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How to Choose and Prepare for a New Pet

Thinking about getting a pet can include many hard decisions. First of all, we must decide what kind of pet to get! There are so many options! After we decide, we have to prepare for the new member of the family and provide everything he or she needs. Let’s face it, our pets mean the most to us and we care for them just like a new baby.

1. What Pet to Get

The first step is to decide what kind of pet you want to get. There are so many options to choose from. These include a puppy, kitten, fish, guinea pig, hamster, snake, etc. Your decision should be based upon the amount of time and effort you are willing to put into your pet. For example, a new puppy must be taken for walks and kept active which will take a lot of time from your schedule. However, a new fish or hamster just needs his or her fish bowl or cage to be kept clean and fed every day, which would not take too much time and effort.

2. Getting Your New Friend

Now that you have decided what kind of pet to get, you have to go get him or her! The first place to look should be an animal shelter. These animals have been lost, abandoned, abused, or are sick and need the most love. It is always the best option to look at a shelter first so we can save as many lives as we can. If there is no shelter near you, a pet store or breeder can also work. No matter where you go, you can pick out your best friend!

3. Supplies and Preparation

Hooray! You picked out your new pet. The next step to do is get all the supplies your pet will need (and maybe extra toys). Every pet will need food designed for their species and water. The rest of the supplies may be specific for what pet you get. For example, kittens will need litter and a litter box to use the bathroom. Dogs will need a leash and collar to go for walks. Fish will need a bowl and stones/decorations inside. Hamsters will need a cage, bedding to fill the cage, and a wheel to run it. It all depends on your pet, but getting all the necessities is very important for your new pet’s life. You can also get toys and treats for your new pet for extra happiness.

4. Vet and Health

It is always important to get your new pet established at your veterinarian. A responsible pet owner should get a checkup for your new pet just to make sure he or she is healthy and to also get any vaccines he or she needs. It is also important because if any emergency or sickness should arise, you know exactly where to take them.

5. Love and Happiness

Finally, everything is set up and ready for your pet, and your pet is home with you! Get your pet acquainted with your home, lifestyle, and family. You can now enjoy him or her and play with them. You can take your new puppy for a walk or play fetch. You can play with toys or lasers with your new kitten. You can even put your new hamster into a hamster ball and let him or her run about all day. Just enjoy and love your new best friend and they will love you right back.

Xoxo,

Your avid pet lover and adopter 

Emily Frey

Scranton '20

I am from Whitehall, Pennsylvania and a senior at the University of Scranton. I am currently studying under a biochemistry pre-medical major and aspire to be a neonatologist one day. I am a Campus Correspondent of Her Campus at Scranton and I am looking forward to creating a great year with my chapter. I am involved in other clubs at Scranton, including Health Professions Organization, Nurses 2 Newborns, Biology Club, and Circle K.
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