Making the decision to bring a new pet into your life is an exciting time. The challenging part is deciding what type of pet would be right for you and your family. Our Hoquiam vets at Raintree Veterinary Center discuss some of the common types of pets and how to choose the right pet for your home.
The Joy of a New Pet
Deciding to add a new pet to your family can be a very exciting time. Animals have the ability to brighten any day and bring a special joy to the world. Pets are a valued part of our families and we care for them as such for the entirety of their lives.
When we make the important decision of adding a pet to our family we need to remember that it is not a decision to take lightly. It is a long-term commitment and different types of animals come with different requirements. If you decide to get a new pet then you must be sure that you have the time and resources to provide them with everything they need and that they will fit your home and lifestyle. Here at Raintree Veterinary Hospital in Hoquiam, our vets are here to help you make the best decision for you and your family when it comes to owning a new pet.
Things to think about when getting a new petThe first thing to consider when selecting a pet is if they will meet your lifestyle needs. The size of your home and whether you have safe outdoor space, if you are elderly or have small children, how much time you spend at home are all things you should consider when making the decision to get a pet and what type of pet you are considering. Some other questions that our Hoquiam vets suggest asking yourself are:
- What are the average costs associated with the pet that I am considering? Am I able to afford that financial responsibility? There are a number of costs related to any pet that you might decide to get but some pets will cost more than others.
- Will my pet match my personality and energy level? You will want a pet that will compliment your energy and personality traits as this will make your companionship more compatible. If you enjoy socializing and have plenty of energy and are active then you may want to consider a dog.
- Do I suffer from any allergies? Some pets can commonly cause allergic reactions and so if you have sensitivities then you may want to avoid any pets that may trigger a reaction.
- Am I able to provide the necessary care for the pet I have chosen? There will be care associated with each pet but some pets will require more hands-on and frequent care than others. The bathroom habits, grooming needs, feeding, exercise and time commitment for each pet vary and so you should be sure to choose a pet that is within your means for care.
Whether you already have your heart set on a particular type of pet or not you should keep an open mind while researching and be honest with the type of pet that may be best suited for you.
What to think about if getting a Dog
If you are considering a dog then you will need to think about what breed you would like. Different breeds of dogs have different temperaments and personalities and this is something very important to think about when deciding. Some breeds of dogs are very energetic and vocal while some prefer to lounge all day, so you will need to think about your personality and daily routine. If you are thinking about getting a dog then you will also need to think about the space that you have to offer a dog. Are you in a small apartment or in a large house with a yard? You wouldn't want a Great Dane if space is tight!
Care requirements to consider: Dogs need to be registered and licensed, they need proper training, consistent walks and exercise, an appropriate healthy diet, grooming and veterinarian care.
What to think about if getting a Cat
Cats are one of the most common pets there are. While cats are typically playful and adventurous they will still each have their own distinct personalities and just as with dogs, this can vary depending on the breed. Adult cats are generally low-maintenance and do not require constant attention, although they do enjoy pets and company when they come looking for it. Cats will however require toys and stimulation in order to keep them from getting bored as well as grooming to keep their fur clean and their nails trimmed which will reduce shedding and damage to furniture through scratching.
Care requirements to consider: Litter box cleaning, providing a complete and healthy diet and stimulation (toys, scratching posts), nail care and veterinarian care.
What to think about if getting a Bird
Birds can make great pets if the right breed has been chosen. Not all types of birds enjoy human companionship and so our Hoquiam vets suggest doing as much research as possible before deciding on bringing home a bird. There are some birds that will actually play games with you, talk with you and enjoy pets and cuddles. Birds can get messy quickly so it is important to clean their cages daily and provide fresh water daily as well as change it anytime it gets messy. The cage for your bird will need to be large enough that your bird will be able to flap their wings fully while in the cage.
Care requirements to consider: Keeping the cage clean, birds can be noisy, lifelong commitment as some birds will outlive their owners and veterinarian care.
What to think about if getting a Fish
Fish can be a great pet choice for those that do not have a lot of spare time or are not home all the time. Generally fish require less care than most other pets. While the care is different depending on the type of fish, the main care that all fish require is that their tank is kept clean. It is important to note that some fish are carnivorous and may eat other fish so it is very important to do research before deciding to purchase many different types of fish. Speak with your vet in Hoquiam about what fish might go well together.
Care requirements to consider: Proper nutrition, tank cleaning.
What to think about if getting a Rabbit
Rabbits are very intelligent, playful and affectionate pets. Rabbits also thrive best when they live with another rabbit as they are very social creatures. Be sure when selecting a pair of rabbits that you get either two females or two males as they will reproduce quite quickly otherwise. If you have a rabbit you will need to provide them with things such as a clean litter box, food and water dishes, and clean bedding that is made of non-toxic materials like recycled newspaper or aspen wood.
Care requirements to consider: Cleaning their cage and litter box regularly, providing companionship and stimulation, proper nutrition, and supervision at all times when they are outside of their cage.
What to think about if getting a Hamster or Guinea Pig
Hamsters and guinea pigs are common pets for families with small children. These small animals love to be played with and gently cuddled and petted. Like most pets, the main form of care comes with keeping their cage clean and ensuring they have fresh food and water. These pets will also require some forms of stimulation through toys and wheels and playtime. While the guinea pigs would require a larger cage than hamsters, they will both need their cage to be cleaned daily. These pets are fairly low-maintenance though making them a good option for busy families.
Care requirements to consider: Regular cage cleaning (including clean bedding), proper nutrition.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.