It sounds obvious, but a pet is a lifelong commitment that requires careful consideration before bringing them home to join your family. Unfortunately, many people forget this and end up with pets they don’t have the time, capacity or interest in caring for long term. To ensure that you avoid making this mistake, consider each of these questions before choosing which pet, is right for you…

How active are you?

If your lifestyle isn’t very active, it is best to avoid adopting an active pet. While cats can be quite solitary and usually get their exercise by roaming around outside, dogs depend on their owners to keep them active with some breeds requiring far more activity and exercise than others. Failing to provide your pet with the appropriate amount of exercise will make them unhealthy and unhappy, so it’s important to consider this factor before committing to a pet.

How much time do you have?

This is one of the most crucial things to ask yourself, because the last thing you want to do is commit to a pet that needs far more of your time than you’re able to give it. Puppies and kittens require a substantial amount of time and attention – from regular vet check-ups to house training, exercising and socialising needs, they need you to help them grow into happy, healthy pups. If you feel like you don’t have enough energy or time in the day, adopting an older dog or cat may be a better idea as these guys are usually toilet trained and require less time.

With that being said, it’s important to understand that no dog or cat should be neglected no matter how old they are. So if you’re rarely home or simply don’t have what it takes to commit to loving and nurturing a pet long-term, it might be best to hold off on bringing one home.

What do you want from your pet?

Pets are an amazing source of love and company, with different breeds offering different kinds of friendship for our varying needs. If you’re looking for an energetic companion to take with you on walks, runs or to play with at the end of each day, a puppy or a kitten may be for you. Alternatively, if you want a calm friend to cuddle up to after a long, hard day at work, an older pet is likely to suit better. By not taking this factor into consideration