How to Choose a Pet for Your Family

When buying a pet for your family, take the time to learn which pet is right. It is a subjective decision that should take a lot of thought and consideration. There are many factors to consider when buying a pet. Review the following list for steps to take if you want to choose the right pet for the family.


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    Consider your finances before choosing a family pet. Some pets are more expensive to take care of than others. With a goldfish, you just need to feed it and maintain its tank, after the initial expense of purchasing a tank, rocks and decorations. Tropical fish, whether they are fresh water or salt, are more expensive and require more equipment, such as a filter and heater. Larger pets, such as dogs and cats need more food, beds and toys. They also need regular checkups and seasonal medications, such as tick medicine and heart worm pills. Consider the expenses incurred on a regular basis when selecting a pet. Remember also, that when a pet gets older or sick, the vet bills are larger.
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    Recognize your family dynamics before getting a pet. If you have young children, determine whether you want a large dog. If you do, then learn which dogs are good with children. If you stay at home with young children who cannot help with the pets, ask yourself if you have time to clean out a bunny or bird cage.
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    Think about the type of lifestyle you lead and whether a pet can fit into it. If you travel a lot as a family, determine what kind of pet can be alone with just someone popping in to feed it. You could also get a pet that can travel with you. You don't want to get a pet for the family that stays home alone or at a pet care facility most of its time.
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    Understand that young children often don't follow through on promises of taking care of pets. For this reason, you may decide to get a pet that is low maintenance. A bunny or bird needs their cages to be cleaned. The novelty usually wears off pretty quickly. You will likely find yourself nagging your child about cleaning out the cage, so ask yourself if you are willing to do that on a regular basis, or even clean out the cage yourself.
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    Decide whether you want a baby pet or one that is full grown. Full grown dogs and cats may be harder to train since they are often set in their ways, especially the latter. Adopted older pets may also have been mistreated and have concerns. Ask about an older pet's history before getting it. You don't want to get a dog or cat that is not safe around children because it has insecurity issues.
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    Think about the training that some pets will need. If you think you may want a dog, find out how much it costs to pay for obedience classes. Training is necessary especially if you have young children in the home. Oftentimes, dogs need to learn that all humans, including babies, are pack leaders.
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    Take your time when selecting a pet for the family. Sit down with the whole family and come to a mutual decision. Make a list with everyone's wish. Go over the pros and cons of each idea. Make sure everyone agrees on the final decision.


  • Do your research on any pet you are considering, and by breed. This is especially concerning larger pets like dogs. Learn about any illnesses that some pets may be prone to as they get older or the lifespan of different pets. These should all be determining factors when buying the right pet for the family.
  • Pick a low maintenance pet first. Give your children an opportunity to prove themselves by picking a small pet that requires little care, such as a goldfish. If your children feed this pet and change its water when needed, then consider a pet with a little more maintenance.

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Categories: Pets and Animals