12 Essential Tips for First Time Pet Owners

Pets are lovable creatures that play with us, help us pass the time, and keep us company when we feel lonely. It feels great when your furry creature waits anxiously at your door every evening when you get off work. Research has revealed that pets can also help their owners overcome addictions and ease symptoms of extreme anxiety. Bringing a pet home can elicit feelings of excitement and joy. However, your pet will now depend entirely on you, and it is your responsibility to provide the best pet care. Here are 12 essential tips for first-time pet owners.

Stick to your budget

There are a lot of costs involved in taking care of a pet. You will need to pay for vaccines, buy high-quality food, and facilitate checkups and grooming sessions. Be honest about how much you are willing to spend and let your budget dictate which kind of pet you need to bring home. Try to adopt or buy a pug

Choose a pet that fits your lifestyle

Be sure you are ready to handle the responsibility of a pet and ascertain there are no pet restrictions in your neighborhood. Keep in mind that you may have a job and friends in your life, but your pet only has you and will depend on you for everything. Assess your lifestyle and talk to the staff at the shelter to determine which pet will best suit you.

Know your pet’s physical and social needs

Every breed will have its own set of unique needs that you must fulfill. For instance, dogs need regular exercise in walks and require social interaction with their owners. Take time to play with your pet each day or provide them with pet toys to prevent boredom and keep their minds sharp.

Choose a good vet

Not only do you need to choose a reputable vet, but you also need to find one that your pet will be comfortable with. Don’t wait too long after bringing your pet home to visit the vet. Depending on their age, the vet will recommend a suitable vaccination schedule and the best preventatives.

Buy high-quality pet food

Different breeds of pets have varying dietary needs. It is your responsibility to invest in high-quality food that will fit their needs and level of activity. Keep in mind that some foods can cause heart problems while others lead to systemic allergies. Good pet food is not cheap, but it is worth it if your pet thrives and grows healthy.

Deal with behavioural problems early on

It is normal for your pet to have accidents in the house once in a while. You might be wondering, will professional carpet cleaning remove pet odors? Fortunately, you can always hire a carpet cleaner to get rid of any mess your pet made. However, if these behavioural issues are not getting any better with time, you should consult an expert before it is too late to correct your pet.

Pet-proof your home

In the same way nesting mothers baby-proof their homes in preparation for a newborn, you should also ensure that your house is a safe place for your new furry friend. Ensure you tuck away any household chemicals in high shelves, remove breakables, and tape loose electrical cables to the baseboards. After you are done pet-proofing your home, get on all fours or lie down on the floor and do one last sweep to make sure nothing can harm your new pet.

Establish good communication with your pet

Your pet will speak to you through their body language. If you don’t pay close attention to him, you won’t be able to know what your pet is trying to tell you. Try to watch out for cues such as hunger or when your pet wants to go outside for a walk.

Learn how to deal with fearful pets

The first step to dealing with a fearful pet is to have a calm demeanour. Your pet will pick up on any of your emotions, and if you are tensed, they will also become tensed and hide away. If your pet seems to be scared of certain items in your house, leave them lying around or on top of the table so that they can get used to their presence. You could also try using positive reinforcements around these objects that intimidate them to develop positive feelings. Reward them heavily with treats during the initial weeks until the fear wears off.

Prepare for minor setbacks

Our pets will not always be on their best behaviour. You might come home one day and find they have chewed on your favourite shoes, or they got in the trash can and toppled it over. Avoid lashing out at them and teach them that certain behaviours are wrong. You could also contact pet helplines for further advice.

Set up a sleeping spot

It would be wise to get a small, comfortable bed for your pet to sleep in before you bring them home. For dogs, start by placing their bed in a confined space such as a crate where they can be safe and have some alone time if they need to. Cats love to sleep on clean surfaces, so ensure you clean their beds regularly.

Formulate a daily routine and stick to it

Some pets may refuse to eat or seem uneasy all the time after they find a new home. Understand that they are still getting used to the new environment and that change can be unsettling. If you want to help your furry friend adjust better, you could develop a routine and follow it consistently for a few weeks. Use treats as positive reinforcements until your pet becomes acclimatised to living in your home.

Final remarks

You are making a lifelong commitment to give them the best life possible by getting a pet. You should also be ready to take responsibility for your actions. For instance, you should pick up after them during walks and take responsibility for any damages they cause. Above all, please don’t forget to enjoy the journey and show your pet all the love and affection.

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