New Pet Transitions: From Adoption to a New Home - The Trupanion Blog
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New Pet Transitions: From Adoption to a New Home

New pet transitions from can be challenging when going to a new home.

If you’ve never experienced bringing home a pet for the first time, it truly is a joyful event, but it can come with its challenges. For example, a pet could display behavior issues or be scared due to changes in their surroundings or from being in an animal shelter. However, anticipating there could be some challenges, preparation can help ease the new pet transitions from adoption to your home, making it easier on you and your furry friend.

You have the ability to change a pet’s life on adoption day. What’s more amazing is in an instant – you can see that dog or cat and know they have found their forever home.

Similarly, being prepared as a new pet owner is incredibly important. Check out our eight tips on how to ease the new pet transitions process from the adoption room to their new home life.

New pet transitions: pet adoption to a new home

Preparation for the new pet

You can never over-prepare for bringing home a new pet. Make sure you have what you need on hand, especially because the last thing you want to be worried about is grabbing doggy bags when you have a new pup running around.

Here are some basic pet items you should have prior to adoption include:


A comfy bed to call their own! This might be the first-bed your furry friend has ever had, might as well make it spacious, cozy, and inviting! Don’t forget to find something easy to clean.


Whether you will be away from home to work or travel, a crate is an essential item for your best mate to have a safe space they can retreat too.


Enrichment toys can provide stimulation and help curb behavior, boredom, or anxiety issues. Also, enrichment toys have emotional, mental, and physical stimulation opportunities that can enhance new pet transitions to new environments.

Pet Gear

From harnesses to collars or leashes, make sure you have all of that handy when you pick up your new addition. Also, don’t forget a pet identification to include on your furry friend’s collar.

Potty essentials

Don’t forget the doggy bags, litter, or litter box. Seems like this would be an easy item to remember, but could easily be forgotten if you’re not used to buying this item on a regular basis.

New Pet Transitions can include allowing for free space and time to adjust to the new household.

Introduce slowly

Your new addition could be naturally nervous, arriving from a chaotic situation, or coming from a natural disaster and could be anxious due to their situation. They might need time to become comfortable and familiar with their new surroundings. “Everything needs to be gradual, and you need to be patient,” states the Trupanion pet program team, “if there is a favorite toy or blanket that they have at the shelter, see if you can take it home with you so that they have something familiar and positive to associate the experience with.”

Let them explore

Let your new furry friend feel out and explore their new home, on their own terms. Change can be scary, for anyone. Naturally, they need to know they’re in a safe and loving environment.

Every day is a new day

Each day can present new challenges, you’re sharing your life with a new furry friend. By “having to adapt to a new routine to incorporate your new pet and their needs can be difficult,” cites the Trupanion pet program team. Similarly, change can be difficult for all parties, take one day at a time, and know that your pet is in a loving home environment.

Earn their trust

Your pet’s environment is brand-new, so you must earn their trust. In addition, if your pet is a rescue or shelter pet you might not even know their background. “Pets from shelters can often be wary of humans and get anxious when alone. They may need significant time to become fully comfortable and trust their owners,” says the Trupanion pet program team.

If you have any concerns about your pet’s behavior, seek veterinary care and let your veterinarian know your concerns.

Embrace the challenge

Life is filled with challenging moments, and know this is just a bump in the road. With every new obstacle that is overcome, embrace the challenge, and know that you are providing a loving home for your furry friend to call home. Likewise, the joys of pet ownership come with many ups and downs, but the joy is immeasurable.

Take the time to bond

Once your best friend is settled in and is comfortable in their new home, take the time to bond together. Consider exploring a new pet-friendly destination, taking a road trip with your dog, or playing new enrichment toys with your cat. If possible, take some time off and really focus on getting to know one another.

New pet transitions: a new chapter for all family members

New pet transitions are an opportunity for growth for the pet owner, as much as for the pet. Just remember that your pet is in a brand new environment that they’re not familiar with. But by taking the time to prepare, and let your pet trust and explore, it can make for a happy, healthy, and fun environment for all.

How long did it take your new pet to transition into your home? Tell us in the comments below.

For more on pet care, read How to Puppy-Proof Your Home

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