I'll be honest, I am a big animal lover. I had animals all throughout my childhood and loved the fury, cuddly hair balls coming and comforting me when I felt alone or depressed or just having a friend to play with. Before we moved into our house when we were still living in our condo, that was all I could think about was owning a pet again. Because we would now have a yard we could get a dog for our daughter. Boy was I wrong, the moment we moved into our house I still pondered a pet but the thought of being tied down and not being able to travel as much bothered me. Not only would we not be able to travel but our monthly cost would go up as well. It's not cheap owning a pet and when I put it all together it would cost us a few hundred dollars extra a month. We would have to provide food, treats, pet grooming, vet services, pet insurance, etc. and it was just too much. Another factor was that I was pregnant with out son at the time and I couldn't imagine handling a new born and a puppy or younger dog at the same time.
I'm battling the thought of still owning a pet. Should I get my daughter a small animal like a hamster or guinea pig? Should we go ahead with a dog? My husband is allergic to cats so we can't get a kitten unfortunately. Guinea pigs and hamsters smell and we wouldn't really have a place to put one. We have all laminate flooring so I would be afraid the dog would scratch the floors and damage our new leather couches. We are trying to to make our house nice and have nice things. We just bought a new dining table and chair set. I know with having two kids how hard it is trying to clean up after them, cleaning up crayon and pencil off the wall and washing and sweeping the floor two times a day. Do I really want to add to the mess by cleaning up hair from a shedding dog and "accidents" because we didn't let the dog outside for a pee. My daughter has enough accidents now and again that I have to clean up.
I would love to know how other families do it. Do we wait until the kids are older and can appreciate an animal, maybe even help take care of it? I'm really torn because I want my kids to have the same childhood maybe even better then I did when I was growing up. I didn't actually have a dog until I turned ten years old but I always had cats ever since I can remember. I also had a pet hamster when I was a young teenager.
I think at this point in the game, I will wait. Wait until we can fully afford everything that goes with having an animal as well as wait until my daughter is old enough to really appreciate it and take care of it. That will be her and her brothers responsibility. I hope this is the right choice because sometimes as parents we often second guess ourselves. I feel that for our situation it is the right decision and it gives us more time to do research on what the best animal/pet would be for our family. It should never be a quick decision and you should always make sure that you can provide a loving home for the animal for as long as the animal lives. I have seen too many posts about people giving away their animal after only a couple of years because they can't afford it or can't have animals where they live. People need to really be committed before getting an animal to keep the animal shelters from being overcrowded and keep poor homeless animals off the streets.
Hopefully others will do the same and I hope you enjoyed todays read.