Are You Ready To Adopt

Are You Ready to Adopt a Dog?

Dogs are loyal companions that can bring loads of joy to a family. However, it is a great responsibility to take care of one. They can create loads of mess, bite and destroy your stuff and bark excessively etc. Find out more about the situations you might face here.

Are you prepared to take care of the mess that they can create?

 

Are You Prepared for a Puppy?

Puppies are cute and adorable, with their eyes full of affection. They are often the top choice amongst adopters. However, there are some things you’ll need to consider to determine if you’re ready for a puppy.

  1. Time. If you adopt a puppy, you will need to expect to spend a lot of time with them in their first year as you’ll need to care for their every need, teach them how to behave and train them accordingly. They will require constant supervision especially in their first few months and you’ll need to take them outside every few hours to relieve themselves. It is important that you spend a lot of time into molding their personality and behaviour into the dog you want them to be.

  2. Training. Puppies are cute but needs to be trained so that they know what they can or cannot do. They will require a lot of exercising to ensure that their body develop properly. As they grow, they will start chewing, making messes, jump on strangers and bark etc and you need to have the patience to train them from doing so. This will continue until when they are between 18 to 36 months old. Of course, it will be tremendously rewarding and fun raising them and seeing them mature.

  3. Uncertainties. You will not be sure of the puppy’s final size and weight. We have seen many families gave up their dogs because of the size they grew to become.

Is Adult Dog suitable for You?

Some consider adult dogs easier to raise as you’ll skip the developmental stages of puppies such as teething, potty training etc. Depending on their previous care taker, they may already be housetrained. Once they are used to the new environment, they can be your ready and constant companions.

  1. May require less effort. Adult dogs could be more emotionally mature and be easier to take care of daily. They will be less likely to chew and make messes and is more suitable for family with working adults. In other words, they are more likely to be able to settle down and exhibit some self-control.

  2. Fully developed traits. You will have an idea of what you are getting when you adopt Adult dogs as they have already grown to their adult size. Their physical traits and basic temperament may be more apparent although rescued dogs may take a while to show their true personality. However, our trial homestay will allow you to understand the dog and see if it’s the right fit for you.

  3. May require more time to develop bond. As our dogs are rescued, they come from a myriad of background. Some of them could have slight behavior problems and it will take some time for them to get accustomed to the new environment. They will also need more time to bond with you.

  4. Can still be trained. Dogs can be trained at any age, and not just when they are puppies. All you need is patience and care to train the dog to do what you want them to.

Will a Senior Dog be Better?

Senior dogs are given up for a variety of reasons and most of the time, this does not include bad behavior. It is more often due to family’s reasons such as allergies, moving house, change in work schedule etc that made them give up their dogs. Senior dogs are the least popular ones considered for adoption but there are many advantages to adopting one of them.

  1. Generally have had some obedience and house training. Senior dogs generally have learned what are not right to do and as they have socialized for a longer period, they can quickly get along with humans and other animals. They tend to appreciate love and attention and can quickly learn what is expected of them to keep the love and attention.

  2. Constant Companion. Senior dogs have more patience and can usually sit calmly next to you while you are busy. They are also ready for hiking, riding in the car, walking on leash, fetching etc.

  3. Fully developed traits. They are easy to assess for their size and temperament as they have fully developed. There will be no guessing involved with regards to their final size as what you adopt will be what you get. It is unlikely that they will develop serious behavior problems as they grow even older as well.

  4. Can still be trained. Dogs can be trained at any age, and not just when they are puppies. All you need is patience and care to train the dog to do what you want them to.

  5. Less exercise required. While exercising is still important, senior dogs require shorter and less intensive exercise to fulfil their activity needs. This makes them particularly suitable for family who has a more hectic and busy life.

Are You Ready for A Cat?

Keeping a cat (or two) is a wonderfully rewarding experience. However, to be fair to the cat and to yourself, it is important to make sure a cat is right for you and your household. Be honest with yourself and ask yourself the following questions. 

