Giving pets as presents may not be the best idea, what to consider before you commit

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Pets are a popular gift for the holiday season but there are a lot of things to consider before surprising your loved one with a new furry friend.

Mike Lawson from the Virginia Beach SPCA sat down with News 3's Kristen Crowley to talk about the top things people need to think about before taking the big step and adding a new member to the family.

First, make sure that person really wants a pet. Have they expressed prolonged interest? Have they made arrangements to have a pet in the home?

The next step is to decide on the right pet for you and your loved ones. Older dogs are easier to care for and require less work than a puppy, cats are a great fit for people who want an independent animal and small pets are better for smaller homes. The experts at your local shelter can help advise you on what type of pet would be a perfect fit, this also helps animals find the right homes so they do not end up back in the shelter.

Last but not least,  get all parties involved in the entire process. If you want to adopt a pet you will need the family to make a group visit to the shelter together. Discuss who will be taking care of the pet and understand the long term care commitment and cost involved in having any kind of pet before you bring them home.

If you are planning on adopting this holiday season Priority Automotive is paying half of the adoption fees at three of our local shelters. The Virginia Beach SPCA, the Norfolk SPCA and Chesapeake Animal Services.