Everyone Should Not Own a Pet Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

domestication of dogs over ten thousand years ago, companion animals have held a special place in the hearts of people. For many people, owning a companion animal is a rewarding and enjoyable affair. Pets will offer unconditional love and support that may otherwise be unobtainable to people in today's cold-hearted, "dog-eat-dog" society. However, owning a pet of any species, much like having a human child, is an endeavor that calls for a great deal of commitment and responsibility on the part of the human companion. "Even people who care about animals are often unable to recognize or meet animals' many needs." (PETA) People who are unable to provide for an animal's financial needs, are unwilling to make life-style changes for an animal, or are opposed to treating an animal with love and respect should not own a pet.

Unlike most acquisitions, adopting a pet is not a one-time "purchase." Once adoption or pet-store fees are paid for, the animal continues to have financial needs. "The costs of pet ownership can exceed $500 per year. Food, licenses, training classes, spaying and neutering, routine and emergency veterinary care, annual vaccinations, grooming, toys, kitty litter and other expenses add up quickly." (Pet Adoption) Before getting a pet, this financial commitment needs to be fully understood and considered. There are indeed many low-cost alternatives such as training and grooming the animal at home, or using low-cost spay-and-neuter clinics, that do allow for individuals who are not extremely wealthy to sustain an excellent home for pets. However, according to Moco Steinman, a founder of Rogue Animal Sanctuary in Florida, "There are ways to cut the cost without sacrificing quality...but a significant monetary expense is inevitable." (Steinman) Pet owners who did not consider their budget when acquiring a pet may suddenly find themselves unable to continue with the costs of pet food and veterinary care which will lead to the neglecting of the animal's needs.

Pets also require a great deal of time and effort that may force an animal lover to significantly alter their pre-pet lifestyle to best accommodate for the animal's needs. "Dogs, cats and other pets cannot be ignored just because you're tired or busy. Many animals are in the shelter because their owners didn't realize how much time it took to properly care for them." (Pet Adoption) Prospective pet owners must be prepared to deal with inconveniences beyond simply walking the dog or scooping the cat's litter box. "Families with animals may need to be creative as well as committed. They need to take the time to tailor their home for their pet's needs, whether that be changing from carpet to linoleum to avoid stains and fleas, or changing the exotic garden in the back yard to a fenced dog-play area, it all boils down to…

Sources Used in Document:


PETA. "Companion Animals: Doing What's Best for Them." Fact Sheet. 2003. Accessed Online 25 November 2003. Available at http://www.peta.org/mc/facts/fsc19.html

Pet adoption"

City of Pasadena, Texas. 29 Apr 1999. Accessed Online 25 November 2003. Available at http://www.ci.pasadena.tx.us/pet.htm

Steinman, Moco. Personal Interview. 25 November 2003.

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