  1. Are you ready to give your cat a lifetime commitment of love? The average lifespan of an indoor cat ranges from 13 to 17 years old. Some cats even lived till 20 years. Are you on an impulse mode and want to adopt a kitten because they looked so cute? If the answer is yes, do note that kittens will also out-grow their kitten-hood. Do you still want to keep the cat when he/she is a young adult?If you are unsure, please do not get a cat. Nobody stay young forever, let alone kittens. So you have to be certain that you are ready for this commitment. 

  2. Are you willing to spend part of your salary for cat care? Cats need regular veterinary care on top of the yearly de-worming and vaccinations. You need to add in the cost of sterilization as well if you intend to adopt a kitten. Kitten needs to be sterilized at the age of approximately 6 to 9 months.  By sterilizing your cat, the cat lives a longer and healthier life as it eliminates the possibility of ovarian cancer for female cats, to name a few.Some other cost which you will incur includes that of basic necessities such as cat food, toys, litter, cleaning products, scratching posts, pet carrier, bedding, etc. Do take note that vet bills in Singapore is expensive so please ensure that you are able to afford the vet bills as well. 

  3. Is the whole family ok with the idea of having a cat? Are you getting a cat because your kids had been pestering you? If the answer is yes, please note that you, the adult, will ultimately be the primary caregiver of the cat. If you do not want to be responsible for an animal, do not expect your kids to be responsible in this area as well.  You may want to check if any of the family members has an allergy to pet fur before getting a cat. Some cats were given up because owners are not aware that someone in the household is allergic to the cats. Even though there are medications that helps with minimizing allergic reactions, it is almost always not the solution which most owners opted for. 

  4. Are you willing to cat-proof your home? It is true that cats do not need a lot of space to feel comfortable but most cats enjoy being in high places. Whether it’s a high shelf, a window perch or the top of the refrigerator, cats feel more comfortable in the upper half of the room where he can keep an eye on the world around and below him with greater confidence. So be ready to spend some money on “catifiying” your home with cat trees, scratching post, etc.

    Do keep your cats strictly indoors by meshing up your gate grilles and window grilles. By doing that, you will also prevent the potential injuries of your cats from abusers, fall from height, etc. It is always best to take a preventive measure in this.


  5. Are you willing to go through the adoption procedures required by fosters? Responsible fosterers will screen you and conduct a house visit prior to the adoption. The process is not meant to be invasive; instead it is to ensure that the house and the whole family are ready for a new addition. Fosterers will expect you to cat proof your home and sign an adoption contract. An adoption fee of $100 to $250 per cat will be collected as well. Do note that the funds collected will be channeled back to saving more cats in the future. 

  6. Are you able to spend time with your cats? Even though cats can sleep as much as 16 hours a day, they still need attention and playtime just like any pets. Unlike many animals, cats can adjust their schedule day or night to fit into yours, which makes it easier to give them attention even if you have a busy workday. Can you devote an hour a day to playing and cuddling? If yes, that will be wonderful.  If you’re thinking of a cat just because cat care is easy, please,  please,  please just buy a toy cat instead. 

  7. Kittens or adult cats?  Yes, kittens are super adorable but they are also a handful. Are you able to handle longer playtime and their curiosity at this age? At this young age, kittens have higher level of energy so you need to make sure you have enough time to play with them. You’ll also require a high level of patience as kittens may have litter box accidents, play all night when you want to sleep, etc. If you work long hours, an adult cat may be a better fit for your lifestyle as they are less demanding of your time and will require less supervision. An adult cat usually already developed its personality and you will be able to tell if they suit your household. Adult cats can still be playful but will not be as hyperactive as kittens. 

FINAL DECISION 

If you had answered “YES” to all the above pointers, you are on the way to being a cat pawrent. 

Regardless of whether you choose to adopt a kitten or a cat, it’s important you take the time to carefully consider whether a cat is right for you. Too many cats end up at shelters / euthanised each year because people were not really ready to have a cat in their lives. 

Think about how your life will change once you get a cat and try to be realistic about your expectations. If you decide that you are truly ready, adopt one of the many kitties who are looking for a home as you will also be saving a life. 

Written by Dayne Poon – PurelyMeow Team Leader, Cat Division of Purely Adoptions