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Educate yourself before adopting a pet

Taking on a pet is a very serious commitment and it shouldn't be taken lightly as these animals become companions and need care just like children.

The Star-Telegram offers potential pet owners a few tips on how to prepare for the responsibility of adopting a lovable animal.

Sometimes people may make an impulsive decision and take on a pet, but if they aren't prepared to deal with the animal it often can result in them being brought back to a rescue shelter.

Potential owners are encouraged to do research and determine if they can afford a pet. Some animals may require frequent visits to the veterinarian or special medicine, so knowing these issues in advance may help prepare an owner for the financial responsibility required of them.

Of course, individuals should know that it can take some time for a new pet to adjust to their home, so they should be patient with the animal and enforce what is acceptable behavior for the home.

Those who are looking to add a furry friend to their family may want to look into adoption, as six to eight million pets are cared for by shelters every year, according to the Humane Society. 
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