Puppies and kittens and bunnies, oh my! If the internet has proven one thing it’s that animals are the best. You don’t have to watch wistfully from afar. Bringing a pet into your life has a lot of benefits and is less costly than you’d think. Here’s the 5 reasons you should get a pet.
1. They’re good for your health
Henry Wong is a qualified veterinarian from Vets On Call, a mobile vet service which means your best friend will have medical attention whenever it’s required. He’s read plenty of research that supports the notion pets are good for your health. Here’s the run-down on the most important benefits:
“It is clear from concrete scientific support that pets are of significant physical and emotional benefit for people.
The most obvious physical benefit of having a pet comes from the potential for consistent exercise with certain types of animals (e.g. walking the dog). Some of the others include: pain reduction, reduction in asthma/hay fever in children exposed to pets during the first year of life, lowering of cholesterol and a reduction in the blood pressure response to mental stress.
The emotional benefits of having a furry friend is tied to the psychological value of companionship. Some of these include: greater self-esteem, greater conscientiousness, less fearful attachment as well as protection against anxiety and related illnesses.”
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2. They’re less expensive than you think
A lot of the time it’s the cost of a pet that puts you off having one. Richard Laycock, the pet insurance expert from finder.com.au, says you can cut the costs if you play it smart. Here’s how:
“Buying a new pet is an exciting time, but it’s also important to consider the long-term cost commitment you’re getting into. There are plenty of factors that can influence the cost of your pet. Its diet, size, medical requirements, entertainment needs and breed can all impact how affordable your pet will be.
If you’re purchasing a breed of dog or cat that’s predisposed to genetic conditions it’s likely you’ll be forking out more on medical bills and insurance. Cats and dogs can live a long time - it’s important to make sure you can commit to 10 or 15 years of ongoing costs.”
Richard’s tips for lowering the cost of pets:
“The actual pet: Rescuing a pet is typically far cheaper than buying a purebred or a pedigree from a pet store or breeder.
Pet food: Buy pet food in bulk or wait for it to come on sale at your supermarket.
Accessories: Buy accessories on sale, online or directly from wholesalers instead of from a pet store.
Insurance: Compare policies online before purchasing so that it’s cheaper. Also it will be cheaper for your dog the younger it is.
Vaccinations: Keep immunisations up to date. Having routine vaccinations can prevent a costly trip to the vet later.
Boarding or pet-sitting: Where you can, try to avoid costly kennels. Instead, there are plenty of sharing economy apps where you can pay someone far less to look after your pet.”
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3. They can help prevent allergies
Research has shown that kids and adults exposed to pet fur have stronger immune systems. Children who grow up with pets are also less likely to develop asthma and similar allergies.
If you are already sensitive not to worry! Some animals have allergy-friendly fur such as low-shedding dogs, very short-haired cats and rabbits. If you only have a low sensitivity to begin with it’s possible to build a resistance to your allergy as well. Which means the more you cuddle Fido the faster you’ll be able to rid yourself of the sneezes. We call that a win-win.
4. They teach you responsibility
Taking care of others is an important life lesson. It’s integral if you plan on upgrading your fur baby for real babies one day and it’s helpful in maintaining routine. Pets need to be fed, walked/played with and cuddled daily. It’s not a lot to ask in exchange for undivided love and attention from them in return. Having a pet in your life will help you with responsibility; whether you’d like to teach your kids early or you’re a big kid at heart.
5. They’ll love you no matter what
Your pets don’t care if you look nice, smell good or haven’t left the house in a few days. You never have to explain yourself to them either. The number 1 thing pets offer is companionship. They teach you to love and be loved in return. They’re effective in helping with trauma in life or dealing with a difficult breakup. If you could use some practice opening up your heart then the love of a pet is the ideal answer.
Preparing for a pet
Bringing home a pet isn’t too difficult, but it takes more than just letting them in the door. You should check the house for potential hazards they could get into while you’re at work. Ask yourself important questions like will my pet be allowed outdoors? If so, you’ll need a pet door for them to use and ideally some shade from sun and rain. A simple door or window awning is all it takes to offer protection from the elements.
Inside the home you should look for electrical plugs a puppy may wish to chew on, delicate ornaments that kittens use to test gravity and anything else that could cause them harm. It’s best to bring your pet home over a weekend so you have the time to settle them into their new home. Plus, you can watch them explore and remove any potential hazards your people eyes missed.
Stop searching funny cat videos and start making your own. We guarantee it’s twice as adorable and heartwarming when you watch your own pet in awe.