Romantic films delight in scenes that show gifting pets as part of the relationship-building process. While these scenes play well on screen, the real-life equivalent might not play so well. While some research suggests people accept pets as gifts fairly well, it’s tricky, tricky ground.
The same goes for holiday films where small children scream in delight as floppy-eared puppies leap from gift boxes. Before you go out and adopt a pet for your spouse, significant other, or child, there are some things you should know.
Impulse Adoptions Often Go Poorly
Getting a pet for a significant other or child on impulse may well prove a burden they don’t want or can’t handle. As much as your significant other might adore dogs or cats, they might lack the mental or emotional bandwidth to care for a pet.
A new pet for a child should never come as an impulse decision, especially for someone else’s child. Kids might love their pets, but they rarely excel at feeding, walking, or brushing them.
An impulse pet purchase for a child generally means a lot of work for the parents. Your spouse might not thank you for springing all of that work on them.
On top of all of that, chemistry with a pet is a mysterious thing. It’s generally better if the family picks out the pet together.
Gift Supplies with the Pet
If you’re committed to giving a pet for Christmas, make supplies for that pet another holiday gift. Dogs and cats both need a lot of supplies. A few of the things a pet might need include:
- Cat or dog collars
- Pet Bed
- Flea medication
- House training supplies
At the very least, make sure you bring food. Running out for anything on Christmas Day generally proves an exercise in frustration.
Consider the Living Situation
If you own your home with your significant other, bringing home an animal might come as a shock. It won’t, however, create problems with a lease. The same is not true for many apartment dwellers.
Before you gift any kind of pet to an apartment-dwelling significant other, make sure you’re solid on the pet policy for their building. Few things will prove more heartbreaking than taking an animal back to the shelter because a lease forbids cats and dogs. You should also weigh whether your significant other will want to pay the inevitable animal fees that most apartment leases require.
Adopt a Pet with Care
While you can give a pet as a gift, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. You should adopt the pet with full input from your family or significant other. That helps ensure that everyone likes the pet before you get it home.
You should also make sure the pet comes with essential supplies like food, collars, and leashes. It limits the stressful holiday errands and lets everyone just enjoy the new family member.
Looking for more pets tips? Check out the posts in the pet section.