Important considerations when giving a pet as a gift

- The holiday season means many of you are looking for the perfect gift to give a loved one. A pet could be on the top of the gift list.

Alexandra Silver, community advocacy and outreach manager for Animal Care Centers of NYC, says adding a furry friend to the family is a long-term commitment and a decision that needs input from everyone -- not just the gift giver. You need to think about what animal would be best for that person. She says someone who isn't that active probably wouldn't want a dog because you need to walk the four-legged friend multiple times a day. That is why she says the pet's personality must be compatible with the person or family that will be taking care of it.

Time is important. After all, you're caring for a living creature. You also have to make sure you can care for the furry friend financially. However, Silver says if you adopt from a shelter like ACC the cost can be cheaper. 

For those who rent apartments, don't forget to ask if pets are allowed. And if you're worried about the space for the new pup, Silver says that shouldn't keep you from getting a man's best friend. Just make sure the dog gets plenty of exercise and enrichment outside of the apartment.

Silver says if you're not sure if the person you're getting the gift for wants a pet, she recommends coming together to ACC where adoption consultants can help you pick out the perfect furry friend you can take home. 

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