Intermountain Pet Hospital Blog

Intermountain Pet Hospital's blog provides tips and ideas to help make life more enjoyable for you and your pet.

Christmas puppy

4 Considerations Before You Give a Pet as a Gift

Posted by Nikki Wardle on December 18, 2018 at 9:00 AM
Nikki Wardle
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The holidays are just around the corner, and you’re probably trying to think of the perfect gift for the pet lover on your list. Maybe you’re even considering putting a big red bow on a furry friend and putting a pet under the tree this year. But hold up—think before you gift.

Are Pets a Good Holiday Gift?

Although a cat, dog, hamster, rabbit, or other pet may seem like the ideal gift for someone on your list, you may want to think twice. Animals aren’t like the latest fad toy or kitchen gadget that can be gifted and forgotten in a few weeks. Pets come with commitment. Here are just a few of the things you should consider before giving someone a pet as a holiday gift.

1. Pets Are a Time Commitment

That cuddly kitten or big brown-eyed fluffy puppy will be fun to cuddle, of course, but they’re not an impulse buy. They require time and energy to care for, particularly if they’re a younger pet who needs to be trained or an older one with extra needs. Pets are always a time commitment, and the person you’re gifting to may not be up to the task.

2. Pets Can Be Expensive

Sure, you’d be footing the adoption fee if you gave a pet for Christmas this year, but what about the future vet bills, food costs, and other expenses associated with caring for a pet? If the person you’re considering gifting to isn’t 100% committed to the idea of owning a pet, they may be unpleasantly surprised by the cost.

3. Pets Are a Long-term Commitment

Christmas day is a short-lived excitement, but a pet’s life can stretch past a decade. When someone makes the conscious decision to include a pet in their life, they know they’re in it for the long haul. When they’re surprised by a pet on Christmas day, there’s a chance they won’t be prepared for the longterm commitment.

4. Consider an Adoption Kit Instead

But, you say, you know your sister is planning on adopting a kitten soon, so why wouldn’t you just bring home a snuggly tabby and be done with it? We suggest instead putting together an “adoption kit” for the people on your list who are soon-to-be pet owners. Buy a soft pet bed, a collar, a snazzy bowl, and even a few toys and put together a themed gift. You’ll not only be one of Santa’s best elves, but you’ll also be avoiding all the pitfalls of giving a pet as a gift. You can even include an offer to accompany your friend or family member to the shelter to choose their new best friend.

Have questions about caring for your pets this holiday season? Give us a call anytime.

Topics: Pet Care, Puppy Care