10 Tips on Being a Responsible Pet Owner


10 Tips to Be a Responsible Pet Owner

3 min read
May 15, 2023

Pets give us endless love and bring smiles and joy to our everyday lives.  They teach us to be kinder and more compassionate. They are our loyal friends and fearless protectors.  So it is worth remembering that pet ownership comes with great responsibility. After all, we are their guardians, leaders, and protectors, although it may not always feel that way.  

Although there is no single accepted definition of “responsible pet owner,” here are some tips to help you create the best possible environment for a happy, healthy pet.

1. Commit to your Pet

Recognize that you are making an emotional and financial commitment to your pet for his or her lifetime.  

Pet care costs money.  Therefore, you need to be aware that you are making a financial investment.  Just like people, pets get injuries and health issues that require doctor visits and treatment.

Buying pet insurance can help with medical costs.  MetLife1 offers several policies for dogs and cats.  Routine care coverage can help with everyday costs related to proactive health visits.

2. Evaluate your Lifestyle

If you are adding a dog to your family, think about your lifestyle, hobbies, habits, and schedule.  Research breeds or mixed breeds that best fit your lifestyle.

3. Expect to be Questioned

Whether you adopt a pet from a shelter, rescue organization, or a breeder, be prepared to fill out a detailed application and/or answer extensive questions about the type of home you can provide for a pet. Any reputable organization cares as much as you do about finding the ideal match between the pet and prospective home.

4. Plan Ahead

We all know that life can throw unexpected curveballs.  Responsible pet owners take this into account and carefully plan ahead so their pets will be cared for in the event that something happens to them. Taking steps like preparing a pet evacuation plan or having your pets microchipped may be a good start.

5. Provide the Necessities for a Healthy Pet

By taking a pet into your home, you are committing to provide safety, food, water, shelter, health care, and companionship.

Food, water, vaccinations, and protection from the elements are necessities. However, animals also have emotional needs.

Among these are the need for companionship and interaction.  Most pets, if given the choice, would prefer to be indoor pets, living side-by-side with their human companions.

Pets live more fulfilling lives when they are treated as family members rather than provided with outdoor shelter or relegated to the garage.

6. Know the Laws


Abide by state and local ordinances regarding pets.

This means:

  • Knowing the number of pets you can have on your property.
  • Making sure your pets are properly registered and licensed.
  • Knowing and obeying all leash laws.

7. Increase the Likelihood of Finding them Should they Run Away

No one wants to risk their beloved pet becoming lost. Thankfully, you can greatly increase the likelihood of your pet’s safe return by doing the following:

  • Make sure your pets have proper identification, including visible pet tags.
  • Have your pets microchipped.
  • Keep your pet’s information in all registration and microchip databases current.
  • List a cell phone number on your pet’s ID tag in the event that he becomes lost while you are away from home.

8. Develop a Relationship with your Veterinarian

Developing a relationship with your veterinarian as soon as you bring your new pet home. Your vet will get your pet started on a regular vaccination schedule and will recommend options for preventative parasite control treatments.
Regular check-ups and preventative care are important to keeping your pet functioning at his best.  

9. Provide Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Pets need regular exercise to stay in shape just like people do.  
Some statistics indicate that up to half the dogs in the United States are overweight. Regular exercise helps prevent pet obesity and provides necessary mental stimulation.  

Always remember to give your pet lots of love.  You are your pet’s favorite thing in the whole world.  So don’t forget the little things because to him, they are huge:.

10. Praise their Good Behavior

If they do something right- let them know!  Dogs love the sound of our voice, and a little positive reinforcement never hurt.


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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances. 

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.