The holidays are a popular time to bring a new pet home, so Trupanion has released a list of tips to help these new pet owners get started.
(PR.com) January 3, 2010 — While it’s respectable to want to give a pet a home during the holidays, the unfortunate fact remains that many pets are returned to animal shelters and humane societies after the novelty of a new pet wears off.
Trupanion, North America’s fastest growing pet insurance company, has released a list of tips to help new pet owners keep their pets.
Expect a Transition Period – Whether a pet comes from a breeder or a shelter, there will be a transition period where the new pet is adjusting to its new life. This can take anywhere from a couple weeks to a few months, and even longer when in the midst of the holiday season. While this period can be frustrating, it is normal. Give the pet time to adjust before assuming there are life-long behavioral problems.
Expect Some Accidents – Even if the pet is guaranteed to be potty trained, there will be some accidents during the transition period. The pet needs to figure out its new surroundings and the appropriate places to relieve itself.
Get to Know Your Breed – Research your dog or cat’s breed. While not every Boston Terrier is going to be the same, there are certain personality traits and health concerns that are inherit in the breed. Preparing for these characteristics will make you much better prepared to deal with them when they present themselves.
Purchase Chew Toys/Scratching Posts – Dogs tend to chew and cats tend to scratch. In order to help save your furniture, shoes, and other belongings, give you pet another way to do what it loves.
Purchase Other Necessities – Being prepared with food, treats, dishes, beds, toys, leashes, collars, and other necessities will save a lot of headache moving forward.
Join Groups – Building a community around your pet’s species and/or breed can help you enjoy your pet and will give you a group of people to talk to about behavior or health issues.
Develop a Relationship with a Veterinarian – It’s important to choose a veterinarian you trust and who understands you and your pet’s needs. Do some research on veterinarians in your area and elicit advice from your pet community. Having a professional to turn to when something goes wrong will save you a lot of frustration.
Prepare for the Unexpected – No matter how much you educate and prepare yourself, and try to protect your pet, the unexpected can always happen. Make sure to place an I.D. tag on your pet’s collar with the pet’s name and your phone number clearly visible in case your pet gets lost. Also, invest in pet insurance to help protect yourself against high veterinary bills associated with accidents and illnesses.
“Pet ownership can be a wonderful thing if you are prepared for the responsibility,” said Darren. “We hope these tips will help new pet owners navigate through the ups and downs of owning a pet.”
Heather Kalinowski lives in the Seattle area with her husband, newborn son, and two rescued pups – an Italian Greyhound named Ava and a Spaniel mix named Jackson. She enjoys reading, writing, spending time with her family, and volunteering with Italian Greyhound Rescue.