Are You Ready for Fido? How to Decide if Your Family Can Care for a Pet
IS YOUR FAMILY READY?
While we don’t know exactly why humans keep pets, one fact is certain: Millions of people love them. In fact, nearly 70 percent of households in the U.S. have a pet. But no matter what you see on your favorite dog Instagram accounts, keeping a pet isn’t endless playtime. Ask yourself the following questions before buying or adopting a furry companion.
Every family is different, and it’s important to have an honest discussion about the implications of owning a pet. If you have kids, consider how much they will be able to contribute to such a responsibility. Another factor to consider is howmuch free time you have to spend with your pet; some animals require more attention than others. To avoid major conflict down the road, discuss care and responsibility plans as a family before welcoming an animal into your home. Keeping a pet can be a source of joy for your family, but it can also be a source of stress. Before making any major choice, talk to your family members and consider what owning a pet would mean for all of you.
DO YOU KNOWWHAT YOU’RE GETTING INTO?
Owning a pet can change your lifestyle. To start, you will have to consider the animal’s well-being when hosting events or taking vacations. You will also have to make room in your budget for pet-related expenses. Additionally, some animals can live for upward of two decades. Discuss how responsibilities will change as a pet ages and what your future will look like before making the commitment.
DOES AN ANIMAL FIT YOUR LIFESTYLE?
When choosing a pet for your family, gather research from animal experts and other pet owners. Calculate the cost of owning a pet, and evaluate how that animal will fit into your lifestyle. For example, dogs are one of the most high-maintenance and expensive animals to own, but they tend to be more involved in family life than a cat or a hamster. That said, your home’s size and location may make it better suited for a smaller pet, as many larger animals require more square footage and plenty of outdoor space.
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Homemade Corned Beef
1. In a large stockpot, combine water, garlic, and all herbs and spices tomake brine. Cook over high heat until salt and sugar are fully dissolved. Remove fromheat and stir in ice. 2. Once water temp reaches 45 F, place brisket in a 2-gallon zip-close bag, pour in brine to cover, lay flat in a large container, and store in fridge. 3. Brine for 10 days, checking daily tomake sure brisket is fully submerged and brine is stirred. 4. After 10 days, remove brisket frombrine and rinse under cool water. In a large pot, cover brisket, onion, carrot, and celery with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and gently simmer for 2 1/2–3 hours. 5. Remove, slice across the grain, and serve.
• 2 quarts water • 1 cup kosher salt • 1/2 cup brown sugar • 2 tablespoons saltpeter (potassiumnitrate) • 1 cinnamon stick, broken into large pieces • 1 teaspoonmustard seeds • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns • 8 cloves garlic • 8 whole allspice berries • 12 whole juniper berries • 2 bay leaves, crumbled • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger • 2 pounds ice • 1 5-pound beef brisket, trimmed • 1 small onion, quartered • 1 large carrot, coarsely chopped • 1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
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