Providing For Your Pets
By Megan Gabel
Let’s face it. We’re not getting any younger and probably not healthier as we age. We usually think we will outlive our pets, but what if we become ill or incapacitated or die first? Kittens like Dodi can live for 20 years. A dog’s average life expectancy is 10–14 years, but varies based on size. Puppies like Red may live for 12 years. What happens to them if something happens to us? We all love our pets—what can we do to protect them?
Talk to your friends and family. Is someone willing to take your pet in should something happen to you? Our daughter has agreed to come and get our dog and bring her home to the States should something happen to us. I have a note on our kitchen bulletin board saying that and providing information on how to contact our daughter. We have friends here who have her contact information so they can let her know if something happens to us so she can come to get Daisy. She has instructions and keys to our house and our friends do too.
Prepare instructions about how to care for your pet. What does your pet eat? When? How often? Where is the food in the house? Where is it available to buy? Who is her local vet? What physical, medical, emotional (those firecrackers!) issues does she have? What should be done to help her with these problems? Make sure this cheat sheet is given to your pet’s possible future caretaker now to help in a smooth transition—just in case.
What about setting aside a little money to help take care of your pet should you not be around to do so yourself? You can even add a provision in your will.
Meet our adoptable animals at the SPA, Los Pinos 7, 152 6124, Monday–Saturday, 11am–2pm, spasanmiguel.org, and reap the joy of pet ownership. But keep in mind that showering them with love means more than food, care, shelter, and cuddles. We are responsible for their lives, even if we’re not around to handle that responsibility ourselves. They would be traumatized if something happens to us. Let’s do our best not to have that happen to them by providing for their futures.