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Checklist: Are you Ready for a pet?

A guide for future pet owners

Before getting a pet you should be able answer the
following questions with „yes“:

Living situation:

  • Do I want a pet for its own sake and not just as a social partner?
  • Can I currently guarantee that I will be able to pay for my pet’s care throughout its entire life (dogs and cats around 10–15 years;
    rabbits around 10 years; guinea pigs, around 7 years, etc.)
  • Have I learned enough about the demands a pet will place on me?
  • Do I have a clear picture of a pet’s requirements, and a detailed understanding of what it will really mean to be the owner of a living creature?
  • Will I be able to give my pet enough time to keep it occupied and provide it with social contact and exercise?
  • Am I ready to deal with my pet in a positive way if it exhibits behavioural issues?
  • Do my children understand that a pet is a living creature and not a toy?
  • Am I aware that my pet can get ill and that this can lead to illness-related fouling (gastrointestinal diseases)?
  • Am I aware that my pet will get old and that this will lead to age-related fouling (urinary dribbling)?

Accommodation

  • Does my landlord allow tenants to keep pets?
  • Can I deal with the fact that a young pet will often cause damage?
  • Have I ruled out the risk of allergies affecting me or members of my family (animal hair, bedding, etc)?
  • Is there anyone who can look after my pet if I am temporarily unable to (illness, hospital visits, etc)?

Have I calculated the financial outlay required for...

  • Food
  • Trips to the vet
  • Accommodation
  • Insurance
  • Tax
  • Equipment

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