Australia has one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world, with almost two-thirds of households having at least one pet. A study conducted by pet care retailer Rufus & Coco even found that 91% of pet owners consider their pet to be their best friend, but responsible pet ownership involves more than just picking out a cute animal at the RSPCA or animal shelter. Anneke van den Broek, founder and CEO of Rufus & Coco, told us the four questions every person should ask themselves before adopting a rescue pet.
“Rescuing an animal is one of the best ways to find a pet,” says Anneke. “You can save both a life and your wallet, with rescue pet adoption fees often well below the cost of going to a pet shop or breeder. However, a rescue pet often means little to no paperwork on the history of the animal. To ensure you are fully prepared for the responsibility, I suggest always asking these four questions.”
1. Do you have the financial means to support a pet?
The first and biggest question when rescuing an animal should be ‘can I afford it?’ Australians spend approximately $12 billion dollars on their pets each year on everything from food to vet fees. Do a quick calculation to make sure you have some funds set aside for emergencies. It might also be worth considering pet insurance.
2. Does the pet in question have specific requirements, and can you cater to these?
Rescue animals often come from negative environments or have been neglected without a home for some time and may require a bit more love, care and attention. Some pets will be more active and require more time from you, while others might need ongoing medication or behavior management. It’s important to try and get as much background information about the pet as possible, and determine if this is something you are ready to take on and manage
3. Is this pet the right breed/animal for your lifestyle?
Do you have young children? Do you live in a house or unit? Do you work full time? Are you active and able to keep up with the pet’s needs? Choosing the wrong breed for your personal situation can result in an unhappy owner and pet. It’s really important to consider all aspects of your life, and how well the pet will fit into it.
4. Are they good with kids and other animals?
Whether you have kids or are planning to have kids in the future, it’s worth checking if the animal has had any experiences (good or bad) with children. Similarly, if you have other animals, make sure they will get along!
You might also like: