Should We Get a Pet?
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– Dec 4, 2021(33 replies)
My 9 year child wants a pet. I do not want a pet. I am allergic to cats, dogs, and hay, among other things. I have an epi pen due to a number of allergies. Our house is small. I am also very stressed out from the crushing load of daily responsibilities of work, kid, meal planning, cooking, household chores, family finances, home and car maintenance, among other things. I told my child that I cannot add the responsibility of taking care of a pet. I also don’t want additional expense, as money is tight already. Child keeps begging and I don’t know how other families manage, but my kid is the only child in their class without a pet! From their perspective, all of their friends’ parents are fine with a cat, dog and many having 2-3 pets. Child understands my allergies and has requested a fish or a tortoise. How do I help the child understand that I do not have any reserve in me to add fish care to the list of chores. Of course, child says they will do the work but I know that it will be on me to maintain the tank, keep the water balanced, buy food and supplies. Child will help but it will be on me to turn fish care into a learning experience. I need to unload duties and not add more. Spouse does not want a pet either, so neither of us is willing to be the pet co-parent with the child. I am trying to offer free pet sitting/dog walking services to neighbors as a way for my child to have some animal time. I can take medication and deal with occasional pet encounters at someone else’s house. I am also considering buying a robotic dog but there is a very long waitlist for one. What should I do? I wish I could be more like other people who seem totally fine having a pet. Having a pet seems so normal but it feels daunting. Right now I am holding firm and just letting the child know “no pet” which is creating a lot of tense moments at home.Dec 4, 2021