Tips and Tricks for Choosing Your Very First Pet

written by guest blogger Cassandra Franc

Dogs and cats are America’s favorite pets, but if you have always wanted a bunny, fish or hamster, you certainly aren’t alone! The American Veterinary Medical Association reports that around 36.5% of American households own a dog, followed by cats (30.4%), birds (3.1%), and horses (1.5%). Many of us also have specialty and exotic animals, such as fish, ferrets, rabbits, hamsters, and guinea pigs. If you feel confused by the many choices available, perhaps these considerations will help clear your mind. If time is holding you back, bear in mind that you don’t need to go at it alone. Pet services are ready to make the journey easier through pet sitting and walking, which will ensure you and your pet have a stress-free life.

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Some Pets Require More Time than Others

If you’ve had a hamster or a fish as a pet, then you know that they are rather independent creatures who don’t need too much of your time. Arguably the most time consuming pet is also the most popular: dogs, who require long walks a day and plenty of free play. Before making a decision, calculate how much free time you truly have every day. If you’re finding it hard to get six hours of sleep a day, where will you find the extra hour a day to ensure your dog gets the workout it needs? Dogs aren’t the only pets to need your time. If you opt for a reptile like an iguana, for instance, bear in mind that these exotic pets need around half an hour of training a day (minimum) until they learn to control their scratching instinct. Each pet has its particular needs to a good idea is to research on the needs of each and ask friends with your pet of choice what keeping their pet healthy and happy involves.

Consider Pet Sitting

If you are a busy executive and you have a dog or cat, C&G Pet Sitting can help you work with the ease of mind of knowing that your furry friend is in perfect hands. C&G can walk your dog, sit it for a few hours, or take care of them for the night. There are special plans if you need their services frequently, so this is an excellent option for hard workers who still want the joy of pet ownership.

Pet Costs

A recent survey of over 1,000 pet owners has shown that pet owners spend a little over $125 per month on their pets, with costs varying greatly depending on your pet of choice. Some pets need just a few essentials. Business Insider notes that a horse can cost around $350 per month, dogs around $140, reptiles $116, birds $114, and cats just $93. In addition to flea and tick treatments (in the case of cats and dogs), most pets need toys to entertain them, clothing for the winter time, and other essentials (including first aid kits for pets who venture forth into the great outdoors often). Budgeting is key before making a decision; when crunching numbers, don’t forget to add in pet insurance. This may seem expensive (as it can cost $200 or more for a pet like a dog per year), but it will save you on big expenses caused by illness or injury.

Compatibility with Family Members

If you have little kids, an exotic pet type like a reptile or a ferret may be best left until children are a little older. Even if you are going for a ‘safe bet’ like a dog or cat, make sure the breed or character of the pet is right for a family with small kids. Pets with a patient and tranquil temperament are ideal, as are those with a seemingly natural affinity for kids. If you are adopting a pet, visit shelters various times, walking different dogs and/or interacting with cats until you find one that ‘clicks’ with you and the rest of your immediate family.

Bringing a new pet home is one of the most exciting decisions your family can make. To make the right choice, think of how much time you have and take time to analyze whether or not your chosen pet fits in your budget. Remember that even the ‘easiest’ pets require time, treatments, and other essentials, so make sure you have enough time for you, and a little extra to share with a loyal pet every day.

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