What makes an animal a pet? For example, we know there are snakes that live in the wild and there are snakes kept as pets. There are certain characteristics
that differentiate a pet from an animal living in the wild. Below we have provided a compete list of pets.
Dependent on Humans to Live – A pet needs to be given food, water, and shelter by its owner. Being domesticated means the animal depends on its owner for all
of its care.
Lives in a Home – A pet lives in a home. Some pets such as parakeets and hamsters live in cages. Alternatively, dogs and cats wander freely around a home and
may have their own bed to sleep in.
Needs a Veterinarian’s Care – Pets need care from a veterinarian. The type of healthcare a pet needs depends on what type of pet it is. An iguana and a beagle
need completely different types of vet care!
Some Pets Can Be Trained – A dog can learn how to sit, stay, and heel in a course of obedience training. Parrots can be taught to talk, and some cats can be
taught by humans to do tricks.
Devoted to Its Owner – Pets are often devoted to their owners. They can establish a trust with their owner over time. In fact, some pets want to be with their
Provides Companionship – A pet is meant to be a companion to its owner.
Pets are Different from a Therapy Animal – A therapy animal receives specific training in order to provide support and care to its owner. As an example, some
therapy dogs are trained to recognize the signs of a seizure in their owner. The dog responds by trying to get the person to a safe place.
Alternatively, a pet is there strictly as a companion.
Different from a Farm Animal – A cow or a chicken living on a farm serves a specific purpose. A cow provides milk while a chicken lays eggs to be eaten or sold.
This makes farm animals a little different than traditional pets.
Can Be Common or Uncommon – When you think of a pet you probably picture a dog, a cat, a bird, a fish, or a gerbil. Those are common choices for pets.
Some people prefer less common or exotic pets such as snakes, iguanas, spiders, and ferrets. As long as an owner can offer appropriate care,
many animals can live happily as pets.
Cannot Survive in the Wild – One of the main characteristics separating pets from other animals is a pet can’t survive in the wild.
It has been domesticated or raised under a person’s care. So, releasing a pet snake into the wild doesn’t mean it will know how to find food or shelter.
In fact, it will likely die.