Tips to Follow If You’re Giving a Pet as A Gift

Whether it’s birthdays or holidays, giving a cuddly, adorable pet to your loved ones might seem like a tempting idea. However, it’s important to understand that taking care of a furry friend can sometimes be difficult for people who aren’t ready to take on such responsibilities. This is because the non-stop wag of their furry tail comes with a commitment to another living being for the next couple of decades.

No one should be given an unwanted gift, especially one that lives and breathes. Data reveals that pet abandonment can be a serious issue if the pet is gifted to someone who didn’t want it in the first place or can’t handle the responsibility of raising a pet. Experts believe that millennials, on contrary to what warnings by ASPCA suggest, are less likely to abandon pets received as gifts. They don’t send them back to shelters, pet shops, or other sources.

ASPCA researched the phenomenon of giving pets as presents. They concluded that people who received them as a surprise gift from their loved ones often felt more attached to them. It led ASPCA to change their official stance to promote the well-being of shelter animals in ways that allow them to be gifted to animal lovers.

However, giving pets as gifts can backfire if it’s not welcomed with a lot of preparation, consideration, and care. So, if you’re thinking to give a pet as a gift to your children, significant other, or loved ones to surprise them on a special occasion, here are some things you should consider before contemplating whether the gift is actually a good idea.

Factors To Consider


Dog dressed with a bow to be given as a gift

#1 Has The Person Ever Expressed The Desire For A Pet?

Sometimes, simply being fond of animals or raising a voice against animal abuse on social media isn’t quite the same as actually wanting a pet. You should confirm that the person receiving the gift is willing to sustain the responsibility of a canine companion.

#2 Can The Person Afford A Pet?

If you think you know someone well enough to gift them a pet, chances are you also know them enough to speculate whether they can afford one. Pet food and treats, vaccinations, leashes, chew toys, dog beds or crates, grooming trips, there’s a lot that demands a hefty, designated budget. If you think they can’t afford proper pet care, the idea of gifting a pet to them gets a thumbs down from us!

#3 Is The Person Capable Of Taking Care Of The Pet?

Young children or the elderly can’t handle the responsibility of caring for a cat or a doggo. While older children are perfectly capable of handling the responsibility, sometimes it’s still not a good idea to put them solely in charge. If you decide to get a pupper for your children, you should be prepared to take on some responsibility because you’ll have to be the primary caregiver regardless of their age.

A cute puppy and kitten cuddling in the garden

#4 Does This Person (Or Anyone In The Family) Has Pet Allergies?

Pet allergies are extremely common, and they’re the most common reason for pet abandonment. Sometimes people might not know that they’re allergic, or you might not be aware that they are. Either ask them or think of something else to give them.

#5 Can This Person’s Lifestyle Allow Them To Keep A Pet?

Whether it’s an adult with a demanding job that has a lot of traveling involved with long working hours or a teenager with an active social life and hectic college schedule, it wouldn’t be healthy or fair for a pet to be given to someone who can’t find time to pamper it.

#6 What Type Of Pet Would Suit This Person?

Small children are more prone to liking toy dog breeds such as a poodle or a chihuahua, although most dog gurus recommend them for elderly parents that might live in a small space instead. Similarly, larger dog breeds are more suitable for households where people are willing and able to care for them, take them on regular walks, and ensure they get plenty of mental and physical exercise.

The puppy guru at theDogHood platform suggests paying the adoption fees at a shelter instead of gifting a cat or a doggo to the recipient. This way, there’s no impulse buying a kitten just because you found it adorable. We know that puppy-dog eyes can make you want to act on your impulses, but adopting a pet requires mental, physical, financial, and emotional investment, much like adopting a child.

The person who will take care of the pet should be given a chance to choose a pet by the temperament, activity level, size, breed, and other factors that best suit their lifestyle. If they ultimately decide against adopting a cat or a dog, the fees can be used as a much-needed donation to the shelter working towards the well-being of abandoned pets. Win-win situation!

Dog guru pampering a white doggo

If you’re unsure about which dog breed might be suitable for you, or are looking for dog training tips and tricks to give the best care to your pupper, consider joining theDogHood community or download the app. It can help you reach out to local DogHood hubs with a click, where newbie and seasoned doggo lovers across the globe unite to share content in the PAWFEED, ask questions, stay updated with events, discuss habits, pain points, desires, and more.

You can also offer or seek advice from certified dog behaviorists, dog gurus, and other doggo parents at theDogHood platform. It’s a dog lovers community platform where you can access free dog training videos, celebrate unique traits of different doggos, set local play dates for socializing your dog, and more.

The online community for dog lovers also offers the opportunity to share cute puppy stories or get inspired by heartwarming stories of dogs by dog lovers on the Hoomans of the DogHood.

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