Photo Credit: RSPCA

What to Consider Before Getting a Pet

Adoption houses receive too many re-homed animals due to inappropriate or impulsive choices.  Take the time to work through these family requirements before making your decision.


Pets require consistent and sometimes constant care.  With more people working from home pet ownership has increased but ask yourself, will you always be working from home?  Make sure you consider your longer-term work arrangements before you take the plunge. 

Whether your pet will be indoor or outdoor while you are away, here are some questions to consider if you are going to be away from home for long periods of time:

  • Is there a suitable, dry, shaded sheltered area?  
  • Will they be able to toilet in a safe and hygienic place?  
  • Will their water and food source be protected from sun?  
  • Is the pet’s run-zone fenced and secure?  
  • If you are renting, are pets allowed?
  • Do you have time to groom and play with your pet daily? 

Exercise and Training

If you are unsure how much exercise and training is appropriate give our recommended Dog Wise Trainer a call for advice on 0400 707 388.

A dog will need at least one breed-appropriate walk every day in order to keep them happy, healthy and socially stimulated.  Less exercise for a dog will mean greater settling problems at home: chewing, digging and other unwanted behaviours will be more prominent.

Dogs and cats require training if they are to learn how to fit into our lives in a socially acceptable way.  Taking this step when they are young will set you up for a happy life together. 

Cost and Insurance

Look at the longevity of the pet you are considering.  The average life of a dog is approximately 12 years while a cat is more like 20.  Longevity is of special consideration for exotic pets as some birds and reptiles can live a very long time.  This means succession planning may be required before taking on this responsibility.

Food, occasional boarding, microchipping, training, annual vaccinations, annual health checks, desexing, annual worming, regular flea and tick and possible ongoing procedures should all be factored into the cost of pet ownership.  Speak to our staff on 9499 4010 to get an idea of what these costs are and how to plan for them.  

Pet insurance varies greatly from type of cover to refund limits.   We suggest calling Vet’s Choice on 1800 999738 for a bread specific quote and comparing to other providers before you make the decision to own a pet.  


Allergic reactions are one of the most common reasons for pet-rehoming.  Do your homework thoroughly and spend time with friend’s pets to make sure you or your family will not react adversely before making the commitment.  

If possible, spend some time with the animal you are planning to adopt to ensure their temperament and personality is in line with your expectations.  For example, a pet that is overly boisterous may be too much to handle for one potential owner while a pet that is subdued and calm in temperament may be a potential disappointment to another. 


Do you have a pet at home already?  Integrating a new pet into your home should be done with care and consideration.  Settling success depends greatly on the age, species, breed, environmental situations, etc.  Call us for advice on bringing a new pet home on 9499 4010 or ask our recommended trainer for help.

Adoption Houses and Breeders

Adoption houses are an excellent place to start.  Run purely for the safety and welfare of domestic pets, these organisations are will help you find a good match for your requirements.  They will be open and honest about the animal’s temperament and health status and their suitability for your specific lifestyle. 

If the world of adoption looks too confusing, call us and we can point you in the right direction.  Otherwise check out some of these options below.

There are also breed specific adoption houses so doing some research will help your decision-making process.  

If you are set on a specific breed and a breeder is what you are looking for, make sure you choose yours very, very carefully.  Not all breeders are equal, particularly in NSW where anyone can become a breeder and they are less regulated than other states.  Ask lots and lots of questions and visit the breeder.  Only by seeing where and how the animals live, what their parents are like, what they are fed and how they are exercised and handled will you know if they are doing it right.  Be careful not to support irresponsible breeders. 

Check papers for genetic disease screening and make sure you know if your pet is microchipped, desexed, vaccinated or if this is your responsibility when the animal becomes yours.  

Either way, a trip to the vet to do a quick puppy health check is a must as soon as they arrive.  

Emotional Commitment

Talk to other pet owners, they are always happy to share stories of pets and their antics.  Get advice, call trainers, adoption houses, breeders and insurance companies.  Do your homework and plan ahead. Impulse decisions can often lead to disappointment and when a pet’s life is being considered, you have a duty to make correct and practical decisions.

Still unsure if you are ready to take the plunge?  Call the Pymble Vet on 9499 4010 and we can help answer some of your questions. 

Other Sources of Information

There is a lot of information on the internet to guide and advise you.  When in doubt simply give us a call, we are here to help.  9499 4010.

The RSPCA has an excellent guide to help you further


  • Vets Choice
  • Dog Wise Behaviour and Training