Free Pets – The Benefits and Drawbacks

beagle puppyIf you’re looking to add a new furry friend to the family but aren’t interested in spending thousands of dollars on a purebred puppy or kitten, you may consider your less expensive options including looking for a free pet.

Free pets may be found online such as websites like Craigslist or Kijiji, a friend or neighbor whose pet they can no longer care for, or a stray or rescued pet that you or a friend found on the street. They might also be found in shelters that are overcrowded and in a hurry to make room.

Before committing to a free dog or cat, it is important to consider the benefits and drawbacks of getting a free pet.

Positives

  • Adding a furry best friend to your family
  • A pet that comes from a previous home may already be housebroken
  • The pet may already be socialized and trained
  • You’ll save money
  • Not supporting puppy mills

Negatives

  • The pet’s health history may be unknown
  • The pet may have current health issues that will end up costing a lot of money in veterinary care
  • The pet may have behavioral or training issues
  • Rehoming a pet can be stressful on the pet, leaving you to deal with the effects such as accidents in the house, separation anxiety, and destruction
  • Your options for a pet will be very limited as opposed to going to a shelter where you can choose from many different pets to find the one right for you

They still cost money
Though obtaining your new pet may have had no cost, it is important to remember that pets are a long-term commitment and free pets are not cost-free. Before deciding to welcome a new dog or cat into your life, be sure to consider the expenses that you will incur:

  • siamese cat laying floorFeeding
  • Bedding
  • Toys
  • Veterinary visits
  • Spay/neuter
  • Rabies vaccine
  • Flea medications
  • Pet license
  • Grooming supplies
  • Etc.

There are also potential unexpected costs for injuries or illnesses that may arise, or damage to your home or belongings that may need to be replaced.

About Stacy @Trupanion

Stacy Kowalchuk is a dog mom to her rescued Whippet-mix, Ellie. During the week, you can find Stacy surfing (the internet, that is) and managing Trupanion's presence in the social media world. In her free time, Stacy likes to bake, especially cupcakes! To balance her culinary affinity, she also likes to stay active, especially with activities that include her dog such as hiking and going to dog parks.

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