Many people, at some point, consider welcoming a pet into their family. Your kids might have been asking for an animal for a while, or you might have had an animal when you were a child, and be keen to offer your own children the same great experience. 

There are many advantages to having a family pet. Large pets like dogs can be incredibly loyal and loving. They can become a best friend for your children, as well as a protector and a constant, comforting presence. Pets can boost mental health, ease childhood anxiety, and ensure that everyone in the family always has someone to cuddle when they need it. 

Both big and small pets can teach responsibility and show children how rewarding a loving relationship can be. They can teach empathy and help children understand how to care for someone else. They can be fun, improve relationships in the home, and help everyone to get more exercise. 

But, there’s no denying that a pet is a big commitment. Even small pets that live in cages need looking after, and large animals like dogs need attention, walking, and expensive food and vets care. When you’ve got children to look after, as well as work and other responsibilities, the idea of adding an animal to the mix can be hard to balance. Here are some things to think about if you are wondering if your family is ready to welcome a pet. 

How Old Are Your Children?

Many people with pets have children. If you are used to caring for animals, you certainly wouldn’t have to get rid of them to have a child (although, this is the right decision for many families). But, if you’ve never had a pet, suddenly trying to care for babies and pets can be difficult. You might also want to wait if your children are toddlers, or have just started school. They might be very excited about an animal, but unable to understand the responsibilities involved. 

However, there’s no right time. There will always be challenges, no matter how old your children are. And you know them better than anyone else. Take advice, but if you feel like your children are ready to own pets, go for it. 

Are They Keen to Help?

Your children may claim that they want to help, but do they really? Do they ask questions about how to care for pets? Have they taken an interest in learning more about what they’ll need to do? 

Get books, show them videos and teach them as much as you can about caring for a pet, even the less cute parts, then ask them if they still want one.

Do You Have a Consistent Schedule?

A busy schedule doesn’t mean that you can’t have a pet, but it might mean that you choose a different one. If your home is often empty, or your schedule is inconsistent, then a dog might not be the right choice. A smaller animal, with a small home, which is alright when left alone for long periods, might be a better option. 

Is There Space at Home?

Do you have room for a pet? Is there plenty of room inside your house for an animal to run around and sleep? Do you have a comfortable space for a large cage? Do you have room in your garden for a house, and a Stainless Steel Wire and Mesh run?  Again, a lack of space doesn’t mean that you can’t have a pet; you might just need to think about it more carefully. 

Do You Want a Pet?

Let’s face it, no matter how much your children claim that they’ll do all of the work; they won’t. Even if they pull their weight, a lot of the care will fall to you. So ask yourself, regardless of how anyone else feels if you want an animal at home. 

What Will You Do When You Travel?

Even smaller, caged animals need to be a consideration if you travel. A dog, you may be able to take on some trips with you. Dogs and cats can have short stays in kennels, but this comes at a cost. Would you be able to leave them with a friend or family member? If you’ve got a caged animal, is there someone who could take them if you were out of the country for a few weeks?

Adding a pet to your family can be one of the best things that you ever do. Many people say that their pets complete their family and bring everyone together. But, it’s a huge commitment, and certainly not something that you should rush into.

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