Pets are an Important Responsibility
I am on the local freecycle list and every week (sometimes daily) I see several adds for people giving away pets. Occasionally, they have a really good reason and my heart just breaks for those people. Ninety percent of the time, though, they are people who shouldn't be allowed to have goldfish, let alone a cat or dog...
I'm in a little bit of a pissy mood about it. It just makes me so sad I think about leaving the list.
The following are valid reasons for giving your pet to a trusted friend:
1. Your children suddenly develop uncontrolable allergies.
2. You are temporarily moving to a foreign country (for example, to Korea for a year) with a long quarantine period and the animal would be more traumatized by the move and quarantine than it would be to drive down the street and go live with another nice family.
3. You become enganged to someone with uncontrolable allergies who is moving in (even then I would really think about whether I want the rest of my natural life to be cat-less...but that's just me).
4. You have developed a debilitating illness and can no longer physically care for your pet.
The following are STUPID reasons to give away your pet:
1. We just had a whole mess of puppies/kittens: Unless you are a professional breeder with show quality animals, please stop producing unwanted animals. There are plenty of cute puppies and kittens available for adoption.
2. It is messy/scratches things: DUH! Pets are messy. Cats like to scratch things. Rearrange stuff. Train them. Play with them. Work through it. If you can't, do us all a favor and never have children.
3. It eats all my plants: this is one I saw today that prompted me to write this. Hmmm...cat of one year...plant...cat...plant...tough call. NOT!
4. I am about to have a baby and I just don't think I have the time. Are you going to give up this first baby when you have a second...since babies take a lot of time and you just can't see managing a toddler and an infant? Again, do us all a favor and get sterilized.
5. We didn't check our lease and now we have to get rid of our pet. You are just dumb.
6. We did not realize how much a pet costs. Again, D-U-M-B AND please don't breed (kids cost more than you probably realize, too). Ever.
7. We are moving and the apartment doesn't allow pets. This one is somewhat understandable if you've unexpectedly fallen on hard times and it is a larger pet. It can be hard to find apartments in certain areas of the country that can accomodate a larger dog. If it is a smaller animal, though, and your finances are stable--find a different place to live.