Congratulations on your new addition to the family! As you probably already know, a new furry friend (while totally cute) can be a lot of work. There’s a lot to think about and even more to do when you become a pet owner. Follow these tips to make your transition as a new pet mommy easier:
1. Get A Microchip
If your new puppy or kitten is not already microchipped, get one ASAP. Microchipping is an easy process that could save your pets’ life, should they run away. Don’t let just anyone do this, have a professional veterinarian install the chip to ensure a harmless and accurate procedure. And while you’re there… make sure your baby is up-to-date on all of their vaccinations! Your furball deserves a long and healthy life.
2. Pet Proof Your Home
Puppy / Kitten proof your home before your furry friend even walks through the door. Cover any electrical cords, secure furniture to avoid any accidents, and be mindful of any small items that they could choke on. Pets truly are like babies, only much more active, so do your best to keep all harmful items out of reach. Oh yea… if you do not already have a trash-can with a lid, invest in one! You would be amazed at what messes even the smallest breeds can make. Also, remove any houseplants that could be poisonous to your new family members, including aloe, sago palm, aluminum plant, and many more.
3. Breed Up
All breeds aren’t created equality. Research your new pets’ breed (or mix of breeds!) so you know what you’re really in for, and have a better understanding of how to take care of them. For example, huskies are naturally more energetic, while bulldogs tend to be more laid back. Bengal cats tend to suffer heart problems, while Persian cats may have respiratory issues. By knowing the tendencies of your fur baby’s breed, you can provide them the best possible care. If you rescued your new furry friend, and don’t know their breed, there are several DNA-testing kits available online.
4. Order in the Court (Home)
Pets need order! Start routines in your home as soon as possible. For dogs, this means a consistent walk, feeding and potty schedule; for cats, this means a feeding and potential play schedule. Dogs especially are creatures of habit, and they thrive on predictable plans. Set a clear line between playtime and bedtime, and any forbidden areas in your home. Placing boundaries early will save you a headache.
5. Let’s Talk
Socialization at a young age is key for preventing anxiety in older dogs and cats. If you adopted a younger pet, introduce them to everyone that you can! This is slightly easier for dog-owners on walks, but socialization is just as important to cats as it is for dogs. If you adopted an older pet who does not seem quite comfortable with strangers, also show them off to the world! It is never too late to get an animal accustomed to new people, or a new environment. Just know that it may take a little more time with older pets, but offer them comfort when around new people, and you will see growth in a few months’ time.
Being a new pet mom should be fun and fulfilling. Take your time to ease into parenthood and realize there are some things you’ll learn as a you go. Just focus on keeping a loving home, and you’ll do just fine.
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