I'm Having Puppy-Fever --- But Here's How I Know I'm NOT Ready For A Pet
Recently, I've fallen completely in love with two dogs -- which has, of course, given me a pretty bad case of puppy-fever!
I've always wanted to be a pet owner ... especially before settling down to have kids; so having these two furry friends in my life got me thinking... Maybe it's time for me to settle down and get a dog of my own?
I'm an avid dog lover and have been around pets all my life, so I figured I must be the perfect candidate to be a dog owner right?
But here's the thing -- after experiencing dog-ownership second hand from both my sister and my really close friend, I realize now that there's a lot more to it than just finding a dog I love and bringing him home with me.
There are parts of pet ownership that I didn't take into account.
Of course, there's the financial strain that comes after bringing a pet home, like:
the necessities (collar, leash, crate, puppy pads, dog treats, toys, etc)
monthly food bills
vet bills (shots, neutering, and anything else that may come up)
...and so much more...that just isn't in the budget right now.
But, there is also an adjustment both emotionally and to my lifestyle that I'm not ready or willing to undertake.
At first, having a pet seems pretty simple, but, truth be told, it's actually pretty hard and requires a total overhaul of your life.
Yes -- there are the absolutely priceless benefits to owning a furry friend, like unconditional love and companionship, but just like with kids, they require a lot of time, attention, and patience that their owners (or parents) have to be ready to give.
A new pet, particularly a puppy, requires a pretty strict schedule ad routine for both walks and training; and, especially in those early days, they need someone to be home.
This means no more spontaneous dinners or drinks after hours with friends; or impromptu travel ----unless you have an on-call petsitter, money for the very expensive pet hotel, or plans to travel with your pet (which also means finding a pet-friendly hotel or Airbnb).
Being a pet owner also requires you to give up a lot of freedoms when it comes to being selfish, because...well.. your pet needs you!
It's a beautiful thing to own a pet! But it also requires structure and stability and integration into your life that you have to be ready and willing to give.
Unfortunately, after realizing this, I had to come to terms with the fact that I'm just not there yet.
I love my freedom to be spontaneous, to have on the fly sleepovers with my friends, and the flexibility to go any and everywhere without having to wonder if a hotel or cafe (when I want to pop in and grab a smoothie while I'm out for a walk) is pet friendly.
Despite my growing puppy- fever, I know that my unwillingness to give up my freedoms means I'm not ready for the responsibility of owning a pet just yet.
And until that time comes, I'll just have to cool my pet-fever, and enjoy loving my two puppy pals from a distance.