I know pets are awesome, they cuddle and love you no matter what, but they are also an awesome responsibility. Which is why you should probably wait to get a pet until you are completely ready and can put up a fight against these 5 reasons why you should wait.
When I originally published this post in Feb. 2015, it was title – “Why I Don’t Have a Pet” seeing as I now have both a dog and a cat, I thought I should get this post updated. There were several reasons why I waited to get a pet, even though I REALLY wanted one.
So I get it, you may be dying to get a furry friend, but hear me out before you head to the nearest shelter. Here are 5 reasons you need to wait to get a pet:
1. Pets are a Big Responsibility
That little four-legged friend is entirely dependent on you. It needs you for food, shelter, and hygiene purposes (baths and cleaning up after it). More than that, you are responsible for them for the rest of their lives. If you aren’t willing to commit to having them in your family until they pass away, then you shouldn’t be getting a pet. There are very few exceptions. I
honestly don’t understand people who get an animal and then get rid of it because they decided to move somewhere that doesn’t allow pets. In my opinion, if you have a pet, then moving somewhere that doesn’t allow them is a nonstarter, you don’t move there. Period.
One of the reasons I waited to get a pet was because of the job I had. I traveled constantly, which meant I had an irregular schedule. At the time I would not have been able to provide a consistent program for the animal, which is especially important in the early days of ownership. Being gone for an indeterminable number of hours wouldn’t have been fair to the four-legged friend in my care.
2. Pets are Expensive
Whether it is just paying for the pet and the necessary registration and shots or emergency surgery when they eat a dish towel (my dog nephew’s present to my sister for Christmas 2014), pets are expensive.
Not to mention the cost of replacing the many things they are capable of destroying, including the deposit you may lose if you happen to rent (which I do). It is one thing to be prepared to pay your medical bills that pop up unexpectedly, but to be ready to pay for unexpected medical expenses for your pet is another story.
Then there is also the daily costs of feeding and grooming. Fun Fact in the first two months of getting my sweet dog Lucy, I dropped about $500 on the vet because she was sick and we had trouble figuring out what was wrong.
3. Pets Live a Long Time
Depending on the animal, they can live a long time. A dog usually lives about 10-15 years and cats can live in the vicinity of 20 years. Unless you were to get an older pet, you could expect to have this animal in your life for many years to come.
Make sure you are prepared for that kind of commitment otherwise it’s just not fair to the animal. If you can’t commit to having the animal for their entire life, you shouldn’t get a pet. A pet becomes part of your family and you are scum if you abandon them. Harsh words, but I stand by them.
4. Pets Need Space
The size of the pet will determine the amount of space they require. Additionally, where you live might dictate the size of the animal you can get. For example, my apartment complex has an 80 lb limit on pets. I would like to eventually rescue a pit mix, they are pretty sizeable dogs, so that dog would need plenty of space both indoors and out.
I don’t currently live somewhere with an enclosed yard. Until I do, getting a pix mix is a no go. However, my Lucy dog is just right for apartment living, it helps that the apartment complex dog park is right outside.
5. You Can Get a Pet Fix Elsewhere.
As much as you may want a puppy, you can get pet fixes through friends or side hustles. For me, this is especially true when rugby season started up; I don’t know why but rugby people seem also to be dog people. As such there are always doggies to play with at practices and games (when not practicing or playing).
Pet sitting is a great side hustle, whether for friends, family or through a service such as Rover.com. For those of you that don’t know, Rover.com is an online service to help pet owners find sitters, some of the benefits include pet insurance and a simple online booking process.
If you are interested in learning more check out my review of Rover.com. All in all, when I feel the urge to get a pet I can usually deter it with a pet fix of some sort which is why I managed to resist getting a pet for so long
Wrapping it Up with a Bow on Top
This post isn’t meant to prevent you from ever getting a pet. Rather I just wanted to make sure you are really ready for the responsibility and cost of a pet. Also to make sure you in a good place to provide an appropriate and loving home for the animal.
As someone with two pets, I can say they come with a lot of a responsibility but they also come with a lot of rewards. They give great cuddles, make me laugh, and have had just an all-around great impact on both my physical and emotional health.
How about you, do you have any pets? If not what are your reasons for not getting a pet?
Side Hustle Alert
Rover is a website that connects pet sitters with pet owners. I did a video tutorial on how to use the site as pet sitter and the accompanying post goes over what makes Rover a great side hustle. Read and watch the post or get started petsitting.