Becoming a pet parent is exciting. Not only can pets make loyal companions and keep you company at home, but they are also great travel buddies. It may be overwhelming thinking about everything you have to do to prepare to welcome a new pet into your home.
Adopting your first pet doesn’t have to be a scary experience. In fact, animals are wonderful companions for most people, especially those who suffer from depression or are recovering from substance abuse. Setting aside playtime, teaching them tricks, or just sitting around and taking a cozy afternoon nap can make you feel so much better. And, in turn, your pet will expect you to care for them. It’s a lot of responsibility, but it’s also very rewarding.
Here are four tips to keep in mind before you bring your new puppy or kitten home.
Choose the right breed
If you’re a cat person, you don’t have to worry about what kind of breed you bring home. However, if you have allergies, you should consider getting a shorthaired cat, so you don’t have to deal with runny noses and sneezing.
If you’re more of a dog person, picking a breed that will match your lifestyle can be tricky. There are so many to choose from, so how do you decide on which kind of pup you want? The important things to consider are friendliness, especially if you have kids, fitness requirements and energy levels. If you have a big backyard, you are going to be fine with getting a bigger dog, such as a golden retriever. If you live in an apartment or condo with a little backyard or no backyard at all, you should consider getting a smaller, less energetic pup like a French bulldog.
Make time for pet proofing
In order to make sure your new pet is safe in your home, you have to do a little pet-proofing. It takes a little bit of preparation, but this will make sure your new kitten or puppy doesn’t get injured exploring around your home. Before you bring your new pet home, make sure you buy all the supplies they’ll need such as collars, tags, bedding, dog gates, litter boxes, food and water bowls.
Once you’re done buying all the supplies on your list, you can start pet proofing. Be sure to tape any electrical cords to baseboards and put away any cleaning supplies that are toxic to animals. There are also certain plants that are dangerous to dogs, so be sure to get rid of those as well. Remove any vases or other breakables around your home that are out in the open and put them in a safe spot. Set up any gates or crates for your new pet and be sure to plug up any areas in your cabinets that they may want to climb in.
Ensure their comfort
You want your new cat or dog to feel at home, don’t you? If you’re adopting your pet from a rescue shelter, they may be fearful or nervous, and that’s completely normal. It’s best not to rush them into anything until they feel comfortable.
When you bring them home, your house may seem scary at first, but they’ll come around. Remember not to crowd them, and give them as much space as they need. If they hide under a couch or bed, don’t force them to come out, let them come out on their own. A good way to help them feel comfortable in their new space is to buy them a new toy or comfortable bed that can help them relax. This will reduce their anxiety and provide them with a little distraction.
Bond with them
Remember to spend time with your new pet. Bond with them and show them all the love and attention they deserve. Bonding can include one-on-one time, whether it’s training or playing outside in the park. If you have a new puppy, make sure you stay consistent with training. Communication is important when they’re young, and they need training every day. Learn your pet’s likes and dislikes and try to never lose your temper.