Dr. Mike Paul explains discusses important considerations when choosing a pet.
Most people at one time or another think, “I want a puppy!" (or a kitten or a fish aquarium or whatever the case may be). That thought must be pretty common. Recent surveys indicate that while 5% of US households share their homes with at least one bird, and 10% have fish and 5% have pocket pets, the clear preferences among American pet owners are dogs (39%) and cats (33%.)
What goes in to deciding which pet will share your home and when? Unfortunately, that decision is all too often emotional and impulsive when it really should be the result of thought and careful consideration. Even the question of "when" should be thought out. Over the years I’ve known too many overwhelmed clients who elected to get a puppy at the same time that they were welcoming a baby into the family. Another example would be ‘Christmas pets’ that are overwhelmed themselves by being introduced into a family during the already busy and chaotic holidays. Or teenagers who just have to have their own pet right before they move off to college so that both the student and the pet have to navigate a lonely transition period. Acclimating a pet into your environment takes a substantial commitment of both time and energy. Be sure that you can do the process justice.
When the time is right, the choice of which pet is primarily personal preference; but lifestyle, available space, and the wishes of other family members should play a role. Owners of exotic pets (those species other than dogs and cats) often have a genuine fascination as a hobbyist or prior experience and/or interest owning non-traditional pets. If you are considering owning an exotic pet, the very first step is to educate yourself. Before you invest in expensive reptiles, valuable fish or even many birds, talk to your veterinarian. Far too many of these animals lead un-enriched lives and in fact merely exist in tanks and cages. They are extremely sensitive to their environment and may be weakened or even die if not properly cared for let alone should they have medical problems. And finding a veterinarian who is really an expert in treating fish or birds or exotic reptiles may be difficult depending on where you live. My advice is to avoid getting an unusual pet you are simply curious about or saw on television or want to own because they are currently trendy or cool. Leave them to the experts or, better yet, in nature.
Considerations: How to Choose a Pet
Clearly, all pets big or small, furry or not, can add a great depth of experience to life. Because dogs and cats have been domesticated for thousands of years and generally do well living with people, I will choose to focus on those two in specific in order to formulate some questions and considerations you should make when choosing a pet.
The first order of business is to decide if you want a dog or a cat or both. Neither are in short supply, so availability will not be an issue. Which do you like most? “Dog people” are more common than “cat people”. Which are you? Personally, I am a cat guy in spite of the fact that cats have an ill-deserved reputation for being aloof and not very friendly. Worse, they have historically been cursed with a bad public relations team. “Cats are unfriendly, mean, destructive, smelly, bad with children…” and similar thoughts contribute to the stereotypes about cats, none of which are inherently true. Most cats are delightful. In fact, I have often said “If someone doesn’t like cats, they have probably never lived with a cat.” Your cat provides a totally different experience than someone else’s cat.
Cats are relaxing, entertaining and lower maintenance than dogs. Their instincts and natural behaviors result in wonderful play and social behaviors that make them fun to just watch without quite as much personal effort as dogs typically demand. When provided with enrichment, activities and stimulation they are pretty much self-entertaining. You don’t often have to take them for a walk. While they still need some grooming they require less than dogs. They adapt well to being totally indoors, are very suitable to apartment life, and can be left alone for longer periods of time (I don’t want to over-argue my case but to encourage you to appreciate and respect cats).
Let’s assume, on the other hand, that you decide it is time to get a dog. Which dog? How big? Pure bred or mixed breed? What breed? How old? Should you buy from a breeder? Buy from a pet shop? Adopt from a shelter? Rescue a stray? The reality is there are millions of dogs and cats that need good homes. But is your home the right home? Do you have the space for the level of exercise this particular dog needs? Do you have the time? Do you understand the personality of and any likely medical conditions associated with your particular breed? You will share your home and your life with this pet for many years. Do yourself and your pet the service of making a good choice and finding the very best pet you can find.
In a future blog we will explore some of these issues in more detail but there is one primary caveat to all prospective pet owners. Understand that ALL pets come with a responsibility to provide proper nutrition, good medical care, enrichment or play stimulation, and a commitment of time for socialization. I want your pet to be a great pet. I want it to be healthy, well socialized and well behaved so that every day together will be a day you enjoy.
If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian – they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.
