Cats and Dogs
Article Rating
1 звезда2 звезды3 звезды4 звезды5 звезд

Is dog Adoption regret normal?

Pet Regret is More Common than You Think. Here’s How to Handle It

dog surrounded by fluff like they just tore up a pillow

Sometimes you have an epiphany – an instantaneous realization of what you want or what went wrong.

On other occasions, it’s not instantaneous. It’s a slow-dawning realization that takes weeks or months to come to terms with.

The latter is how pet regret sunk in for me. Regretting my pets wasn’t instant. It took years to realize how much they held me back and impacted my life.

Others may realize how large of an undertaking pet ownership is when they first bring the puppy home.

I Love My Pets

Before the brigade of pet lovers starts crucifying me– hear me out.

I have three cats and two dogs, and I love the little buggers. I would never dump them at an animal shelter or give them less than the care they deserve.

They are a part of the family. They are my responsibility, and I will do my best to ensure each one has the longest, most comfortable life possible.

Pet Regret is Real

However, despite how much I love them, it’s essential to consider how pets impact your life.

Perhaps my story will help someone else realize they aren’t ready for pet ownership, while it might make others on the fence decide they’re up for the challenge.

Getting a pet should never be an impulse decision. It should be well-researched and enthusiastic.

Anyone considering pet ownership must know all sides of the story – the joys and limitations.

Why Do I Regret Getting Pets?

My life would be different if I didn’t have pets. I could have taken that job in California or rented while living in Savannah and Pennslyvania.

I could quit my job on a whim and travel the world or even do something simple, like taking a spontaneous vacation.

Unfortunately, these things aren’t feasible with my pets.

I Regret Getting a Dog

In my specific case, the dogs are a more considerable regret than the cats.

Cats are easy. I could take weekend trips whenever I wanted when I just had them. They’re fine for a few days, with plenty of food and water scattered throughout the house.

Dogs are different. You can’t leave them alone and go on an overnight trip, much less an entire weekend getaway.

I have to hire a pet sitter if I want to get away. I generally use Rover to find someone who loves dogs and will take care of my babies the way I would. I pay a ton of money to have someone take care of my little guys, which makes it a great side hustle for the sitters, but a massive expense for the owners.

Outside of the inability to travel (which cats limit as well), there are three main reasons I regret owning a dog more than my cats: the expense, the lack of mobility, and all the time and energy that dog ownership requires.

Dogs Are Expensive

Dogs are crazy expensive. Their food costs about fifty dollars every two weeks, not including any special treats or bones.

You must take your dogs to the veterinarian at the first sign of a problem to ensure their overall wellness. One of mine had an ear infection, and the other developed a weird skin rash. These little problems constantly arise, and I’m always paying vet bills.

I also pay for their flea and tick prevention, a monthly pill that helps prevent parasites, and yearly shots.

In addition, I have to buy them plenty of chew toys and bones, so they don’t destroy my stuff. When Coyote was a puppy, he ate my brand-new couch on the day it was delivered, costing me hundreds of dollars in repairs. Energetic breeds will do things like that, so it’s vital to know what you’re getting into before adopting.

Time and Energy

Dogs and Cats require your time and energy. I don’t have enough of it for them. I’d love to take them to the dog park (if we had one nearby) or hire a dog walker (if I had the extra income), but I can’t do those things.

Although they are incredibly well-behaved (now), Coyote is also a high-energy breed and thus very playful. He wants to go with us everywhere and play all the time. When he was a puppy, he destroyed stuff if he didn’t have a positive outlet for his energy.

I feel awful that I can’t provide him with all the time and attention he needs, but I do my best. He’s a rescue; I found him wandering by himself in a California desert, abandoned. Having a loving home where he’s cared for, even if he doesn’t get all of the attention he would like, was a much better option than sending him to a shelter.

Coyote is an excellent dog who gets along well with all the cats and everyone he meets, and I’m glad I saved him from likely starvation in the desert or a short life in the pound.

And there’s also all the poop. I’d much rather clean a little box every day than carry little baggies of dog poop with me on walks or clean up dog poop from my yard every day. That part about dog ownership sucks.

Lack of Mobility

The most considerable challenge with dog ownership is the limitations on housing.

