Giving or purchasing a pet as a Christmas present may seem like an exciting way to celebrate the holidays, but it’s strongly encouraged that you take a pause before bringing new paws into your home.
The Central Alberta Humane Society says pets can be a great gift just as long as you do your research.
“We actually think that it’s ok to give a pet for the holidays,” says Tara Hellewell, Executive Director for the Central Alberta Humane Society. “But there are some things you need to know.”
Hellewell says they are “very careful” when working with people on adoptions, saying, “We have adoption consultation and we ask a lot of questions to make sure that it’s the right decision for everyone.”
The Central Alberta Humane Society has a number of guidelines for those considering adding a furry friend to their family during the holiday season, one of them being “no surprise pets.”
“Everybody needs to agree and be involved in the decision of owning an animal because it’s a big commitment,” Hellewell says. “All family members have to be present for an adoption at our organization. Always make sure everyone agrees to the work and the commitment that’s involved.”
Hellewell adds it’s also important to consider who’ll be around your home during the holidays before adding a pet into the mix.
“Sometimes the holidays are a good time to have an animal because you maybe have some extra time off work. But it’s not going to be a good time to bring a new pet home if you’ve got all the relatives over for dinner and it’s just a crazy madhouse. If it’s quiet and calm, that’s a good time to bring an animal home.”
Currently, the Central Alberta Humane Society is looking to find homes for the over 200 cats they are currently sheltering. They have another 200 felines on a waiting list to get into their facility.
“Central Alberta has really experienced a cat overpopulation crisis this year,” Hellewell points out. “All of our animals are spayed, neutered, vaccinated and microchipped. They are ready to go.”
Adoptions at the Central Alberta Humane Society are done by donation, meaning you can choose how much to give to them in exchange for your new pet.
Also this holiday season, the Central Alberta Humane Society has launched its first ever “For the Love of Animals Lottery” to raise funds for the upcoming year. All proceeds from the cash lottery will go to support the veterinary and medical care of the abused, lost and unwanted pets awaiting adoption.
For more information pet adoption or the lottery, visit www.cahumane.com.
(Troy Gillard, BIG 105)
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