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Choosing a Pet
Sharing your life with an animal has great benefits and can bring you great joy. If you are thinking about adding a pet to your family, it’s best to learn about the needs of different types of pets to find one that will best suit your lifestyle.
Special Pet Items
Pets can be made permanently rideable if they are given a Ride-A-Pet Potion. This Ride-A-Pet Potion is available for 150 it can be bought through the 'Shop' menu or inside the Potion Shop. Players must buy a potion for every single pet that you want to make permanently rideable.
If a parent is riding a pet, the pet will grow bigger to accommodate the parent's size. If a baby is riding the pet, the pet will stay at its normal size.
A rabbit that drank a Fly-a-Pet potion.
Pets can be made permanently flyable (allowing the player to sit on the pet and fly it) if they are given a Fly-A-Pet Potion. This Potion is available for 295 it can be bought through the 'Shop' menu or inside the Potion Shop. Players must buy a potion for every single pet that you want to make permanently flyable both Fly-A-Pet and Ride-A-Pet Potions can be used on the same pet to make the pet flyable and rideable.
If a pet is in flying mode, it will grow white wings with a pink trail, unless its original state had wings (such as the Robin, Crow, Shadow Dragon, Parrot, etc.), which it will use as its "flying" wings. The Arctic Reindeer, Pet Rock, Reindeer, Ghost Bunny and Frost Fury pets do not need wings to fly and as such, don't gain any.
As of July 13th, 2019, it is possible to get Neon pets. In order to do so, you must place four fully-grown pets of the same type into the slots in the Neon Cave located under the main bridge. They will combine to create one neon pet, a special variation of the pet in which some of its parts glow a special color. All pets can be made neon, except non-tradeable pets like the Chick, the Scoob, Pumpkin (Pet) or Pet Rock.
To make a Neon pet rideable or flyable, you will either only need one rideable/flyable pet for it, or you can alternatively feed it a Ride-A-Pet Potion or Fly-A-Pet Potion after turning them into a Neon pet.
Mega Neon Pet
Mega Neon Pets are pets in Adopt Me! that were released on April 17, 2020. To get a Mega Neon pet, a player must place four fully-grown Neon pets of the same type into the slots in the Neon Cave located under the main bridge. These pets will then combine to create a Mega Neon Pet. These pets glow rainbow (changing colors gradually). All pets (except the Scoob, Pet Rock, Pumpkin (Pet) and Chick) can become a Mega Neon.
The same with Neon pets, you only need one Neon pet to make it fly or ride, and one pet out of that Neon to be fly or ride, so really, you only need 1 out of 16 to be fly or ride. You can also feed them a Ride-A-Pet Potion or a Fly-A-Pet Potion after you transform them.
On August 23, 2019, Golden Goldfish were added so that players could tame Penguins. Golden Goldfish cost 225 . Penguins are only found inside the Ice Cream Parlor. Players only have a 1 in 10 (10%) chance of taming a Golden Penguin the other 9 out of 10 times (90%) you will tame a normal Penguin.
As with Golden Goldfish, players can use Honey to tame a Bee. It costs 199 . Players can have a 1 in 40 (2.5%) chance of taming a Queen Bee, a 4 in 40 (10%) chance of obtaining a King Bee and a 35 in 40 (87.5%) chance of obtaining a regular Bee.
Similar to Golden Goldfish and Honey, players can use Diamond Lavender to tame a Ladybug. It costs 199 . Players can have a 1 in 40 (2.5%) chance of taming a Diamond Ladybug, a 4 in 40 (10%) chance of obtaining a Golden Ladybug and a 35 in 40 (87.5%) chance of obtaining a regular Ladybug.
In the Lunar New Year (2020) event, players could purchase a Rat Box for 345 at the Lunar New Year Platform. Players have a 14 in 15 (93.33%) chance of getting a Rat and a 1 in 15 (6.66%) chance of getting a Golden Rat.
In the Halloween Event (2020) event, players could purchase a Bat Box for 1,000 in the Halloween Shop. Players have a 4 in 5 (80%) chance of getting a Bat and a 1 in 5 (20%) chance of getting an Albino Bat.
During the Lunar New Year (2021) event, Players players could purchase an Ox Box for 350 at the Lunar New Year Platform. Players have a 6 in 10 (60%) chance of getting an Ox and a 3 in 10 (30%) chance of getting a Lunar Ox and a 1 in 10 (10%) chance of getting a Metal Ox from an Ox Box.