When it comes to pets, figuring out the perfect match for you and your family can be a difficult process. So many things come into play when trying to decide which would be most suited to your lifestyle and home. This is the first in a series of blogs to guide you along the way to finding which pet is best for you. If you can’t choose between a dog or a cat, read on!
Before you choose which species you’re best suited to, you need to take stock of yourself and your lifestyle. Are you an active person who loves the outdoors or do you prefer relaxing on the couch? Do you live in a small space? If you rent your home, are pets allowed and are there restrictions on what size and type of pet you can have? Do you like a spotless house? Do you have young children? Does anyone in the house have allergies to certain pets? Do you have a need to be needed? Do you live alone or with family and what do they want?
Before getting either a cat or a dog, realize that this is both an emotional and financial commitment of 10-16 years or more. Are you prepared for that? These are just some of the things you need to consider.
The Case for Cats
- Cats are a great choice if your life is very busy and you need a more independent pet. While many cats love to cuddle and interact, most of them are okay left alone while you are away at work.
- When you arrive home, kitty is probably quite happy to curl up on your lap for a cuddle whereas often a dog demands much more from you.
- Cats are easy to potty train. Indoor cats are drawn naturally to the kitty litter, so you won’t be getting up in the middle of the night to toilet your cat the way you probably will with a puppy.
- Cats don’t need obedience training. Certainly they are trainable if you wish to spend the time and effort, but it’s not as crucial for a cat as it is for a dog.
- Cats are relatively quiet and clean.
- Cats need playtime just like dogs, but the energy expenditure to play with a cat is much less than with a dog.
The Lowdown on Dogs
- Dogs are great if you have a more active lifestyle. They need daily exercise, and they love it!
- Dogs are great alarm systems and one of the best deterrents to burglars.
- Because they come in all shapes, temperaments and sizes, it is likely you can find one that will suit your lifestyle.
- Dogs crave attention. They want to be with you 24/7. So if you need to be needed, a dog is for you.
- Dogs love and need training to become good canine citizens. If you want a very close bond with your pet, positive reinforcement training is a great way to enhance that bond.
- You can do a ton of stuff with dogs that cats simply would not enjoy. Camping, hiking, competing in dog sports, going for a swim, or just going for car rides, are some of the things dogs love to do with you.
So there you go. Just a few things to think about before making the big decision. If you are particularly adventurous, you could even have both!
Next in this series we’ll cover what choices you have to make when it comes to bringing a dog into your life. Stay tuned!
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- Carrie and Cliff