Updated: Jan 12, 2021
Adopting a pet is a big (and exciting!) step. There are a lot of things to consider, from choosing the right pet for your lifestyle to deciding where to adopt from.
The Humane Society of North Texas is committed to helping pets and people! We want you to find your perfect match at the shelter and there are many ways to do so.
Dog or Cat?
There are dog people, there are cat people, there's even snake, ferret, and parrot people. If you have no previous pet ownership experience, and you're wondering which one you may be, consider your personality preferences and lifestyle. It can be a tough decision, but generally speaking, dogs require more attention while cats are more independent. But if you like to have a constant cuddle buddy and don't mind your furry friend following you into the bathroom, a dog may be perfect for you.
It’s less about ‘dog vs cat’ and more about which animal would best suit your lifestyle, taking into account your activity levels, the space you have at home, whether you have children or not, and how much time you can give to a pet.
Tell-Tale Signs That You're A Dog Person
If you’re an energetic “outdoorsy” type who loves keeping active, a dog may be the right choice for you. Dogs need lots of stimulation, fresh air and regular walks, so they’re best suited to people who have a backyard, live in rural areas or have easy access to parks and open spaces.
Well-trained dogs can be taken on trips and enjoy days out and traveling. Unlike cats, they’re not naturally solitary animals, so they shouldn’t be left alone all day – if you work long hours or have a very demanding job, think about whether you can give them the full attention they deserve. You’ll also need to set aside time to train them and groom them.
There are lots of different types of dog breeds available, ranging in size, shape, temperament and hairiness, so you should take these individual differences into account as well if you’re thinking about getting a dog. Ultimately, if you have the space and time, you’ll be rewarded with a pet who is an empathetic, playful, protective and faithful life-long companion.
Tell-Tale Signs That You're A Cat Person
If you have limited indoor space, a busy lifestyle or simply want a more independent pet, you might be better suited to a cat rather than a dog. Cats are relatively quiet and are happy to be left alone to sleep and entertain themselves for most of the day. They don’t need walking, so cats are often well-suited to less active people. They do enjoy social interaction, though, and love being played with. Regular grooming is important too, especially if you have a long-haired cat.
Cats don’t really need as much indoor space as dogs, especially if they have safe access. Even without outside access, cats can be content as long as they are fed an appropriate diet and have access to a litterbox, toys and scratching posts to keep their minds and bodies busy. It’s also essential that you interact with them frequently, so if you’re going away you will need to find somebody to look after them.
Although they don’t tend to show the boundless energy that dogs do, cats often prove to be more self-sufficient and make loving, affectionate, relaxing and entertaining pets.
Still Can’t Decide? A lot of people love cats and dogs equally, and under the right conditions the two can get along quite happily in the same household if you give them time to get to know each other. For more advice on introducing new pets to the fold, see our guides on introducing your dog to other pets or introducing your cat to other pets. If you really can’t choose between a cat or dog and are able to offer a good home to both, a puppy and kitten raised together will usually learn to live with each other right away, and may even become the very best of friends!
Choosing The Right Pet For You To find the perfect pet for you, you’ll have to do some research. By exploring various breeds, their energy levels, grooming needs and more, you can ensure the dog, cat, or other small mammal you bring into your home fits seamlessly into your life.
The Humane Society of North Texas is here to help! View all available pets on here. Call our shelters to discuss our available pets, schedule a time to visit, and our Adoption Counselors will be happy to assist you in finding you the right pet to fit your home.
Wherever you choose to get your pet, we hope we’ve helped you in your search to find a companion to enrich your life with a lot of love and adventure.
Thank you to our partners at Purina for the original content used in our blog.
Pets and People, Saving Each Other™
HSNT’s mission is to act as an advocate on behalf of all animals and to ensure their legal, moral and ethical consideration and protection; to provide for the well-being of animals who are abandoned, injured, neglected, mistreated or otherwise in need; to promote an appreciation of animals; and to instill respect for all living things.