Pets should never be used as presents for holidays

Michael McShane
News Editor

To some, that furry friend that brings you joy the moment you walk into your home sounds like the perfect gift – but think again. 

Pets make great companions and horrible gifts. You are essentially giving a living creature to another person as a gift. More often than not the pet is in its infancy or at the very least young and cute. That is where the big danger comes from. 

So many people buy puppies or kittens to give to their significant other or a younger family member for Christmas or birthday. Since it’s the holidays, there will be a spike in instances like this which means one thing – a lot of shelters are going to be getting a spike in dogs or cats. 

You may like dogs or cats. You might think having a pet is the greatest thing in the world. That’s great, but that cute pet might be something different for someone else. A cute puppy can change into a big dog in an instant and there is no possible way you can tell whether the person you’re giving the puppy to won’t take the dog to the pound or shelter in a year. 

It’s sad, but true. In fact, there have been instances where people cut the middleman and just kick the pet out of the house and the former pet goes homeless. It’s even sadder, but true. 

Sometimes a present can turn into coal very fast and it’s not hard to see why living animals such as dogs or cats shouldn’t be put in a box with a bow on top. When we get a pet, we should get it for ourselves or for a significant other that you are living with and has made it clear they are willing to take care of a pet. 

Pets, no matter how cute, are still living animals that have needs and is a full-time responsibility. You wouldn’t give a person an infant as a Christmas gift? At least I hope not. 

A responsibility is just that, a commitment, and a commitment is not a present to give someone because you don’t know how that person is – with pets, with responsibility or whether they even wanted the animal in the first place. 

Don’t have your Christmas gift based off a guess that they’ll treat the pet with care, or that they’ll treat the pet at all.

Header photo courtesy of Flickr.

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