Please consider these things BEFORE you get a puppy, kitten, or any other animal.

A free puppy or kitten is NOT free. There are supplies, food, shots, neutering and other vet care that you will be responsible for. There may also be damages to repair, as puppies (and some kittens) are known to chew and have accidents.

A pet is a living, breathing, feeling thing that needs more than to be tied to a doghouse, locked in a kennel, or shut away in a cage for it's whole life. They need food, water, shelter, exercise, training, vet care and ATTENTION!

Do not get a pet if you think your landlord is not going to let you keep it. Always check FIRST! It is very stressful and traumatic for animals to be shuffled from home to home. They form strong attachments to their families and homes, and to sever these without a very good reason is cruel and irresponsible.

Do not get a puppy for your young child. They are not mature enough to take care of it. If YOU are not ready to clean up accidents, have chewed shoes, and take the time to train both your kids and the dog, please wait until you are. A pet should be a family decision, with the adults taking care of it and the children helping, NOT the other way around. A puppy is like a child. It takes more than a couple of weeks for it to learn everything you want it to, and even then there will be accidents. Your children need to be taught how to treat animals nicely before they can even begin to learn how to take care of them.

Do not get a dog to chain outside or lock in a kennel it's whole life. Dogs are social animals that need companionship and attention.

Do not get a pet and expect it to know your rules or understand human thought and language. They need to be shown and taught the right way, not punished for unknowingly doing things wrong. They are ANIMALS, so they act and react like animals, NOT like people. It is your job to learn how to communicate with them and to train them in a way that they understand, without abusing them along the way.

Please do some research before you get a puppy. Do not get an active, energetic breed of dog if your family are couch potatoes. A border collie puppy does not belong in a small apartment (unless you are an avid jogger or plan on throwing a LOT of balls), and a Jack Russell Terrier needs exercise, training and attention or it will become destructive. If you work full time and/ or have children, make sure you are going to have time for the dog. A dog which is crated all the time will eventually have behavioral issues, and a dog left alone will become bored and destructive. Dogs also can't let themselves outside. If you won't be home for 8 plus hours, you can't expect a puppy to hold it all day. Do you or your children to go all day without going to the restroom? Then how can you expect your puppy or dog to?

Every day, there are ads for people who "don't have enough time" or "landlord won't let them keep the pet". Most of these people didn't just get their jobs or families, and most knew they signed a lease stating they were not allowed to have animals before they got the pet. They think it's easy to rehome a pet if it's too much "work". But please stop and think about how confusing and scary it is for that puppy or kitten (or dog or cat) to be taken out of the home they just got used to and moved again.

When you are rehoming your pet in a hurry (because your toddler is mean to it, you can't take care of it, your child is allergic to it, you can't house train it, you are moving or facing eviction, you just don't have time for it, etc.) many times it will end up going to overcrowded kill shelters or to another unprepared person. That puppy or kitten you just gave way without screening the new owner may now live a horrible life tied to a chain, dumped on a country road, fed to a snake, abused, starved, neglected or killed. There are good people who adopt out there, but the bad or irresponsible ones oftentimes outnumber them. Please screen potential owners, and choose one that will take good care of your pet. This is your responsibility, a responsibility you accepted when taking this animal into your home.

Things to think about BEFORE getting a pet