Adopting a pet


Looking to adopt a pet? Find out all the details to help you find your new best friend.

kids playing with dog

Considerations for pet adoption

Adopting a pet is a great thing to do. There are thousands of homeless animals that are looking for a new forever home. Adopting a pet not only saves the life of the adopted animal, but creates a new space in shelters for dogs and other pets looking for a warm home.

Before you adopt a pet it's important to recognise what type of pet you want and what suits your lifestyle. Pets can be around for a long time - usually 10 to 15 years - so it's important to consider this carefully.

Talk to your family and friends to help decide what the best option is for you. Consider your needs and those of your new best friend. Some of the points to consider and discuss with others are cost, space needed, time dedicated to a pet and your lifestyle.

How much does it cost to adopt a dog or cat?

The cost of adoption depends on the type of animal you're adopting, the breed and their age. Adoption fees typically include de-sexing, initial vaccinations and microchipping. RACQ Insurance has partnered with AWLQ and provides 3 months free Pet Insurance* for eligible cats and dogs.

Pets also have ongoing costs that you will need to consider before you adopt. Make sure you budget for food, training, toys, activities and grooming.

There will likely be unforeseen medical expenses too, so be sure that you keep this in mind when weighing up your decision.

Whether you adopt a pet or purchase one, pet insurance will help protect you against unexpected vet bills and help keep your dog or cat healthy.

Space and lifestyle with a pet

The cost of pet ownership goes beyond financials. You need to consider whether your home is animal friendly and if there is enough space for your pet to roam and exercise.

If you have a growing family, ensure your home will be safe for your children and pet. Some animals can be prone to biting and pose a risk to children. Children's toys can be choking hazards for animals. If you do have children and add a pet into the family, it is important to supervise their interaction to ensure all members of your family are kept safe and happy.

Time to care for a pet

Some pets, like dogs, will need a lot of exercise and may demand a lot of your time. Dogs need exercise just as humans do, for their health and wellbeing. Some breeds of dogs are very active and will benefit from more exercise than others. If a dog is not taken for sufficient walks and fresh air, it can lead to aggression, depression or anxiety in your dog. Exercise can be good for dogs and their human family.

Adopted pets and existing pets

If you have an existing pet and are considering adopting another one, it is important to bring them along when meeting other animals. This way you can introduce them and watch them together before taking the new family member home. Pets have personalities and temperaments, just like we do, so checking your pets will get along is helpful to build a healthy living environment!

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Things to note

The information in this article has been prepared for general information purposes only and is not intended as legal advice or specific advice to any particular person. Any advice contained in the document is general advice, not intended as legal advice or professional advice and does not take into account any person’s particular circumstances. Before acting on anything based on this advice you should consider its appropriateness to you, having regard to your objectives and needs.