Pets have been an integral part of my life. I’ve grown up with cats, dogs, lambs, calves, baby goats, horses, sheep, rabbits, birds … And that’s all I can think of straight off the bat, but that’s a considerable amount.
As an adult I love having pets, and we have a dog, cats, sheep, a goat and a horse. The thing with pets is that we often think that they will just be there doing their thing, and it won’t be much work or money to have these additions to the family flourish. They are good for kids to learn responsibility, they are good for kids to chill out with depending on their personality, and they bring a lot of pleasure.
The thing is that pets never live for a child’s full childhood, and sometimes difficult decisions have to be made. I have, in the past, had to make decisions to euthanase pets on the vets recommendations, and at other times have had to make decisions to spend considerable money to improve their health and quality of life.
Today I’m sitting here about to start an exciting part of the farming calendar year – lambing. Of course, not all of the lambs that I save over this period actually survive, but the kids enjoy the temporary responsibility and the pleasure that having pet lambs brings. But it does cost some money and take up some time to enjoy these temporary pets. I am also today missing my dog, who normally joins me during the lambing season but she is at the vets, having had surgery yesterday on her leg.
Rehabing my dog is going to take some time and energy, and of course surgery is not a cheap exercise, and yet with all the time and energy, I still love having family pets.
My midweek thought for you today is this: do you have a family pet, or are you thinking about getting a new family pet? They are a wonderful addition for your kids to interact with and can be a great way to get fit but I would caution you on 1 point. Run through all the scenarios and work out if the cost, time, energy required and money is worth it, and then pick the best pet to suit your family.