Adoption Responsibility

What taking care of and training a pet really means

Charlotte Rooney, Opinion Editor

We all love puppies. We love their soft ears, their excited personalities, and their wagging tails. What most people don’t understand is all the work that comes with that adorable puppy. It needs to be house trained, neutered or spayed, vaccinated, walked regularly, and given attention. Buying or adopting an animal isn’t a short term commitment. That puppy needs patience and love in order to develop properly, and as it gets older, it may require more medicine or veterinary attention due to old age.

Cats need a proper litter box, vaccinations for rabies and feline AIDS, as well as for other diseases. People think that cats are solitary animals, which is completely untrue. Cats require love and affection, just like a dog would, and without that attention, the cat will begin to act out by spraying or tearing furniture.

Investing in a pet isn’t all fun and games — it calls for time and patience and understanding and it takes months to train a dog or cat. People buy pets thinking it will be easy and give their pets up to shelters when they realize it’s real work to take care of an animal that is completely dependent on his or her owners.

Don’t buy an animal without really thinking about the work and care that goes into it. Animal shelters are packed with unwanted animals, more than they ever have been in previous years.

So before you add to the masses, think about the animal you could potentially giving up.