It’s the final weekend for shopping before Christmas and some Iowans will be looking for furry new friends in pet stores. Pam Wiess, with the Humane Society office in Omaha/Council Bluffs, says dogs and cats make excellent gifts but there are several big “ifs” that need to be considered before you adopt.
“If it’s a parent gifting to a child, we’re fine with that because the primary caregiver is the one that’s actually picking out the animal,” Wiess says. Even with mom and dad’s seal of approval, she says a pet should not be an impulse buy. Smaller dogs can live upwards of 18 years, and cats, even longer.
“We do sometimes see those hasty decisions coming back through our doors,” she says. Many pets adopted before December 25th find their way back to the shelter in early January. Wiese says animals are not disposable.
“This is the time that we spontaneously buy all of those fun great bargains that we see,” she says. “Know that it’s a long-term commitment.” She says instead of giving a live animal for the holiday, purchase a gift card from a shelter and then wrap up pet supplies — like a dog dish and a collar — put them under the tree.
That gives the pet owner-to-be time to research what breed of dog or cat best fits their lifestyle.
By Karla James