Things to keep in mind if buying a pet as a gift for the holidays

Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – There’s nothing quite like the companionship of an animal.

“It is so fulfilling to have a pet…a pet becomes a family member instantly,” said Ingham County Animal Shelter Deputy Director Anne Burns.

“The biggest rewarding part of owning a pet is how it personally enriches individuals,” said Preuss Pets Store Manager Rick Preuss.

Whether it be a dog, cat, bird or even a fish…animals hold a special place in most of our hearts. They even become part of the family but owning a pet comes with responsibility.

“It’s like having a child…that animal dog, cat whatever that pet is…is dependent on you,” Burns stated.

Burns says people like to buy pets as holiday gifts and while a new dog or cat may put a smile on someone’s face, she says it’s important to remember having a pet is a commitment.

“You have to feed it, you have to care for it, you have to love it, you have to take it outside to go potty, you have to change the kitty litter box if you have a cat, there’s vet care and that gets costly,” Burns added.

But it’s not just dogs and cats…exotic animals including birds, reptiles and fish to name a few are also popular and according to the experts, they deserve just as much attention.

“Sometimes especially in the excitement of shopping and going out and the busy-ness of the holidays, we have a tendency to impulse and our goal here is to make sure that people understand the long term responsibilities,” Preuss Pets Floor Manager Kirbay Preuss said.

Responsibilities including…

“The age that the animal might live…some might be whether let’s say it’s an exotic animal the equipment cost associated with it,” Rick Preuss stated.

Gifting someone with a forever friend this holiday season is a nice gesture…

“Animals do bring enrichment to our lives that would otherwise be missed,” Preuss added.

But he says keeping that companionship involves knowing how to take care of them.

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