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anniereborn's avatar

Is there an age at which you would no longer get a pet?

Asked by anniereborn (5358 points ) March 19th, 2014

My youngest cat will turn 20 when I am 60. I sure hope to live that long.
But…..at that point I don’t think I would get another young pet. I mean if it lives to be 20, I will be 80!
At 60, I think I would only adopt a middle age pet, unless I had someone I KNEW would take over if I died.
Any of you out there think of this stuff too?

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25 Answers

johnpowell's avatar

I think of kinda the same stuff. I would love to have another cat but I fear I couldn’t pay the vet bills if anything happened. My sisters cat had to have a c-section and that was well over 1K. I can’t swing that (she was told it had been fixed when she got the cat).

For now I will stick with goldfish.

GloPro's avatar

Just don’t get a parrot. They live forever and nobody wants to inherit a bird.

downtide's avatar

My age would affect the age of the pet I would get, but it wouldn’t stop me getting one. I intend to get another dog when I retire, for sure.

ragingloli's avatar

Depends on the pet.
A caged pet would starve to death after I die.
A cat however would not care one bit and a doge would eat me and then start to loudly bark when it gets hungry.

jca's avatar

I was thinking of this recently as my mom is in her early 70’s and has an old dog. I was thinking how the cats I have at present will probably live until I am in my early 60’s. I would get another cat if I were her age, but that’s me, I’m a cat person.

I am not sure if she would get another dog. It’s sad because she loves dogs. It will become increasingly hard for her to walk it, as it will become increasingly hard for her to walk at all.

livelaughlove21's avatar

I don’t think I’d want to deal with a kitten or a puppy after a certain age, so I’d probably get an older animal that will kick the bucket before I probably will. Then again, we don’t know when we’re going to die.

I think I’m done with cats after Chloe goes. I love her, but she’s annoying. And dogs don’t typically live 20 years.

rojo's avatar

My old dog is going to be 14 on Cinco de Mayo. I hope he has a couple of more years in him. He is still active but is all skin and bone even though he eats well. He has also developed what appears to be a great thirst, emptying his water bowl several times a day, drinking out of the toilet whenever someone leaves the lid up and from the pool every time he goes outside.

My wife and I have decided that once he goes we are not getting another dog. Not saying we won’t get another at some point, just that we are close to retirement, looking to travel as much as possible and don’t want to have to worry about finding someone (read daughter or neighbors) to take care of an animal while we are gone for extended lengths of time.

GloPro's avatar

@rojo Have you had him checked for diabetes? Skin and bones, developed insatiable thirst… It’s easy blood work if you’re trying to keep him going a couple more years.

rojo's avatar

We have considered it and he is set for a vet check for shots, etc some time within the next month or so. Will have him checked then.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I wouldn’t worry about my age, as long as I have someone that can keep tabs on me. I would hate to kick the bucket and have the poor pet neglected for days before someone located my dead body.

marinelife's avatar

I have been thinking about adopting older animals from now on.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Sure, but you know people seem to live longer with pets, it’s a reason to get up in the morning, etc… So just talk to a family member or friend about it, so you can keep loving them as long as you can.

@Adirondackwannabe Or eat ya!

janbb's avatar

I am in my early 60s and Frodo is a year old. I would probably adopt an older dog next if F lives a normal lifespan.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@KNOWITALL You just made Gerald’s Game go thru my head.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe THAT BOOK SCARED ME TO DEATH!

You know I keep thinking we need more scary movies with housepets, like Pet Cemetar and Cujo. We spend billions on pets in the US, and how about pet cruises for those of us who don’t want to leave them at home on vacation but want to do thing’s like that?

I could be a millionaire if I just had the time…lol

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

Years ago, a rescue group opened my eyes and made me aware of this question. The group was trying to place a cat whose elderly “Mom” had passed away. When the decedent’s family members cleaned-out her house, they just put the cat outside, locked up, and left. This was an indoor cat who had always been loved, fed, and cared for. Not only did the cat lose its beloved human companion, it suddenly found itself outdoors and homeless.

Certainly, the lady had believed that her family would do right by her and find a good home for her animal companion.

Having said all that, I wouldn’t get another cat or dog after I reach age 65. A dog can live for 14–15 years, and it’s not uncommon for a cat to live for 20 years. I wouldn’t want my animals to outlive me. The only exception I’d make would be for an older, hard-to-place animal, in need of a home but not expected to live for very long.

anniereborn's avatar

@SadieMartinPaul Yes, sadly that scenario happens quite often. The “lucky” ones end up in a shelter confused and sad.Usually they are older animals and live out their days at a shelter because most won’t want them. Often they are split up from their “siblings” they had when their human was alive.
I would only do it if I had family already agreeing to taking mine. Otherwise I will have some kind of small pet that doesn’t live long. Or maybe be a foster home.

KNOWITALL's avatar

You guys are all freaking me out. Does anyone want to be a Godparent to my birds? Just in case?

anniereborn's avatar

@KNOWITALL I think everyone should ‘freak out’ about this. Well, okay just give it some VERY heavy thought. It’s real important.

anniereborn's avatar

My partner and I have 3 cats. I am in my mid 40s and he is in his mid 30s. And it still worries me quite a bit. We don’t have anyone designated specifically to take over if needed. But, I have talked to my sister and she has assured me that she would make sure they were taken care of. And, I know that she would.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@anniereborn I’m going to live FOREVERRRRRRRR…..lol

Coloma's avatar

Well..I am 54 and my 2 current cats are turning 5 and 8 this year. They could easily live 10+ more years so that will make me at least 64–65 when they go. I would get another cat in my 60’s yes. Now, many of you know I had to re-home my beloved goose “Marwyn” one year ago today infact :-( because I could no longer afford my country property.

He turns 16 this July and most likely, will live into his 20’s and I plan to be in his life until the end, barring disaster.
I don’t consider life worth living without a cat, quite frankly.
No more dogs for me, too much work, cats rule.
One thing I have really observed in recent months is the uncanny number of middle aged guys and their goofy little dogs.

Some weird phenomenon it seems, all these older guys with their little scruffy rat terriers and poodley things. No thanks, scratch off more dating options, no small yappy dogs! lol

hearkat's avatar

I just saw a FB post where an older couple had adopted a seven-year-old beagle that had been in the shelter for years!

rojo's avatar

My MIL is 89 this year. She has a cat that is probably somewhere close to 10. He is both the darling and the bane of her existence. She frets so much about what will happen to him when she dies. We have told her not to worry, that either we or her eldest son who loves cats will take him but still it worries her constantly. But, even with the worry, she still adores him and he keeps her entertained and loved.

GloPro's avatar

My sister seeks out the old or handicapped dogs at the shelters. She’s had some doddering old dogs, that’s for sure. She goes through them pretty fast since there isn’t much fuel left in the tank when she gets them.

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