Everyone is so excited when they get their first pet. This is a joyous occasion for anyone. After all, you’re adding a valued member to your family. You are also bringing another life into your home. With this important decision in mind, you want to ensure you are making a good decision for everyone involved. There are a lot of things that many first-time pet owners gloss over and don’t even consider. When looking to adopt a dog or a cat, you’ll want to ensure you are prepared for the added responsibility. Here are some of the things you need to consider before getting a pet.

Cost

One of the things you must look at is the cost that you will incur. The cost of pet ownership is much higher than you likely expect. The first year’s worth of expenses when getting a pet can equate to as much as $2,000. Not only do you have to worry about the adoption fees which can cost up to $500, but then you have to get a lot of other things for your pet including a crate, bedding, food, toys, vaccines, vet visits, and more. The cost is likely much higher than you’ve anticipated.

Time

One of the other things that a lot of soon-to-be pet owners don’t anticipate is how much time they are going to have to devote to their new pets. You will be taking on a new pet. If you are adopting a puppy, you can prepare for it to take even more of your free time. After all, you have to train your dog, take your dog for a walk two to three times per day, and more. This is even more true if you end up adopting a dog with high energy. This is going to take even more time out of your day because you’ll have to go on long walks and to the dog park for your dog to release his or her energy. For those that don’t have a lot of free time as it is, this can be a major factor in your decision. Some pets don’t take nearly as much time as dogs too. You could opt for a fish or even a lizard as these pets don’t require the same level of a time commitment as a dog. Before getting a pet you may also want to make yourself familiar with the different pet care franchises out there.

Space

You need to factor in the space that the pet is going to take up. This is another factor a lot of people tend to underestimate. Obviously, the larger the animal, the more space you’ll need. For instance, if you decide to adopt a Great Dane, your dog is going to need a lot of free space. However, if you are adopting a relatively small dog, they won’t require nearly as much. You’ll only want to adopt a dog that is a large breed if you have the requisite space for them. You not only have to worry about space for them to play and do other things, but also about their crate, bedding, water and food bowls, and other supplies. It can add up.

Restrictions

You need to factor in whether or not your neighbourhood has any restrictions on the type of dog you can have. Some neighbourhoods will have specific breeds that aren’t allowed. This is very common for any dogs on the aggressive dog list. These breeds can include American Pit Bulls, Doberman’s, and more. You also want to factor in whether or not any of your family or friends are allergic to a specific type of pet. If your children have cat allergies, you’ll want to avoid bringing a cat into the home.

Cleanliness

While you can train a lot of pets to be domesticated, it doesn’t mean you can teach them to be clean. You cannot expect a pet you get to know how to wipe its paws before they enter your home. Because of this, you’re going to have to account for the dirt they’ll track into your home. They may do things like pee on your floors, bring pests into the home, and more. Because of this, you’ll want to get a good vacuum and other cleaning supplies to keep your home clean. You’ll need to account for the extra time and energy you’ll have to spend cleaning up after your pets.

Temperament

You also want to factor in the temperament of the pet you get. Some dogs will be needy and some will want to be alone. You need to factor in the personality of your family when choosing a pet. You want someone that can fit in seamlessly. Avoid taking in any known problematic pet unless you have the training needed to help them. Keep in mind, that you never know how the pet’s behaviour will change if you are getting them young. After all, behavioural traits develop much later so you cannot avoid them when you are getting a pet at a very young age.