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School’s out, adopting a pet is in!

School’s out, adopting a pet is in!

The countdown to school holidays is on and SPCA Auckland says there’s never been a better time to adopt a pet.

Auckland SPCA CEO Andrea Midgen says the school holidays are one of the best times to adopt a pet because it gives the whole family, and the new pet the best opportunity to settle in and bond successfully.

“Learning to live with a new family in a new environment can be unsettling for animals. The school holidays offer families the chance to dedicate quality time to their new pet, show them the ropes and help them relax into their new home. It’s also a great time to teach kids about what’s involved in caring for an animal and ease into a routine of pet care responsibilities,” says Andrea.

While owning a pet is a fun source of entertainment for children, growing up with a pet can also teach kids important values about care, responsibility, companionship and empathy.

Flatbush resident and mum of two Tina Simons-Mills adopted three-legged cat Archie during the Easter school holidays and says the timing couldn’t have been better.

“Archie is a special little guy who needs a bit of extra attention since he only has three legs. Bringing him home during the school holidays meant my children Mikaia and Dylan had the chance to bond with Archie and learn that they needed to take extra care when picking him up,” says Tina.

“We’ve always has pets since the kids were born. Right now we have two cats and two dogs, all from the SPCA, and Mikaia and Dylan have to do their fair share of feeding and looking after the animals. It’s taught them to be gentle and to consider the needs of others.”

Here are Auckland SPCA’s top reasons why pets and families are a great combination:
1. Responsibility. From about five years years old, kids can take on feeding and cleaning tasks, which helps them learn to be responsible and understand the needs of other living creatures.
2. Empathy. Kids can often be boisterous and loud when trying to play with animals. If the pet doesn't like what they're doing, their reaction helps kids learn to be sensitive to the needs and feelings of other living things.
3. Exercise. It’s easy to hibernate in winter, but a dog will make sure the whole family gets outdoors and stays active by taking the dog for a walk every day.
4. Play. A pet can provide hours of fun for kids. While cats won’t appreciate a walk quite like a dog, they love playing by chasing cat toys and also enjoy a snuggle on the couch.
5. Love. Pets are indiscriminate about sharing the love and can help boost a child’s self-esteem because you can always count on the love of a family pet.

When you adopt a pet from SPCA Auckland, you not only have the satisfaction of knowing you’ve saved a life, but you also get a pet that has been vet checked, desexed, temperament assessed, vaccinated, microchipped and matched to suit your family. Plus, the SPCA can also provide advice on how to care for your new pet and how to settle it into your home.

“Before you visit the shelter to meet your new furry friend, the most important thing to remember is that adopting any animal should always be taken seriously. You are changing a life and need to commit to rehoming an animal for the rest of their natural life,” says Andrea.

“Make sure you consider the financial cost, healthcare responsibilities, the time you’ll need to dedicate to the pet, and whether your home is suitable for a pet. If can manage all of that, we’d love to see you at the Auckland SPCA shelter and help you find your perfect pet.”

You can view animals for adoption at or at the SPCA Auckland Animal Village, 50 Westney Rd, Mangere, 10.00am – 4.00pm every day. Visit for more information on adopting a pet.


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