Many landlords refuse to rent to someone with a dog weighing over fifty pounds. I regret getting my dogs because having them has seriously limited my mobility. I can’t look for better opportunities elsewhere because moving is prohibitively expensive. I’d have to sell a house and buy a new home because renting is out of the question in many places.

In 2019, I got the most amazing job offer of my life. It was for nearly 120K per year and back in Long Beach, CA.

I turned the job down.

My official reason is that moving back to California won’t help me on the path to financial freedom, and while that’s technically true, it’s only true because I have so many pets.

Can’t Move, Too Many Pets

The real reason I turned the job down is because of all of my pets. Moving back to California with them would be incredibly expensive. Finding a home where we could all live in the area would cost me more than the yearly raise.

I doubt I’d be able to afford it at all.

If I didn’t have them, I would have taken the job. I could have easily found a one-bedroom apartment or roommate situation for around 1000 a month in the area.

After my housing costs, I’d still be taking home over 100K a year. That would be worth it for a few years, and it would help me on my journey to financial independence.

I Regret Getting a Cat

I don’t regret my cats as much as I regret my dogs. They are much more manageable.

When I was just a crazy cat lady, I could take weekend trips and not have to worry about whether they’d destroy the house when I was gone. Sure, they’d get mad and throw a few things off the counter. But overall, they can take care of themselves for a few days.

However, I do regret getting four cats.

Although I lost one last year, three is still too much for most rentals. If I just had two cats like a normal person, I’d be able to do most of the things I want to do. I could have found a cheap one-bedroom rental in California that accepts cats. I could move them cross-country without having to stop every two hours.

But still, even with just one cat, my dreams of traveling the world would have to be put on hold. Cats don’t travel well, and there are many rules and restrictions to bringing domestic animals across international borders. And with three cats, it’s a pipe dream.

What Should You Do if You Regret Getting Pets?

If any of this story resonates with you, you have options. Pet regret is real, but there are things you can do to manage it.

Suck it Up

The first option is to suck it up and deal. You adopted the pet, it’s part of your family, and you need to figure it out.

Many far reaches of the internet will stubbornly advise you to do just this. Although some of us do it and find ways to be happy, we need to acknowledge it’s not realistic or appropriate for everyone.

Make Adjustments

Another option is to find ways to make it work. Sometimes we regret getting a pet because we’re overwhelmed and not getting the help we expected from a partner.

If there are people in your household who wanted the pet but aren’t helping, make adjustments to your workload and force them to help.

Have older kids walk and feed the dog. Make your partner responsible for vet visits. Adjust the workload in your home, so it’s not all on you.


Sometimes pet regret situations arise from lack of training. Dogs can be difficult. If they think they can get away with something, they will.

If you regret your dog because it’s behaving poorly, consider taking it to training classes before giving up on it. Your furry friend may just need a little guidance to turn into the perfect companion.

Pay for Help

If you’re overwhelmed, and nobody can help, it’s okay to pay for it. Hire a dog walker to give your dog walks a few times per week, or take them to doggy daycare while you’re at work.

Outsourcing some of the dog’s care may make dog ownership easier and more manageable if you can afford it.


If all else fails and you find yourself unable to give your pet the care it deserves, it’s perfectly acceptable to rehome it.

Many internet users will give you hate for re-homing, but often it’s the best option for both you and the pet.

Be sure to do the proper research before re-homing a pet. Make sure you give your pet to good owners, where it will be happy, healthy, and well taken care of. Here are some great tips for re-homing if that’s what you need to do.

Please avoid dropping your pet off at a shelter. Most shelters are so overrun with homeless animals that most only get a few days to get adopted -and get euthanized if they don’t. If you can’t find a good new home, at least find a no-kill shelter .

How to Avoid Pet Regret

Sometimes pet regret is unavoidable. Life changes, jobs change, families change, and commitments we once made are no longer feasible.

However, there are ways to mitigate pet regret to a great extent.


Before getting any pet, you should research their needs. Consider their life spans, common ailments, food needs, and energy levels.

Make sure you know exactly what to expect with a specific animal and breed before making a purchase.

Choose an Appropriate Breed

Huskies are the cutest things. They’re furry with their blue or multicolored eyes and often make people swoon. They’re gorgeous animals.

However, huskies are also very high-energy dogs. They love being outside, and they love being active. They get bored quickly and often turn to destructive behaviors to alleviate their boredom.

