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How To Be Smart In A World Of Dumb Pet Owners

If you ask people if they’re confident they can choose the best pet for them and their family, I think most people would say “Yes”.

I call BS.

On them AND myself.

choose the best pet

Based on the number of animals that end up in shelters every year –about 5 million, of which 3.5 million end up getting euthanized – I’d say we’re not as good as we think we are when we attempt to choose the best pet.

We all know there are countless things to think about when we choose a pet and I know the more responsible pet owners among us will do their best to consider as many of those factors as possible. As a result, our pets (and family) have a good chance to end up being happy and safe for many years. The reality is though, the majority of people will make less informed, more emotional decisions that will result in a sad ending – usually much more sad for the pet who had no control over the situation to begin with. choose the best pet Too many of us never know important things like the fact that a Border Collie is an instinctual herder. As a result, when we find it nipping at the heels of the neighborhood kids as they run around the neighborhood, we rebuke it instead of seeing the behavior for what it is – herding behavior. Don’t believe me? Google a video of a Border Collie herding sheep. See the similarities? Don’t blame the dog. Either way, even if you do your homework, it’s STILL a crapshoot a lot of the time trying to piece together the information you can get from various friends, relatives, and books. I swear I researched the heck out of my Huskies but they clearly weren’t a match for me at the time. I was frustrated and have beat myself up for years over it but I never really understood where I went wrong.

Thankfully, I was enlightened when I recently did a couple jobs for a site called RightPet.com.

choose the best pet - RightPet.com Although there’s little they or anyone else will ever be able to do with the chronically irresponsible people of the world, there IS at least new hope on the horizon for the rest of us who really do intend to choose the best pet. You see, Brett’s belief is that all animals have a personality – humans included obviously. Now I realize this isn’t exactly a new idea and that if you WERE one of the responsible ones, you probably actually learned a lot about your pet’s personality-type before you made your decision anyway. Good for you. That was half the battle and unfortunately not a step most people take.

However, up until now, that’s where most people had to stop.

I’ve seen the matching quizzes that will supposedly match you up with the perfect pet, but the only questions they ever seem to ask are ones that revolve around what you WANT in a pet –

– instead of what’s GOOD for you.

THAT’S what RightPet does.

And then some.

Not only do they keep an encyclopedic list of animals ranging from insects to livestock, they also provide awesome REAL WORLD owner reviews like this one that I wrote about my Siberian Husky. It’s not the only place you can find animal reviews I know, but I think Yelp has shown us how valuable people believe real-world advice to be – and I personally agree.

However, what I’m most excited about, as a lover of both animals and people, is what I got a sneak peek of coming soon from RightPet.

Pretty soon, along with a complete site redesign that looks great so far, they’ll be rolling out a new feature called RightPet Match. With RightPet match, prospective pet owners will have access to the most sophisticated people-pet matching tool available anywhere. Soon, they’ll be able to ask the site, for example, what dog breeds are right for them. At that point, they’ll be provided a questionnaire which asks about pretty specific things like lifestyle, preferences, and previous ownership experience.

Unique to RightPet Match though is a personality quiz.

That’s right – they’re not going to take YOUR word for what you THINK you want in a dog. In a whirl of complex algorithms and barking, they’re going to take your answers and compare them with scores they’ve researched for attributes for several hundred dog breeds.

In fact, they’ll even include factors like availability of the breed in the person’s geographical location. Very cool – and something that I suspect will prove to be pretty handy for many people.

It’s pretty impressive research they’re conducting and they hope to see some interesting patterns from it soon. (Incidentally, they’re using three Psychology professors and the Big 5 Model to crunch the data from several thousand members who have done reviews and the online personality quiz, to discover meaningful correlations between the types of animals that owners like or don’t like, based on their personality type.)

Uh huh. Considering this is a PET site and not a techie site, I was impressed. The awesome intuitiveness of RightPet Match will finish by delivering to the member, 3-5 potential breeds  – and of course they’ll throw in a list of breeders, shelters, and rescues where the breeds are available in the member’s area.

And to top it all off, they’re carefully curating products like food, toys, crates, and training equipment for each breed/species on the site – which users will conveniently be able to purchase through Amazon.

Talk about a full-service pet matching system.

I can’t help but think about how many pet lives this could eventually save.

choose the best pet

Thank you Brett and all the other good humans at RightPet.com for doing noble deeds for creatures who are victims through no fault of their own.

And now –

I’m taking off my blogger hat, my Realtor hat, and my business hat to appeal to the animal lover in you –

– to urge you to share this with everybody you know who may need to choose the best pet for their family someday.

We’ll ALL be better off for it in the end.

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