Pet Adoption—A No No as a Holiday Gift?

Thinking about adopting a pet? The holidays are one of the most popular times for pet adoptions. Who can resist the idea of an unsuspecting tyke opening a gift box and finding a puppy inside?

Even though holidays are a time when many people adopt animals, some animal lovers find this may not be the best time to add a pet to the mix. Before you consider pet adoption as a holiday gift, consider the following questions.

Who Really Wants the Pet?

If the pet is for your child, for instance, is your child responsible enough—and willing– to take care of this “gift?” Otherwise, you may find yourself grumbling as you walk the dog on cold mornings—while your child stays warm under the covers. Being clear on who will take care of the pet will go a long way in ensuring the gift is truly enjoyed.

Can the Receiver Afford the Gift?

Unless your gift includes a lifetime of supplies and medical care, you’re giving someone a gift that can cost a lot of additional money. If the person receiving the pet cannot financially afford pet food, supplies and vet care, or if the person does not have the time to take care of the pet, the pet may be lonely, untrained, or worse.  Be sure the new pet owner can keep a pet in the home. (The ASPCA says the most common reason pet owners relinquish their dogs is because their residence doesn’t allow pets.) Although surprises can be fun, surprise obligations usually are not.

Is this the Right Kind of Pet for the Person?

Many people think of adopting puppies at Christmas and bunnies at Easter, but a successful pet adoption requires matching the right type of pet to the right person. Someone who does not spend much time at home during the day might prefer a low-maintenance pet, like an angelfish. A person with allergies might prefer a pet with little or no fur, like a reptile. Someone looking for a constant companion might like an older, friendly dog.

Is This the Best Time to Adopt a Pet?

Holidays are busy with events and travel. If no one will be home to help the new pet get settled, the transition period will be a long one. It may be better to wait until there is plenty of time to attend to a new adoptee’s physical and emotional needs before bringing him home.

Pets can be wonderful additions to households, and a pet adoption should be considered a lifelong commitment—one to be enjoyed long after the holidays have passed.

Have questions about how to create a successful pet adoption? Give Dogwood Veterinary Hospital & Pet Resort a call at 919-942-6330 or email us at

By |2019-01-23T08:39:09-05:00October 30th, 2015|Seasonal News|