Loving your pets as if they were babies – Part 1

It’s essential to love your pet as if it were a baby. As a pet owner, you are responsible for the health and well-being of your pet in the same way you would be responsible for a child. You are bound by both moral and legal duties to care for the animal and provide everything it needs. Your pet requires emotional care just as much as healthcare.

Think about it this way: If you don’t feed a child, it starves. It becomes ill, weak and will eventually die. The same is true for a pet. As a domestic animal, it is relying almost entirely on you for its food. Thus its survival depends on you, the owner. You must make sure it has a sufficiently nutritious diet, plenty of water and medications if it is sick.

As the owner you become, in essence, the leader. This means the animal submits and only does what it is allowed. Because your pet is not a pack leader, it will not attempt to feed itself or gather what it needs to survive. It is relying on you for instruction and guidance, in the same way a child learns from its parents’ actions. Training an animal is much like teaching a baby to perform tasks, such as walking and talking.

As a pet owner, you will need to provide food, warmth, shelter, emotional support, financial support, patience and dedication. The same is true when caring for a baby. In the absence of this support, your pet or baby will have to suffer the consequences.

Pets become, for most, a member of the family. As such, they must be treated fairly, loved and cared for equally in comparison to their human counterparts. If you already have a child, and then become pregnant you may understand how the first child needs to feel involved and loved, and not crowded out by the new arrival. Pets behave in much the same way. The arrival of a new pet may signal disruptive or seemingly adolescent’ behaviour from your existing pet.

You must care for your pet and its environment in the same way you do a baby. In the absence of independence, your pet’s survival and quality of life are in your hands. The kinder you are to your pet, and the more you nurture it, the healthier and happier it will be. A pet may not be the same as a human baby, but the level of care and attention it requires is ultimately the same. You essentially become a parent to another life form, and bond with it as you would your own child.

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