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So You’ve Decided to Adopt a Pet

February 1, 2015

You’re ready to add a new furry family member to your household. You want to buy your new pet a comfy bed, lots of toys, and a cool custom collar. You’re even ready to take your pet to your veterinarian from Black Hills for a new patient exam. Before you undertake this flurry of activity, though, give some thought to choosing your furry pet. After all, your pet will be part of your family for years, and you want the experience to be a positive one. Read more about considerations for choosing a furry family member.

Feline or Canine Housemate?

First, decide if you’re a cat or dog person. Maybe you appreciate cats’ famous aloof, independent streak. Many felines seem to regard their owners as “staff” who have been dispatched to care for the cat’s daily needs. Also, cats seem to enjoy staying alone for hours with their food, water, and litter box.

Or, maybe you’d prefer a dog, who will be incredibly happy for any chance to interact with you. Walking, playing, jogging…he’ll love it all. However, dogs do require regular walks and socialization with other dogs and people. At the end of the day, though, you’ll need to give each furry pet some quality time.

A Dog Who Loves Your Lifestyle

Let’s say you’ve decided to bring home a new dog. Evaluate your lifestyle, and choose a pooch who will be compatible with your daily habits. For example, maybe you enjoy curling up on the couch with a good book or your laptop computer. A mellow, affectionate small dog would love to share those activities.

On the other hand, maybe you can’t exist without your outdoor exercise. You love your daily jogs, and you hike in the woods every weekend. Since you want a canine exercise partner who can match your physical abilities, consider an athletic working or sporting dog. However, understand that if you don’t give these high-energy pooches enough physical and mental stimulation, they’ll become bored and can adopt undesirable behaviors such as furniture and baseboard destruction.

Youngster, Adult, or Senior Pet?

Now, decide if you’d rather adopt a puppy or kitten; or if an adult pet would be a better choice. Puppies or kittens require consistent potty or litter box training; an older pet has probably mastered that task. Also, a younger pet hasn’t fully developed his body or personality; and you might be surprised to encounter a rebellious teenager one day. An older dog or cat will likely exhibit more predictable behaviors.

Once you choose a compatible pet, your Black Hills vet will be happy to provide your new furry family member with top-notch veterinary care.

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