Which pet should I choose for my lifestyle?
A pet is for life and when you choose a companion or new member of the family you should think about what suits your lifestyle. If you’re a busy household with children and lots of noise, you need to select a pet that can cope with the chaos. Likewise, if your life is more peaceful a lively pet may not be for you.
There’s a pet to suit every lifestyle – it’s just a matter of finding the right one. If you do your research carefully, you’re sure to find a loyal pet that gives you plenty of unconditional love.
What pet should I get?
There are many things to consider when you choose your pet. They need to be happy at home and fit your lifestyle. A pet is part of the family and needs to feel cared for and content. When thinking about getting a pet you should take some time to think about the life you lead and how it will suit them.
Puppies and kittens are cute, as are many of the other animals in the photographs on rescue sites or other websites. You need to be a little detached and not fall for the soulful eyes and adorable face. A pet is an animal that needs devotion and attention to feel comfortable living with you.
If you’re thinking about getting a dog, you should consider whether you have the time to devote to walking it each day and whether you will be away from home often. Dogs don´t like to be left and can become destructive and unhappy if they get bored.
A cat might be an easier option if you live in an apartment or go out a lot. But cats still need love and can also demand a significant amount of time.
Choosing the right pet need not be difficult if you think about their needs and yours.
How to choose a pet – things to consider
Here are some of the factors that you should think about when deciding what pet fits your lifestyle.
- Space – if you have a garden where your pet can roam freely you can consider a large dog, however, it will still enjoy plenty of countryside walks. Small dogs such as chihuahuas or dachshunds are more suited to apartment living but also need exercise. A cat that can climb trees and explore your garden will be a happy pet. If you live in an apartment a cat that’s used to being indoors will be content, however, if you decide on a cat that’s used to going outdoors it may find it difficult to adjust.
- Age – a young pet will need more attention than an older one. Are you prepared to be up at night with a puppy that’s crying because it’s lonely or a kitten that’s scratching the door to get out? If you have the time to devote to a young animal you can train it from the moment you bring it home, whereas an older pet will need some time to get used to your lifestyle. You should also remember that young animals need house training, which takes time and dedication. A puppy or kitten may also be destructive – how are you going to react if they’ve chewed your best trainers or scratched the furniture? An older dog or cat makes a good companion and will soon adjust to your household once they realise you have plenty of love to give them.
- Family members – if you have children you should think carefully about the pet you’re going to get. Young children love to play with their furry friends and may not always be gentle. A cat or dog will scratch or bite if provoked, no matter how calm they usually are. Choosing the right pet for your family is about finding a loving, gentle animal that will become your child’s best friend. However, you should supervise their time together and never leave young children and pets alone as animals can be unpredictable.
- Work – if you work full time it’s unfair to leave a dog on its own at home. Cats are more adaptable and will probably sleep all day, but dogs need entertainment. You could check if there’s a pet care or dog walking service in your area which means your dog will still have company when you’re out at work. With working from home becoming more popular having a pet while you’re sat in your home office is ideal and a cuddle is a great way to relieve stress between meetings!
- Social life – if you go out in the evenings a lot do you go places where you can take your pet? You might not be able to take your cat to a dinner party but if you have a dog this is a good opportunity for socialisation if your hosts have pets. Likewise, if you spend several evenings a week at the gym or night classes will your pet be left alone or will someone be at home to keep them company?
How to choose a pet cat
If you’ve decided to get a cat, congratulations! You’ll soon have a loving friend to sit on your lap and play with. You may choose to give a home to one of the many kittens or cats that are taken to shelters each year rather than buying an expensive pedigree from a breeder.
When choosing a cat check it is healthy and that its vaccinations are up to date. If you have children take them with you so you can see the cat’s reaction to youngsters. Assess whether the cat is confident or shy – is it inquisitive or does it hide? The important thing is that the cat fits into your lifestyle.
How to choose a pet dog
When choosing a dog decide whether you want to go for a particular breed or a mix. You should research different breeds to learn more about which are good with children, need a lot of exercise or are prone to certain illnesses.
Do you want a companion, a dog that walks for miles, or a family-friendly dog? You should also consider the space and room you have at home. The other point to remember is the age of your children and how they behave with animals.
Use our tips to choose the best pet for a busy lifestyle and enjoy the rewarding experience of having an animal to care for.
To help calm a new pet and get them used to a new home you could consider including the natural milk derivative Lactium® in their diet. For more information on the benefits of Lactium® for your pet contact us.