SHIRE of Mundaring residents considering buying a new pet for Christmas are urged to consider the true costs and commitment required.
Shire President David Lavell said the purchase cost of a puppy, kitten or pony was small in comparison to the costs over the lifetime of the animal.
"We know that it is exciting for a family, especially children, to receive a new pet," he said.
"But being a responsible owner means you need to buy food, bedding, toys and collars. You also need to vaccinate, microchip and sterilise your new puppy or kitten.
"In particular for dogs and horses you need adequate fencing, as it is your responsibility to make sure your new pet is properly confined to your property."
Cr Lavell said the welfare of animals was a top priority for Shire rangers.
"We don't want to see pets ending up in our pound, and it can be avoided by having good fencing and ensuring your dog or cat are microchipped and registered," he said.
"Responsible pet ownership starts well before you purchase a pet, so we are urging people to make sure they are prepared to look after the pet for the long-term, not just the Christmas school holiday period.
"We also remind all pet owners to ensure pets have adequate clean drinking water as the weather heats up and avoid leaving pets in hot cars. As we enter another bush fire season it is important that your Survival Plan also includes the actions you will take to best protect your pets if a bushfire threatens your property."