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Do Not Get Your Pet From a Breeder
This is the most basic of first steps to being a good pet owner. There are so many dogs and cats who need homes that you should never even consider getting an animal from a breeder. Before you get your pet, spend a night perusing the photo galleries on the Sean Casey Animal Rescue website. If your heart doesn't completely break at all those perfect, furry faces, then maybe you are not ready to own a pet. If all you want is some trendy breed who will be a good accessory, it is time to really reassess what you are doing with your life and why you are such a terrible person. One bonus of getting a rescue dog is that they're frequently already housebroken, so, yay! Less work for you. On the other hand, if you think having a pet in any way means "less work" you should slowly back away from those photo galleries. It's a lot of work. Like, it's a fucking lot of work. But you're not afraid of a little work are you? Good. You'll be a solid pet owner.
Sean Casey Animal Rescue; nyanimalrescue.org