The problem with being an animal lover, or having a child that is, is that sometimes it can go too far. Seeing a dog or cat out on the streets with no home is just irresistible. You end up taking it home, then another, and pretty soon, you’ve got babies. It’s extremely difficult to find homes for the new animals so you’re more or less stuck with them. Before you know it each of the babies grows up and brings more litters into the house. It’s an ongoing process that can leave you with tags like “the cat lady down the road”.
Although it’s a heartwarming acquisition when you get a new pet having too many can be a physical, emotional and monetary burden. In addition your home can take quite a beating with fur and dander everywhere and furniture full of claw marks, not to mention housebreaking issues. And paying for shots, flea and tick medications, grooming, food and other necessities can literally break the bank.
In some cases, such as with the elderly or the mentally ill, collecting animals can be very tragic. The person takes the animals into their home out of pity but then discovers they are unable to care for the animals. But, in some cases, the person is even less willing to part with the critters. This is the reason that sometimes, when a person dies, dozens of starving animals are found left behind.
To those who have big hearts when it comes to animals it’s a good idea to limit the number of animals you bring into your home and to have all animals spayed or neutered. Some communities offer big discounts to have the surgery performed, especially for those who cannot afford it. After settling on the number of animals you can afford take other animals that are found on the street to the nearest animal shelter.
The reason some people don’t like to take animals to the shelter is that they fear the animal will be put to sleep. If the animal is sick or injured this might be the case but healthy animals are often vaccinated and put up for adoption.
A big heart is a good thing but loving animals too much can be your downfall. Your furniture will be ruined, your house will smell like animals, your budget will take a beating and your animals may not be better off than they were in the streets.
Limit your animal acquisitions to one or two per adult in the house. Even this rule of thumb can leave you with 6, 8 or even more. Don’t take in strays thinking you’ll find them a home later. Chances are you won’t. The animal population is out of control and most people simply don’t want another.
Finally, think of passing the animal by when you see it in the streets. Some animals, although they may have no collar, do belong to someone else. You taking it home will not only give you another to care for but may be robbing someone of their pet.