I rarely write on this blog, since I am (a) busy being a law student and (b) not a vegan cook. However, I do post at least once a year, and I think that there's a topic we can all agree on: the ideological and physiological allure of the Twilight series.
Just kidding. Maybe next post? Actually, I wanted to talk about something near and dear to my heart as well as yours: animals!!! In particular, rescue organizations for cast-aside pets. I am proud to have adopted my dog from a rescue organization, but there's a lot of kitties, birds, heck even hamsters out there needing a home. However, there are some pros and cons to adopting a pet, same as if you were buying your furry friend. Although I'm sure our readers possess the mental faculties to figure this stuff out on their own, I'm still going to give you my personal list:
Let's start with the cons:
(1.) Pets are expensive. Even if you don't shell out the bucks for that purebred, food costs. Vet bills cost quite a bit. Especially if they get into something that they aren't supposed to.
There's the added problem that maybe the dogs need extra health care that the rescue organization couldn't afford to provide. I remember getting my dog and realizing that if I didn't act fast, his teeth were going to start falling out in the next few years. When I got the bill for the teeth cleaning, I nearly keeled over.
The good news is that many of the rescue organizations have relationships with vets that could give a discount. Make sure to ask.
(2.) PETS NEED YOUR TIME. All money aside, a rescued dog may have to deal with emotional issues like abandonment or abuse. They may need your support, and to do that, you're going to have to be there for them. I'm lucky to live at my parents' house right now, where I have three extra people to help look after the dog if I have to leave. My dog's breed (Pomeranian) is renowned for its bonding to humans, and I know that whenever I move out he'll need the extra stimuli of someone coming over in the middle of the day when I'm working. I'm willing to let that happen, just as I'm willing to take him on walks when it's freezing outside or take playbreaks with him - because a good petowner knows the dog needs bonding time!
(3.) Housetraining issues. Many of these rescue pets (mostly dogs, but sometimes cats I've heard) may have come from situations where they were never housebroken. And may never totally be. This is a pretty big deal if you can't handle it. So talk to some experts - vets, dog trainers - and be prepared for messes. Hopefully, you can train the dog out of it, but some may never totally be able to control themselves, due to their physiology or some emotional distress that happened to them.
OK, onto the PROS:
(1.) FRIEND FOR LIFE! At least sometimes. You may have a finicky cat or dog, or they're really shy. But with the right amount of work, you should be able to revel in being their best friend. Or at least cherish a bond with the animal. My dog helped me rebound out of a bad time, and I'm very thankful to have him.
(2.) Opening extra spaces at the rescue for new animals! Rescues can often only hold oh-so-many animals, due to the limited number of extraordinary people who will foster these poor souls. So an extra spot could mean life or death to those animals that are waiting to be picked up out of high-kill shelters and into a rescue organization.
In closing, please note that there's a lot of ways to support animals even if you can't afford the time or money to adopting a friend. You can often ask vets for lists of rescue organizations around, or just google it. You can make a donation to local rescue organizations who really need the support, as well as volunteering to help out. If you come across old dog or cat toys, beds, etc. that aren't being used anymore, you could pass these on to those organizations as well. Here's hoping for a happy new year to all of our animal friends!!!!!!