Thinking ahead about the animal's and family's needs is key, expert says,,,,
SUNDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- President Barack Obama and his family took their time selecting their new dog Bo, and that's something everyone should do when considering a new pet, says a University of Maryland School of Medicine expert.
"There are many health and safety concerns that should be addressed before bringing an animal into the home," Mary Beth Bollinger, an associate professor of pediatrics and interim chief of the pediatric pulmonology and allergy division, said in news release from the American Osteopathic Association.
"Individuals and families who are well-prepared will get the most enjoyment out of owning a pet," she said.
Bollinger suggested that anyone thinking about getting a pet:
Once a pet has joined the family, remember that annual checkups with a veterinarian reduce the risk of fleas, parasites and infections that can spread in your home.
The American Veterinary Medical Association offers more advice for people thinking about getting a pet.
-- Robert Preidt
SOURCE: American Osteopathic Association, news release, April 2009
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