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Taking home a new pet can be an exciting time. Once, everyone, in the house has decided what pet they want you then need to start thinking about areas such as who’s responsible for changing the litter, who’s going to bathe them, who’s going to take them for walks, who’s going to take them to the vet, who’s going to feed them? You also then need to start preparing your home to make it suitable for the new family members.
Have a look below at some of the ways you can achieve this:
Proof Your Home
Make your home pet-proof before they arrive at your home. Make sure you take care of things such as keeping your trash can tightly shut, removing any hazardous items like ornaments and keeping unsafe domestic substances out of reach. You should remove items like cleaning solutions, bleach, toys with small parts, lawn care products. medications, sugar-free gum, chocolate and electric cables. Anything that you think could potentially cause harm should be dealt with.
Create A Personal Space
It’s important for any animal to have a dedicated zone that is just for them. They need somewhere where they can feel safe and get away from the commotion when it gets too much. Just like you can get overwhelmed pets can too.
Think about where you are going set up space for your new pet and make sure it’s appropriate for them. You should then research items such as dog beds. playpens, cages and fish tanks in order to create the perfect space for them to reside.
You should be asking yourself, will your new cat or dog be restricted to one area your home, or will they be able to roam freely? Do you have an ideal location for a birdcage to sit that away from radiators and other hazards? Etc. It’s also extremely important to think about setting up your pet’s stable, kennel*, or basket before you bring him home. This way you can introduce them to their safe zone straight away.
Provide Lots Of Stimulation
You should provide lots of toys for your new pet. It’s crucial that you keep them entertained. Dog’s love chew toys, cats scratching posts and birds a mirror. Providing them plenty of toys will encourage them to interact and also stop them from causing damages such as scratching the sofas or chewing various items around the house.
Always have in mind that pets explore their surroundings with their mouths, much like a child. It’s your responsibility as a new pet owner to confirm that anything that isn’t supposed to be chewed, licked or eaten is kept out of reach.
Allow A Period Of Adjustment
Coming into a new environment can be really stressful and make a new pet anxious, this is completely normal and highly expected. You should be prepared for crying from kittens and puppies and you may even experience this if you are rehoming a rescue pet.
It’s most likely to occur during the night, again, much as a human baby would. This is just for a short time while they adjust to their new surroundings. They will soon start to love their new home and feel at ease in the evenings. You shouldn’t be allowing pets to sleep in your bed in order to soothe them, instead, you need to set up an enclosed, quiet area with a comfortable bed or at times even a kennel in order to stop them from wandering. When new pets are stressed they are more likely to lash out and cause damages. Your aim is to keep them as comfortable and relaxed as possible.
It’s a good idea to create a little bit of a stockpile when it comes to taking care of a pet. You should most definitely be buying some items before your pet’s arrival. Some of the items you should consider buying include:
- Poo Bags
- Scratching Posts
- Kitty Litter
- Puppy Training Pads
- Grooming Kit
- Flea Treatments
It’s always advisable to enquire about the food your new pet has already been eating and purchase the same type of food they have already had, even if it’s poor quality. The stress of moving into a new home and meeting new people is enough for your pet to deal with, they don’t need the added anxiety of getting used to the new food. This can be done at a later date, especially if you want to improve the nutritional value they are receiving.
Clean Your House
Make sure your home is clean and ready for your new arrival. This means you should be clearing any dust from under units, beds and sofas to make sure nothing can harm your new pet. It’s a good idea to make sure any valuable items are put out of reach in order to protect them and this can be completed as part of your clean.
Take the opportunity to get organised and remove anything that could cause harm. Make the decision about where you’re going to keep your new pets supplies and find an area that suitable for your pet to get some much-needed exercise.
It’s always advised that your pet should stay with you during the day time however there are bound to be times where they will need to be left alone. Anyone who can’t provide a decent amount of time where there is someone in the family home should reconsider the responsibility of owning a pet. It’s not healthy for them to be left alone for extended periods of time.
There are other options too. If you’re lucky enough to take your pet to work then you should most definitely do this, just make sure you provide lots of regular toilet breaks. Another option is doggy daycare, although this can be quite expensive. If you do need to leave your pet at home it’s best to make sure they are in a secure location such as a kennel, cage or pen.
Other things to add to the list include:
- Arranging a trip to the vets
- Booking any vaccinations
- Pet insurance
- Thinking of a name
Having a new pet is definitely an exciting time, it’s important to make them feel as comfortable as possible so you can all enjoy the new addition to the family. Do you have any other tips for preparing for a new pet? Please share them in the comments below.
If you’ve already got a dog and want to get a second dog, check out Two Plus Dogs for some useful advice.