Having a pet can be a wonderful experience – it’s a great stress-reducer and can teach kids about responsibility. For working moms, the timing and decision of which pet to adopt is important, as oftentimes the responsibility will fall on your shoulders.
Here are some tips and considerations:
- Start When You Are Ready – No matter how much the kids beg and plead, remember that if they really want a pet, they will be willing to wait. It’s not a good idea to adopt a pet if you are in the middle of a busy project or life event like a new baby, sick family member, etc. Pet care can be time-consuming in the beginning.
- Begin With Something Easy – Before you jump into getting a dog or cat, start with a low-maintenance pet like a beta fish, hermit crab, or guinea pig. Use it as a testing ground to see if you and the rest of your family can handle the responsibility.
- Consider an Outdoor Pet – Having a pet that lives outside will take less of toll because your house will stay clean and the pet is more independent. Outdoor cats, chickens, and rabbits can be friendly, but with less interaction, they may not be as loving as an indoor pet.
- Take a Test Drive First – Dogs, cats, and birds are can be affectionate pets; but they require vet visits, feeding, grooming, and clean-up. Try taking care of a friend or neighbor’s pet while they are on vacation to get a glimpse into the responsibility before you jump in.
- Research – Get books from the library on how to take care of whichever pet you are considering. It will help you and your children be more knowledgeable and prepared for your new family addition.