Huskies don’t do well as inside dogs. If you live in a small apartment, choose a breed suited for apartment life, or get a cat. Don’t get a dog that’s not suited to your lifestyle just because it’s cute.

Ensure Stability

Although life has a funny way of throwing curve balls during the best of times, there are some times we should just know that getting a pet is a bad idea.

Put off getting a companion if you’re about to graduate college and don’t know where you might move after. Consider getting a small cat if you’re not yet stable in your career and have to hop from job to job.

Think about whether you will move soon and whether your companion can come with you before diving in and getting one.

What Am I Going to Do?

As I said above, I will continue living my life and taking care of my five remaining babies to the best of my ability. I’m more than capable of caring for them, and they enhance my life in many immeasurable ways. I’m sacrificing my freedom for them, and I’m more than okay with that choice.

I didn’t write this because I’m going to give them up or change anything I’m doing. I’m writing it to acknowledge my feelings.

Hopefully, this will show others in similar situation they aren’t alone.

People don’t talk about these regrets or acknowledge that having pets can hold them back , but these conversations are essential. They can prevent people from getting pets who probably shouldn’t have them while offering others a realistic idea of what to expect if they choose to adopt.

So, if you regret getting pets, it’s not the end of the world. It doesn’t make you a bad person.

In fact, it’s best to acknowledge your feelings so you can decide what the best way to move forward is for both you and them.

about Melanie

Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.

Over a third of dog owners feel regret or doubt after bringing home a new puppy

A quarter feel a puppy is harder than newborn baby

Coronation concert LIVE

More than half (56 percent) were surprised by how hard it was to look after a young pup, while 71 percent said bringing home a puppy was like having a newborn baby.

Related articles

The damage the pet did to their house (43 percent), and its behaviour (42 percent), were cited as top reasons for “puppy blues” – a term coined to describe the feelings of regret, resentment, and doubt some experience after bringing home a new pooch.

It also emerged that although 86 percent love their pet unconditionally, despite the hard times, a staggering 91 percent feel they would have benefitted from expert advice on how to cope.

The research was commissioned by pet insurance brand ManyPets, which has teamed up with vet Dr Scott Miller to host free one-to-one sessions, to help owners acclimatise to their new role as puppy parents.

Oke Eleazu, UK CEO of the brand, said: “While bringing home a new puppy is a uniquely fulfilling experience, the lack of sleep, mess, and feelings of regret can become overwhelming.

“As the research shows, 37 percent of dog parents experienced some form of puppy blues. We want to help pet parents feel they are not alone.

“This is why we’re excited to have appointed veterinarian, Dr Scott Miller, as our first ever Doggy Doula, to provide the emotional and informational support needed to help new dog owners adapt to life with their puppy.”

The research also found 75 percent of those with puppy blues felt ashamed by their emotions towards their pup – after almost half (46 percent) even considered giving up or rehousing their pup many times.

TV vet Dr Scott Miller is here to help

TV veterinarian, Dr Scott Miller, is offering free sessions to help puppy owners through hard times (Image: ManyPets/PinPep)

For some, having a puppy also created tension within the household due to the additional chores – with 52 percent quarrelling more about their puppy than the washing-up.

And 52 percent said getting a puppy caused arguments between themselves and their partner or family.

Despite feelings of regret and upset after getting a puppy, thankfully those emotions tended to subside quickly.

Of those who had puppy blues, 96 percent said those feelings either totally or somewhat disappeared over time.

And for 28 percent, the more negative emotions typically went away in less than a week.

Dr Scott Miller, who has appeared on ITV’s This Morning, said: “It’s normal to doubt yourself, and no matter how much prep you do for the first day, the responsibility of taking care of a little one can still be a real shock.

“Even though you might feel embarrassed or scared to admit how hard you’re finding it, a great starting point is to seek out support when you’re struggling.

“As Doggy Doula, I’m here to lend a non-judgemental ear to your puppy problems.”

Related articles

  • Aldi launches huge January baby sale with prices from £1.10 up
  • Kate Middleton birthday treat in London is only available to 4 royals
  • Prince George and Princess Charlotte have adorable nickname for Louis
  • Prince Harry seen ‘lapping up attention’ after Stephen Colbert show
  • Queen Elizabeth II had hidden code that was ‘worrying’ for others
Link to main publication