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Reasons You Should Never Give A Pet As A Gift

December 15, 2021

Happy Holidays! Have you been thinking of getting someone a pet? If so, you may want to think twice. Pets are gifts, but they should never be considered presents. While it may be tempting to cheer someone up by getting them a super-cute dog or cat for the holidays, this is one area where sometimes the best intentions really can backfire. Here, a Bend, OR veterinarian lists some reasons to never give pets as gifts.

A Matter Of Heart

Pets form very strong bonds with their humans. However, that’s a beautiful, and sometimes unexpected, process, and one that should happen naturally. You may think that tiny black-and-white kitten is adorable, but your loved one may prefer that orange senior cat. Sometimes people just know when they’ve found their pet. 

Unknown Circumstances

Dogs and cats are super cute, but they need lots of care. It’s just not a good idea to sign someone else up for that work, responsibility, and financial burden that entails.

Pet Welfare

Pets are living creatures, and they are very emotional. They can be very traumatized by changes in ownership. You aren’t doing Fido or Fluffy any favors by giving them to someone who isn’t ready to take on that responsibility. It’s absolutely heartbreaking to see pets get adopted, only to be returned later.

The Exception

There’s an exception to every rule. In this case, the exception would be bringing a pet into your own family, and making Christmas (or whichever holiday your family celebrates) their official Gotcha Day. For instance, if your children have been begging for a puppy, and you think it’s time, then yes, this could make for a pretty perfect holiday. However, it’s still important to think things over carefully. Make sure that you are ready, willing, and able to supervise the pet’s care.


There are other ways to give an animal loving friend a chance to connect with a living being. One option is to ‘adopt’ a wild animal, such as a whale or elephant. You can also make a donation to an animal shelter in a person’s name. If you know someone that is ready for a new pet, get them a collar and a gift certificate, and let them choose their own animal companion.

Happy holidays from Westside Pet Hospital, your local Bend, OR animal clinic. Call us anytime!

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