(WKBN) – As Christmas approaches, some people may be wondering what to give a loved one as a gift. Well, there’s one idea you may want to consider before handing it out.

“Pets as gifts are, in general, not a good idea,” said Mary Louk, board president for Animal Charity.

Oftentimes, people give pets as gifts and those pets end up at a shelter. 

Louk said they see an increase of animals coming in around the holiday season every year.

“People are off for the holidays, and they’re home, and once they go back to work, they realize, ‘Oh this is a lot more than what we realized.’ You know, puppies and kittens, if you’re getting young animals, they take a lot of training,”

She did say if you are set on giving a pet as a gift, there are some steps you should take first.

“You need to think about it, you need to, you know, talk to all of the family members. Everyone that lives in your house should be a part of this decision to bring an animal into your home. It’s at least a 10- to 15-year commitment,” Louk said 

Louk also says if you are planning to get a pet around the holidays, consider getting one from a shelter as they will fill up around this time.