Consider time spent caring for your pets.,
Calculate space requirements for your pets.,
Make sure you have the ability to care for your pets.,
Count the number of pets you already have.,
Create a budget.,
Consider what you could spend your money on without pets.,
Make sure all your needs are being met.,
Pay for medical care.,
Find out what the rules are.,
Check city, county, and state laws.,
Make sure all pets are licensed.,
Consider any children in the house.,
Be courteous of others.,
Be aware of pet hoarding.,
Find a new home for excess pets.,
Volunteer or give money to support animal rescue groups or shelters.
Cleaning, feeding, grooming, exercising, and ensuring a supply of fresh water is available for your animals takes time. See how long it takes you each day to properly care for all the animals you own. Compare this with the amount of free time you have available after other obligations are met, such as work, school, family time, etc. Make sure you won’t be neglecting another area of your life to care for all your animals.
Always remember to take care of your pets. If you don’t have time to take care of them all or don’t remember which ones you have taken care of that day, you may have to get rid of some of them.
Some animal types will require different maintenance. A long-haired dog, for example, probably needs to be brushed daily, while a cat can groom himself. Bird and hamster cages need to be cleaned out and disinfected often, with soiled bedding removed regularly. Be sure to consider the total amount of time you spend on all caretaking tasks for each animal you own each day, week, and month.
The amount of free time you have available and are willing to spend caring for pets will determine how much time you spend with them. However, if it takes over two to three hours to take care of all your animals every day, then you may already have too many pets.;
, Consider what your living arrangements are —how large is the living area and yard space you have for your animals? If you live in a small upstairs apartment without a yard, then take that into account when thinking about how many animals you can house. If you live out in the country on several acres, then you can probably keep more animals. Remember that each animal needs to have enough room to walk around and not be in a cramped space.
While space definitely needs to be considered so that everyone can live together comfortably, time is the more important factor here. If you have the time to walk your dogs, then providing a large area to run in is not as important as making sure you can take them for walks every day to meet their exercise needs.
, Your health status is an important factor to consider when getting more pets. Be aware of what you can and cannot handle without assistance. If you have difficulty getting around on your own, another pet may not be the best idea.
Also, consider your mental health status. Depression can make it very difficult to care for yourself as well as pets. Your animals rely on you, so not taking on more than you can handle is very important for everyone’s wellbeing.
Animals can cause stress and contribute to mental health problems, such as anxiety. You are responsible for your pets. The more animals you have, the more their needs, health issues and behavior can weigh on you.
, Though the number of pets you have can give you an idea of whether you already have a lot, the resources that you have available are more important than the actual number of animals you own.You need to be able to care for and provide an enriching environment for all your animals so that they can be happy and bring you joy as companions instead of more life stress.Consider what species of animals you have as well as individual temperaments and group sexual dynamics before getting another pet.
Overcrowding may have a negative effect on the pets you already have. For example, it’s recognized that in household with five cats or more there is a high likelihood of inappropriate spraying in order to mark territory. This is because the cats view the presence of other cats as a threat. The more cats, the bigger the perceived threat. So consider whether or not it’s fair to take on another pet if it adds to the stress of your existing pets.
If you can’t count all your pets, or lose count, you have too many pets and shouldn’t get any more.
While some people may look down on a person with 10 cats, as long as the owner can provide a sanitary place to live, afford medical care and emergency services for each cat as well as meet their own needs and pay bills, then there isn’t a problem.
The pack mentality can increase as you get more dogs, and this can cause more behavioral problems because the social dynamics become more complex and your ability to give attention to each animal is lessened.Mixing male and female animals can increase competition. Hormones, territorial tendencies, and breeding behavior all contribute to problems you will have to deal with. Keep this in mind before adding new pets to the ones you already have.
, Write down your expected expenses and income for the month. Use bank statements, receipts, and bills to help determine what you’re spending every month. Include your house or rent payment, car payments, insurance, groceries, gas, utilities, and other spending. Be sure to include all the expenses related to your pets, such as food, grooming, toys, bedding, supplies, medications, and healthcare costs.
