People who give animals as gifts mean well, but their good intentions often misfire. Giving a pet as a gift usually is an ill-advised decision that can end tragically.
A successful adoption requires time and thought. Like a lot of gifts, animals can be impulse purchases.
Pet adoption is more successful when someone meets a few animals before finding the right match.
Ideally, adopters should research to learn what traits they want in a pet before visiting a shelter and making the important decision of choosing that pet.
Things to consider
While it is true that pets bring untold joy and wonderful companionship, they are a huge responsibility. People who receive a pet as a gift don’t pay, but the gift hardly is free. It means a long-term commitment of time, money and energy that might exceed their abilities. Among those costs are:
- bedding and toys;
- boarding or pet sitting costs;
- grooming expenses;
- time to exercise, play with and train the animal;
- veterinary care.
A better gift than pets
Pair the certificate with a gift basket filled with all of the things a new pet will need — toys, collar, leash, treats, food and bedding, to name a few.
One also can include books on training, breeds or living with a companion animal. Check out a pet supply store for endless ideas.
For more information on this subject, visit www.paws.org/get-involved/take-action/explore-the-issues/pets-as-gifts.
This information was provided by Katherine Spink with PAWS (Progressive Animal Welfare Society) in Lynnwood, Washington.