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Doggone it, who’ll look after my pets when I’m gone?

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Your Life

Doggone it, who’ll look after my pets when I’m gone?

As we grow older we live with the expectation, or hope, that our children and grandchildren will outlive us, so we make provisions for our progeny in our wills. But what about our other faithful companions? I’m talking about pets. By Lucinda Dean.

According to the RSPCA, Australia has one of the highest pet ownership rates in the world – 69 per cent of Aussie households own pets with dogs being the most popular companion (48 per cent) followed by cats (33 per cent).

But who will look after your furry friends when you’re gone?

And should you leave instructions about what your dog likes to eat, which neighbourhoods she likes to sniff out or how she loves to roll over for a tummy tickle?

The Public Trustee Queensland is calling on all Queenslanders to consider making a will and to appoint someone to look after their pets.

“Talking about advance life planning can be confronting but it’s essential to plan ahead,” says Public Trustee Samay Zhouand.

“By making a will or giving someone enduring power of attorney to look after your affairs if you can’t, you can ensure your wishes will be taken into account.”

If you don’t have someone reliable to look after your pets when you’re gone, consider registering them with RSPCA’s Home Ever After program.

RSPCA philanthropy specialist Aileen McGregor-Lowndes said the program was the perfect option to help rehome pets if owners could no longer look after them.

“It’s really important to make a will and leave instructions about how you want your pet cared for – and by whom – so your wishes are taken into account.

“If you want the RSPCA to care for and rehome your pet, it’s a good idea to register your pet with us so we know about their needs, personality and preferences – everything from their favourite food to how they like to be cuddled,” she said.

“We’ll also need a copy of the instructions in your will to make sure your wishes are followed and to complete the registration of your pet.”

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