Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - 43

Chapter 3

When selecting a pet, you should consider the following questions carefully before making a purchase:
1. Where should I obtain a pet?
2. How much space do I have for a pet?
3. What kind of animal does my lifestyle allow?
4. How much will the animal cost?
5. What will the future bring?
6. Does everyone in the family want a pet?
7. What kind of personality do I have?
8. Is this animal a fad or status symbol?
9. What am I going to use the animal for?

where Should i obtain a pet?
The most obvious place to obtain a pet is at a pet shop; however, other options are available. Pet shops are usually conveniently located in shopping
centers where consumers can purchase pets and pet products. Pet shops
serve as intermediaries between the breeder and consumer and make a profit
on the difference between the buying price and the selling price of an animal.
Animals in pet shops may come from anywhere in the country. Consumers
have little knowledge of where the animals come from, do not know the conditions under which they were raised and shipped, or have no knowledge of
the animal's pedigree. A pedigree is the family history of the animal and list
of any titles won by its ancestors. Dogs and cats may be registered, but were
the parents healthy and bred by reputable breeders?
Purebred animal breeders are usually in business for the long haul. Their
success depends on their reputation. If they produce animals that possess
inherited defects or are ill mannered, their business will suffer. Most breeders will guarantee satisfaction and are willing to work with the customer to
achieve that satisfaction.
Purchasing directly from the breeder will save money by eliminating the
middle-person. When visiting the breeder, the buyer can observe the parents
and determine traits that can be passed on to the offspring.
Many abandoned animals end up at animal shelters, but many of these
animals would make excellent pets if given the opportunity. See Figure 3-2.
Adopting one of these animals would not only mean a person gets a wonderful pet, but it would also save the animal's life. The cost of such an animal will
be much less than one purchased from a pet shop or breeder. Shelters usually
charge only enough to cover expenses. There may be a charge to have the animal spayed (refers to a female that has had her ovaries removed by surgical
procedure to prevent her from reproducing) or neutered (refers to a male
that has had his testicles removed by surgical procedure to prevent him from
reproducing), and most shelters require this procedure. Information on the
animal will not be available unless the previous owner can be contacted.
Friends and neighbors offer one of the easiest and cheapest sources to obtain
a pet. Dogs and cats who run loose often experience unwanted pregnancies

Small Animals as Pets

43



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition

Contents
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - Cover1
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - Cover2
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - iii
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - iv
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - Contents
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - vi
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - vii
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - viii
Small Animal Care & Management - Fourth Edition - ix
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