Considerations When Adopting a Pet

A diverse professional with experience in television, fashion, home renovation, and marketing, Hampton Barringer Luzak enjoys hiking and skiing in her free time. Hampton Luzak balances work and recreation with her charitable endeavors. As part of these efforts, she has transported several dogs from no-kill shelters to the Northern American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

The national leader in animal rescue, the ASPCA provides valuable information for families considering adopting a pet. Below are a few of these recommendations.

First, think of how long the pet will live – dogs can live 12 to 15 years, and cats, up to 20. Will adoptive pet owners be able to care for the animal through job changes, long-distance moves, or the birth of a child? What is the back-up plan if a child or family member is allergic to the animal? Food, veterinary care, and identification tags are all costs beyond the initial adoption price. Additionally, costs of maintenance and healthcare are important to consider. Sometimes, homes require special care before bringing a pet home – for example, poisonous plants should be removed and yards should be secured. Staff members at your local animal shelter can provide additional information to help you make good adoption choices.