Doing this will allow you to see how much you are spending on your pets every month. Consider how adding another pet will change these numbers. Is it something you still want to do?
, Looking at the numbers, what could you afford if you didn’t have so many pets? Look at yearling savings as well as monthly. This can really show you whether another pet is worth it or not.
If you didn’t have pets, could you increase your entertainment costs or pay for a car? Could you take that trip you’ve been wanting to take? Now, think about the monthly and yearly costs associated with getting another pet. What will you have to cut out of your budget and lose?
, Don’t skip meals to pay for your cats’ litter. Make sure you get the nutrition you need and can pay your bills on time. If you’re regularly making late rent payments or not going to the doctor so you can buy your dogs’ food, then you probably don’t need another pet.
, Medical care for animals can be expensive — sometimes thousands of dollars a visit. You’ll want to be able to save up money regularly in case you need to pay for emergency care or buy prescription medications for your animals. You need to be financially prepared for each animal that you own.
Keep up to date with shots. Many young animals need a series of vaccinations the first year and regular rabies vaccinations after that.
If you have multiple animals, pet insurance may be a good option. Be sure you can make your payments every month and pay any remaining balances for each pet.
, Your apartment or neighborhood may have rules that dictate the size, breed, and number of animals you can have. Check your lease, talk to your landlord or your neighborhood association to find out if there is a limit to how many animals you can keep on your property.
, Your local animal control and zoning laws probably dictate how many animals you can keep on your property. Governing bodies do this in order to prevent unsanitary, unhealthy conditions for residents. You will want to call animal control or talk to your city or county administrative office to find out what the local laws are so you can remain in compliance.
Pet hoarding, or having too many pets than you can take care of, is likely in violation of your state, city, county, or other local health and zoning laws. You could lose your pets and even your house., Many cities and counties require animals to be registered and licensed. In order to license pets, the pet often has to be spayed or neutered (or a breeder license purchased) and all shots be up to date. You can be fined or jailed if you do not have all your pets legally licensed.
, Because you are responsible for your pets and your children, having too many pets can compromise your ability to care for your children. If you can’t keep your property and home clean or neglect your animals, you can be charged with child neglect or endangerment as well. Make sure your children are taken care of before you consider getting anymore pets.
, The more animals you have, the more odors and noise they create. Don’t get so many pets that your neighbors start complaining. The size of your residence will play a factor in this as well — an apartment is going to be right next to another apartment, whereas you probably have some space between houses.
Many apartments and cities have noise ordinances. Check with yours to make sure that adding another barking dog won’t be a problem.
, Some people have a mental illness that causes them to have more than the typical number of pets. They are unable to meet minimal care requirements and cannot recognize that they have a problem — even when animals become ill or die. You will need to contact your local police or health department or humane society if you or someone you know suffers from this condition.The unsanitary conditions of pet hoarding also negatively affect the community by increasing the risk of fire, creating poor air quality, attracting pests, and encouraging the transmission of infectious diseases. It is in your best interest to report suspected pet hoarding cases.
When animals do not have access to enough food, live in unhygienic conditions or don’t get medical care, it’s considered to be animal cruelty.
If you suspect you may be a pet hoarder, seek professional help right away.
, If you find that you can’t support the pets you have or take care of them, then you need to give up some of them. You and your animals all deserve to have a good quality of life. If you can no longer give them the attention, time, space, or provide the food or medical care that they need, you must allow them a chance to get the care they deserve with someone else.
Friends, family members, and co-workers might be able to take one off your hands. If not, there are many rescue groups, shelters, and animal sanctuaries that can help.
Put an add up in your local paper, at a local pet shop, feed store, or on an online site like craigslist.com for the animals you need to give up.
, If you can no longer take care of extra animals, you can still help out in other ways. Support documented 501(c)(3) corporations with a reputation for providing high-quality animal care however you can. Your local shelter can always use your help as well.