by: Sandra Murphy
The old line, “He followed me home, can we keep him?” used to get a kid a dog or cat of his own. In today’s homes, it’s not that easy. Choosing a pet is a personal choice not to be taken lightly nor made on another person’s behalf. A surprise pet is a bad idea.
Rather than gift a pet during the holidays or at any other time, give a coupon to be redeemed after extensive and careful consideration. Involve the whole family in listing pros and cons, deal breakers and must-haves. Lifestyle adjustments by everyone are to be expected, but pets shouldn’t make all the sacrifices. Available time and space, daily routines and costs all matter in determining the perfect pet.
Account Coordinator for z11 Communications, public speaker and author Michael Holtz, of Knoxville, Tennessee, admits he would’ve fallen in love with any dog. His wife, Sarah, searched to find the one that would work best for them. Based on past experience, Sarah knew that she didn’t want a herding, massive, shedding or miniature pet. She was drawn to Labrador types and found Marley, a golden/basset mix rescue that moved in as Michael was undergoing cancer treatment.
“She’s calm, playful and wants to be near, but doesn’t smother, is stubborn, yet trainable, and mostly obedient,” Sarah says. “Plus, she’s content to nap or go on three-mile walks. Walking Marley helped Michael’s recovery after surgery. She was good with just sniffing the green off of a blade of grass until he was ready to head home.” READ MORE