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Adoption Basics: Choosing a Pet

With so many amazing pets available for adoption at your local animal care center, how do you decide which pet to adopt? It’s common to walk into an animal care center with a predetermined idea of the type of animal you wish to adopt based on color or breed. But we think it’s best to choose a pet based on your lifestyle and activity level.

Take a moment to consider the questions below and then assess the activity level of your ideal pet.

  1. Do you have an active or low-key lifestyle?
  2. Do you have adequate space in your apartment or house for a new or additional pet?
  3. Is everyone in your family committed to caring for a pet?
  4. How many hours in the day will you be home to care for your pet?
  5. Do you have young children who like to explore and investigate? (If so, consider adopting an adult dog or cat as they may be more patient with little fingers poking or pulling fur. Also, make sure all interaction between a young child and your pet is supervised by an adult.)

A low energy cat or dog prefers your relaxed lifestyle and generally seeks quiet time to share with you. Quite often they are contented with a snuggly place to sleep and prefer limited exercise. If you would like a low energy pet, consider adopting a senior cat or dog from your local animal care center.

Balanced-energy pets may be fun loving and energetic but also enjoy some down-time to themselves. Middle-aged pets in any size make wonderful pets.

If you prefer a high-energy pet to match your active lifestyle, then consider a young, medium to large-sized dog for hiking or daily long walks. For cat lovers remember that kittens less than one-year of age will play and explore for hours and provide your family with continuous entertainment.


The Michelson Found Animals Foundation's mission of saving pets and enriching lives is made possible by the generous contributions of Dr. Gary Michelson and Alya Michelson.

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