Pros and Cons of Adopting Vs. Buying a Pet

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Adopting Vs. Buying a Pet

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You have decided to get a new fur kid in your home. To ensure he settles in well, you have already de-cluttered your living space and bought some food and water bowls, a bed, and playing toys. Everyone in your family is happy. But one question keeps disturbing your mind: whether to adopt the pet from a shelter or buy from a breeder.

Typically, there are merits and demerits to both options, and it’s a matter of deciding which one suits you most. If you’re wondering whether to adopt or buy a pet, read on to learn more.

Adopting a Pet

This involves getting a pet from a shelter. Typically, pets in shelters are rescued animals, or they have been surrendered by their owners due to unavoidable circumstances such as travel. Contrary to common misconceptions, most pets in shelters are not there because of behavioral problems.

Pros of Adopting a Pet

The benefits of adopting a pet include:

I. You Help Save Lives

As earlier mentioned, some of the pets in the shelters are rescued animals. This can mean being rescued from abusive owners or from straying in the streets.  Unfortunately, overcrowding is a serious problem in many shelters because of the high number of animals that need rescuing out there. By adopting a pet, you ensure that the shelter has an added space to save another animal.

II. Wide Variety of Breeds

Most shelters have a wide variety of breeds that you can choose from. Whether you are looking for a complete mutt, a pure-breed, or a mixed breed, they will take care of your needs. And that’s not all. Some shelters will allow you to choose between different pets, such as dogs, cats, rabbits, among others. You may think that you need a dog only to visit a shelter and realize that a cat fits your home better.

III. They are Already Trained

Most pets in shelters have already received basic training. You won’t spend a lot of time conducting potty training or teaching them how to use the eating bowls. This is especially important for someone who doesn’t know how to conduct proper pet training or a person whose job doesn’t allow them enough time to train their pet.

IV. It’s Cheaper to Adopt than Buy a Pet

Most shelters will only charge you a small adoption fee, lesser than what you would pay from purchasing a pet. Other shelters will ask you to donate any amount in exchange for a pet, which is important as your money will be used to advance a noble cause.

Again, most animals in shelters are vaccinated and spayed or neutered, especially if you are adopting a mature pet. This saves you a lot of these expenses, so you can focus on receiving hugs and kisses from your fur kid.

V. Adopting Makes You Aware of What Kind of a Pet You are Getting

The staff in shelter homes can tell you the personality of the pet you are getting because they have already conducted temperament evaluations on them. You get to know what kind of a pet you’re getting and how to handle them, for example, when they are sad or bored. Besides, if you’re adopting a mature pet, you already know their size, which is not the case if you are buying a pup from a pet store.

Cons of Adopting a Pet

Adopting also comes with its demerits, which include:

I. It’s Difficult to Get the Exact Pet Breed You Want

As much as there are pure-bred pets in shelters, most of them are mixed-breeds. You may have to move from one shelter to another before getting the exact breed you are looking for.

II. Some of the Shelter Pets May Carry Emotional Scars

If a pet had a very dark past that involved physical abuse or abandonment, he might not have fully recovered from the ordeal. As a result, he may show increased sensitivity, fear, or anxiety once he gets into a new environment. In such a case, it’s advisable to be patient and more loving to assure him that he is in a safe place.

Buying a Pet

If you don’t want to adopt a pet, you can also choose to buy one from a professional breeder or a pet store.

Disclaimer: Before engaging a breeder, ensure they are responsible people who are interested in furthering the breed and not just making a few bucks.

Pros of Buying a Pet

Buying a pet has its benefits which include:

I. You Can Get Full Background Information on the Pet

Responsible breeders and pet store owners document all information regarding their pets. They will tell you everything about the pet, including his behaviors, personality traits, socialization, health history, and breed characteristics. And they can also provide you with official papers containing this information, so you can always refer when you want to learn about the breed.

This background information is critical when it comes to living with a pet. For example, if you have a dog breed type known to be highly athletic, you can organize games and outdoor activities to keep them active.

II. You Can Meet the Parents of Your Pet

If you are buying a kitten or a pup from a breeder, it would be interesting to meet their closest family members, especially their parents. First, this gives you a rough idea of how your pet might look when they become older. It also allows you to observe first-hand the behavioral traits of the lineage and assess if there are noticeable health problems.

III. The Pets Have Undergone Genetic Health Testing

Breeders conduct genetic health testing on their pets to see if they are carrying inherited genetic problems. If there is a need for special medical considerations, you get to know in advance, and you can decide to go on with the purchase or choose another pet.

IV. Some Breeds are Bred for Solid Temperaments

Some pet breeds can show bad temperaments, such as anger and violence, which can be challenging to handle, especially for a new owner. For this reason, you might want a pet that has been bred to have a solid temperament.  While this isn’t a guarantee that they will maintain the right temperament even in their old age, the chances are high that they will be a good pet.

Cons of Buying a Pet

The cons of buying a pet include:

I. It’s Expensive

Buying a pet is more expensive than adopting one. Some breeders will charge up to $1500 for a puppy, depending on the breed and location. And not forgetting the other expenses that come with the pet, such as vaccinations, multiple vet checks, and spaying or neutering charges.

II. Most Breeders are only Doing it for the Money

Finding a breeder who is genuinely interested in advancing a breed can be difficult. Most of them focus on quantity, and some of the places where the pets are bred are overcrowded and not up to standards. This is abuse on animals.

III. You Need to Train Your Pet

Training a pet can be difficult. You might find that your pup keeps on pooping and peeing everywhere, no matter how you insist on potty training. He may also be obsessed with chewing your stuff, and it will take lots of patience and practice to drop that habit. If you don’t know how to conduct training, you might also need to invest in learning before buying a pet.

The Bottom Line

Both adopting and buying pets have their pros and cons. As an aspiring pet owner, you should review both options to see which one suit you best. Having said that, if we have to choose which of the two options is better, we would have to go with adoption, for the simple fact that it allows us to save the lives of abandoned pets in our communities.

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Sable M. is a canine chef, professional pet blogger, and proud owner of two male dogs. I have been an animal lover all my life, with dogs holding a special place in my heart. Initially, I created this blog to share recipes, tips, and any relevant information on healthy homemade dog treats. But because of my unrelenting passion to make a difference in the world of dogs, I have expanded the blog’s scope to include the best information and recommendations about everything dog lovers need to know about their canine friends’ health and wellbeing. My mission now is to find the most helpful content on anything related to dogs and share it with fellow hardworking hound lovers. While everything I share is in line with the latest evidence-based veterinarian health guidelines, nothing should be construed as veterinary advice. Please contact your vet in all matters regarding your Fido’s health.