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Bringing home a pet.

              On my daily walks with Chikoo, I see children eyeing him  longingly, calling out to him, and at times, nagging their parents to get one for them.  Kids!  You never know what they would demand next! Sometimes, they ask for the latest toys, and at others, they ask for a younger sibling. The wish for toys can be granted, but do all of you grant them the 'sibling wish'? No. So, I wonder, why do some of you grant them the 'pet
wish'?
     Getting home a pet is not like getting home a piece of furniture, or a stuffed toy. It is a living being, with its  own set of needs, likes, dislikes and most important , its feelings.  Your children will grow up into independent adults, who won't be needing your attention after a particular age. But, with pets, it is a different story altogether. Pets are babies, who never 'grow'. They remain babies all their lives, depending on their masters for every single thing: their food, health and well being. And, it is this fact that people fail to take into consideration.
     I read gory tales of families getting home pets because the children took a fancy to those cute- looking creatures in the pet shops. But, after the initial enthusiasm wore off, they got tired of the continuous care taking, and decided that they had had enough. So, off went the pet, either discarded on the mean streets to fend for itself, or at the dog shelter, to live a life of misery, away from its family. Do you have any idea how heartbreaking that is for those innocent creatures? Just because they don't speak their minds, we can't be taking them for granted, can we?
    It breaks my heart when I read such tales of ill-treatment towards animals, especially pet animals. Getting home a pet must be done only if one wants to have a pet, and not because one has to have a pet. The difference between  'want to' and 'have to' makes all the difference to that life that comes to depend on you, trust you, love you!  Just giving in to children's demands  and getting them whatever
they desire is really not a sign of good parenting, is it? A life is at stake here. You ought to take that into consideration.
    And, once you get home a pet, then taking good care of its health must be made a way of living- a matter as paramount, as  the well being of your child.  Feeding the pet anything and everything because it is an animal will only land you in trouble in the later years, when your pet grows old. One just needs to remember the adage, "As you sow, so shall you reap."
    A balanced diet, ample exercise, annual vaccination, regular deworming and daily grooming, and training should become a part of life, for the pet as well as for you. Taking him/her for a walk is actually what bonds the two of you for life! I have seen some families sending their pets for a walk with the building watchman or somebody appointed for the job. Do you know how that person treats your pet behind your back? Would you entrust your child's responsibility into someone you know nothing about? If you can't find time to take your pet for a walk, please, do not  even think of getting home anything other than a rock for a pet.
     Leaving your pet home alone is another issue that needs to be worked upon. And, with a lot of time and patience, this, too, can be achieved.  Dogs are pack animals, for whom the pack is their universe. Therefore, the  most important thing to remember here is that you are their family, their pack. And, if you were to abandon them, imagine the heartache they would suffer from!
    To sum up my rant (if you would like to call it that!), bringing home a pet needs to be done only after a lot of deliberation. You need to remember that  it's a  matter of a life.   A life that could in turn shower you with its unconditional love and affection and unwavering faith for as long as it stays with you in your world.
 
   

Comments

  1. Great Post - Informative yet succinct

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  2. Wonderful post, Shilpa! Rant away, Girl! I agree that a pet needs love and care all its life. Getting one can't be an impulsive decision where you change your mind the next day. Pets are definitely a commitment but so worth it for the unconditional love you get in return. Having a pet is good for your health in every way (well, except if you're allergic to fur ;))

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    Replies
    1. True, Cat. It can't be an impulsive decision and I so hope people realised it sooner.
      And yes, having a pet is really good for the health! Make a note, people!

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  3. Shilpa, S loves Doggies so much he almost brought one home. I am sure we will have one eventually, but just not ready for it now though.

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    1. :-) Get one only when you are ready! That way you both will be able to enjoy each other.

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  4. We have had pets at home for the last 30 years. The fact that they are a part of our lives and family is now enshrined within our DNA, I think. And yes, it really does anger me too when you hear of dogs being let off once they grow old... shows the character of the person more than the dog!

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    1. How true, Roshan. How you treat your pets actually shows your character, more than the pet's.

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  5. I have grown up with pets and I can understand how they are a part of the family. We would never leave our pet alone overnight. My mum used to make sure there was always someone at home attending to it. Having a pet is beautiful and nurturing ... and I hope parents understand that it;s not a birthday or christmas gift.

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    1. True, Rajlakshmi. Pets aren't some stuffed toys you get home on an impulse for your kids' birthdays or as christmas gifts.

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  6. I like how you weaved in those points into a post. Yes, lots of people who keep pets seem to treat them worse than prisoners. I don't get it. You should treat the pet as a family. It's as nurturing an experience as parenting is.

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    1. True, Sid. I wish everyone would realise this simple thing!

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  7. Wonderful post Shilpa! Hope many could read it, especially those who jump into getting a pet without thinking too much about the responsibilities.... I am a cat person myself... Unformtunately my son has fur allergies, so only fish for us:-) Hugs

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    1. Thank you, ELi! Yes, that is the reason I wrote this post. I, too, hope people read it before getting home a pet, rather than getting one on an impulse and then repenting for the rest of their lives.

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  8. No Shilpa this blog post is absolutely not a rant!
    You know about me and my love for animals. It doesn't exist.
    But what you've said is true. I've seen cute little puppies turn into big mean dogs just because they weren't cared for nicely by their owners.
    Amazing post, Animal Crusader! <3

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    1. Thank you, Mithila!
      And, thank you for calling me Animal Crusader! :-) There needs to be somebody who would speak on their behalf, right?

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  9. I absolutely agree with u Shilpa. I also know couple of friends & relatives who got pets like dog or rabbit & then left them helpless. Mostly it happens with fish. They either die in fish tan
    K or they r thrown away with tanks.
    I totally agree with u that one should not get pet in an excitment but bring one only when they r physically & mentally prepared for it.
    And yes, one more thing please..leave the birds on their own. Dont imprison them, God gifted them with wings to fly. Just imagine if someone tied ur legs when they r actually given to u for walking.

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  10. Beautiful, hard-hitting post, Shilpa. I am glad that you shared this with me. Thank you for writing this. I hope more people will carefully think through their decision of bringing home a pet.

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