Hi stranger! Signing up for MypetMD is easy, free and puts the most relevant content at your fingertips.
Five Considerations Before Gifting a Pet
When Gift Returns Aren't an Option
Receiving a pet as a gift is an honor, but it can also be a precarious situation if not thought through properly. Animals are not disposable, nor can they easily be repackaged, regifted, or returned if the recipient is not pleased. Now that doesn't mean you should necessarily scrap the idea; just do it wisely. Here are five important considerations before you decide to gift a pet.
Caring for pets isn't cheap. In fact, the ASPCA estimates that the minimum cost of humane care for cats and dogs for the first year is over $1,000 (slightly less for other animals). It's therefore extremely important you consider the financial obligation of a pet before you unknowingly burden someone with thousands of dollars in expenses they can't afford.
Pets are a lifetime commitment — and that often means years, if not decades. This is a wonderful thing for pet lovers. They get to love and dote on cute animals, maybe even make them a part of their family. But a pet is definitely not a cheap, quick thrill. Think twice about gifting a pet to someone who avoids long-term relationships. You wouldn't want to inadvertently add to the overpopulation of animals in shelters.
Are you absolutely certain the recipient is not allergic to animals? Does anyone else at the residence suffer from allergies? Allergies to dogs and cats, for example, are not uncommon. Do your due diligence and consider any possible health restrictions before gifting a pet.
4. Housing / Apartment Restrictions
Speaking of restrictions, many Home Owner's Associations (HOAs) and apartment complexes have pet restrictions (e.g., size, breed, type). Your would-be pet recipients may even be renting from a landlord that expressly forbids any pets in the residence. If you can't surreptitiously learn about these restrictions, forgo the gift giving.
Deciding when to gift a pet is almost as important if you should gift a pet. The winter holidays, for example, is just about the worst time because there is usually so much else going on that little time can be dedicated to training and acclimating a pet to his or her new home. Pets need to bond with their new family — and this takes time, patience, and, of course, love.
Additional SlideshowsWhat's New Dog Cat
|8 Things You Should Never Do When Adopting A Cat||8 Things You Should NEVER Do To Your Cat||7 Things You Should NEVER Do to Your Dog||5 Pet Food Storage Mistakes that Could Make Your Pet Sick||5 Nutritional Reasons That Cats Aren’t Just Small Dogs|
|Why Fat is Good for Your Dog||Five Tips to Manage Diabetes in Pets||Top 4 Reasons Girls Love Guys With Dogs||7 Tips to Keep Your Pet Cool this Summer||Five Dangerous Super Bowl Party Foods for Your Pet|
|How to Choose the Best Cat Food||10 Signs Your Cat Might Be Stressed||Helping Homeless Cats||How Your Cat's Behavior May Change with Age||Top Ten Holiday Gifts for Cats|