Tips On Finding The Right Pets For Your Family
It can be a challenge to determine what kind of pet is the right fit for a family.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals asks that hopeful adopters ask themselves the following questions before adding a pet to the family:
• Why do you want to adopt a pet?
• Can you afford to care for your pet's health and safety?
• Will you be able to spend quality time together?
Staff from the Helen Woodward Animal Center, which expects to reach the 3,000 mark for pet adoptions this year, joined KPBS Midday on Monday with more advice on pet adoptions.
Patricia Carter, a veterinarian with the center, said it's important to consider the types of breeds and the personalities associated with them. For example, terriers are energetic but greyhounds are "couch potatoes," Carter said. Larger dogs will also need more room in the home.
Carter said the varying personalities and needs of a pet are the reasons why families should meet the pet before taking it home.
"I don't think it's a good idea to spring any pet on a family without everyone meeting," she said. "They have to make sure that everyone in the family is on board so that they're all willing to provide the nurturing and care that is desired."
Jessica Gercke, the center's public relations manager, compared having a new pet to having a new baby.
"They are coming in like a brand new baby, and you have to do certain things to make sure they are getting used to their new home and their new surroundings," said Gercke, who has two rescue dogs. One of the reasons this is so important, especially during the holidays, because kids will ask for pets during the holidays."
Carter and Gercke also urged pet parents to consider their surroundings during the holidays. For example, tinsel and ribbon can be attractive to cats but can also hurt them if they swallow the materials.
For more information on the pets available for adoption at the center, go to animalcenter.org.