If you’re a first-time pet owner, there are some things you need to know. Taking care of a pet takes work, but owning a pet comes with some definite perks. It helps to have a little wisdom before you even begin to pick out your new pet. To make the most of your life with your new pet, keep these important tips in mind:
You Need the Right Pet
If you’re going to get a pet, you need to make sure you get one that fits you. Think carefully about your lifestyle, home, and future plans as you consider your new companion. If you travel quite a bit or think you may be moving around a lot, consider a pet that will be easier to have tagged along on your journeys. Have a passion for outdoor adventures? Think about getting a dog that loves nature as well. Even if you have a few allergies, there are breeds that won’t cause you discomfort.
You’ll Have to Make Changes at Home
Never owned a pet? It’s likely you’ll need to adapt your home life somewhat. For animals that will be let out in the yard, ensure space is secured – if you don’t have a fence, you’ll need to consider installing one; if you do have a fence, be sure to check that it’s completely secure.
Back inside, be prepared for pet messes. Dogs and cats tend to track messes from room-to-room, and many shed like crazy, so you may need to up your cleaning game. Start by upgrading your vacuum with one that can withstand pet hair. Miele vacuums, for example, are designed with “high suction power and powerful bristle brush motors,” which make them a good option for successfully cleaning up thick clumps of dog or cat hair. You may also want to invest in a good mop and a stain remover that’s safe for upholstery.
Lastly, keep a few solutions for odors on hand and try to keep your home as pet-friendly as possible to prevent accidents.
Some Pets Take Time to Adjust
You may fall in love at first sight with your new pet, but it will take time for you both to adjust to your life together. Animals are sensitive to change and may appear frightened when you first bring them home. You may even feel a little anxious yourself.
The best way to help you both settle into your new life is to form a solid daily routine. Keep feedings at the same time every day. Take your dog out for a couple of walks around the new neighborhood to allow him/her a chance to explore and expel energy. Try to stay positive and patient as your pet learns their new surroundings.
Bonding With Your Pet Isn’t Always Instant
For some pets and owners, the bond happens from the start. For others, it may take time to feel a real sense of connection. Rescue animals can be particularly slow to warm up to new people, especially if they have been abused or neglected in the past. So be patient in making your new pet your best friend.
Show your pet affection but beware that hugs aren’t always helpful. Spending time training and playing with your pet is a much better way to build affections and help you to trust each other. Once you’ve built a positive, strong bond it’s sure to last a lifetime.
Your Pet Depends on You for Health and Safety
No matter how independent your pet seems, he/she needs you to stay safe and healthy. Regular vet visits are a must for all pets, and more grooming may be required for certain breeds. If you’re not planning on breeding your pet, consider spaying/neutering and talk to your vet about getting a microchip.
Microchips are small, easy to insert and will help you find your pet should he/she ever get lost. While at home and on walks, pets tend to be attracted to human food and plants, so make sure you know what could be toxic for your pet.
Pets can bring connection and joy to first-time pet owners, but they also require some commitment on your part. You’re taking on a task that is sure to make you happy for years to come, so enjoy your new companion.