Do minimalists have pets? If they’re animal lovers, of course! But how does one go about owning a pet while maintaining a simple lifestyle.
A dog or cat can come with many expenses. But some of those expenses are unnecessary and need to be decluttered.
Particularly in western culture, people tend to pamper their four-legged creatures too much. Dog, cats, hamsters, and other pets aren’t humans.
When you just provide an animal the basics they need, they’ll be generally happy. Minimalism with pets is possible. Here are 5 essentials to own to make your pet happy.
1. Food and water
Other than you, perhaps nothing is more essential to a pet than food and water. Be sure to only feed them meals that are specifically designed for them.
In particular with dogs, people often feed them human food. Your pet will usually eat anything you hand them, which is why you need to be wise about giving them proper animal food.
Water is simple. You just need to fill a small bowl with water and put it down for them to drink. As a side note, milk is actually not the best beverage for cats. They should drink water too.
This essential will depend on whether your pet is going to be in the house or outside. If you plan on keeping them outside, it’s important to give them shelter from the weather.
My family used an igloo doghouse for one of my pets. They could go in it to get away from the sun or the rain.
Though for some minimalists, they might see the item as too big to have. Another option is to build the doghouse yourself.
It can be a great way to get off your device for a little while and learn something new.
Different breeds of different animals have their own conditions they’re prone to getting. Discuss with your vet about what you might have to expect to buy for your pet at some point.
Ask questions about how you can prevent these conditions to limit how much you have to spend on medicine.
4. Flea protection
Unfortunately, pets generally will attract fleas, ticks, and other bugs if they spend most of their time outside. It’s necessary for you to own some kind of bug protection.
Just as you don’t like itching and scratching on your body, they don’t either. Give them the joy of getting some relief from the bugs.
5. Grooming products
There are products that are specifically designed for cleaning your pets. Human shampoos can have a harmful effect on your pets.
Be sure to purchase animal shampoo for proper cleaning. Another good essential to have is a brush to comb their hair.
5 things minimalists pet owners don’t need to get
As I mentioned earlier, western culture tends to pamper their pets in ways they really don’t need.
Here are just a few examples of what you don’t have to own to make your animal friend happy.
1. Pet clothes
I have no idea when exactly it became trendy to put clothes on your pet. Perhaps when Paris Hilton did it in the early 2000’s.
But there’s a reason why your pet has fur. They do not need clothes to keep them warm. They don’t need them to look good either.
A good washing and cleaning of that fur will bring out their natural style they were born with.
2. Bedazzled collar
This item is another one to file in the “Why does a pet need this?” folder. The purpose of a collar is to be an identification that the pet is yours.
A simple dog tag with their name on it will do the trick. But nonetheless, if fashionable items for your pet really brings joy to you, by all means, bedazzle away.
3. Fancy bed
When I think back to when I had a dog, I used to try to get him to sleep on cushions. But he always seemed more comfortable just lying on the floor.
Dogs are naturally used to lying on the ground. Humans certainly didn’t make plush beds for them back when they were domesticated.
You have to ask yourself is it really necessary to your happiness, and your pet’s happiness, to get a fancy bed for them.
Your pet may just be fine with sleeping on a rug or sleeping outside on the grass.
4. Lots of toys
Getting a toy for a pet is one thing. But just like kids don’t need 50 different toys, neither do your pets. In fact, you may not even need to get a pet toy that makes noise when you squeeze it or something.
Something as simple as a tennis ball can work for a dog and even a cat. You can even play games with their treats.
Make them do tricks to earn the reward of the treat you have in your hand. You can also just run around and play with them without a toy.
5. Doggy weights
Exercise is important for animals, but they don’t have to be bulked up like humans. Some pet owners like to purchase weights to place on their dogs while they’re walking.
While that’s fine if you want to do that, all the exercise they really need is just a good run. You can take them out for a jog or throw around a tennis ball to play fetch.
Simple living is about having more of what matters to you in your life. For some, animals don’t matter that much to them, so they don’t need to have one.
But if you’re someone who really likes animals, then you should have one. And you can have one without sacrificing having a peaceful organized space.