices, smells, hours, habits (good and bad), irritations, problems, illnesses. Before you decide to adopt a pet, think about whether you are ready to do something about it and if you can give up little of your daily comfort and part of your income to dive into the marvelous experience of owning a pet. The veterinarian is at the disposal of the stakeholders in order to smoothen the differences and propose solutions for the better living of both the animal and the owner.
If you are thinking to adopt a pet but still have questions or doubts, we believe that sharing a pet for a few months can give you great insight and allow you to make an educated decision. Online platforms such as CoPuppy.com make this process really easy. Don’t rush to bring a pet home.