DOs and DON’Ts of Giving Pets as Gifts

Christmas puppy - cute little labrador retriever wit red bow around his neck in front of the christmas tree.

Pets bring us joy year-round, so it’s no surprise that many people give one as a gift to a friend or family member for the holidays. While finding a home for a pet in need is a gift in and of itself, there are important things to consider before gifting a furry friend. Below are some DOs and DON’Ts for giving a pet as a gift this holiday season:

DO let your friend or family pick out their own pet. If your loved one is looking to bring a furry, feathery or scaly friend into the home, take them to The Animal Foundation in person instead of choosing the animal yourself. Adopting a pet is a lifetime commitment and it’s important to make sure it’s a good fit.

DO use good judgment. Consider a few simple questions before committing to giving an animal to someone as a gift. Does the person have a sustained and serious interest in owning and caring for an animal companion? Do they have the knowledge and resources to care for the animal properly? Is the choice of species and breed appropriate for the recipient?

DO consider a gift certificate that covers the adoption fee of a pet. If your friend or family member does not find a pet that is a good fit before the holidays, consider purchasing a gift certificate that can be used toward an animal’s adoption fee at a later date.

DO have a good talk about the pet’s future. There are many important questions to ask potential pet owners before committing to having a pet. Will they be able to afford care for the pet? Will they be able to take the pet with them if they move? Are their family members or roommates okay with having a pet in their home? What will they do with the pet if they can’t take care of it anymore? These are all important considerations to be made before bringing a pet into the home.

DON’T get a pet on impulse. Even if a friend or family member says that they want a pet, don’t commit to one unless they are absolutely sure that they want it, and have taken the time to think about what kind of pet they want and how they will care for it.

The holidays may only come around once a year, but pets provide unconditional love year-round. Follow these tips to be sure your gift is a pawsome one!

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