A Checklist Every Future Pet Owner Needs
By, Jessica Brody
1. Determine what pet is best
Ask yourself some basic questions: How much space do you have available, and how much will be needed as your pet grows into an adult? Do you have a yard? You should also think about getting your family tested for allergies before getting a pet. Don’t forget to factor in your lifestyle: If your family has a busy schedule, a lower-maintenance pet would be a better fit. If your family is very active, an energetic pet is perfect.
2. Finding your new pet
There are many different options for adopting a pet. You could go to a shelter, find a breeder, or even look in the local classifieds. Do background research when you find a place to get your pet, so you ensure that they are practicing responsible ethics when it comes to raising animals. Check reviews, read over a few websites, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
1. Get all the necessary items
Depending on the pet you get, they have different requirements. Most animals require a little home of some kind. For birds, you’ll need a birdcage with a perch and a proper liner. Cats will require a litter box, a scratching post to save your furniture, and a small bed. A dog also requires proper housing in case you decide to keep them outdoors.
You should focus on your pet’s health, as well. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends learning about which vaccines might be necessary and what food is best.
2. Pet-proof your rooms
Prepare to pet-proof each room that your pet might come in contact with. Put dangerous food in a top cupboard, keep toxic cleaners in the bathroom out of sight, and get something protective for the toilet paper. Also, keep the toilet lid closed and watch out for wires and cords, as dogs may enjoy chewing on them.
3. Help your pet acclimate
Introducing your pet to your home and family can be overwhelming. If your pet is a rescue, they might be jittery and anxious. To ease them into their new life, introduce them to one room and one family member at a time. Allow them to explore the house on their own.
If you have a cat or a dog, it’s important to train them on proper bathroom use. Using positive reinforcement when training your pets can be a valuable way for you to bond in a positive way. Make sure your cat regularly uses the litter box. Sign up for training classes with your dog to help them socialize with other pets and learn basic commands.
Playtime is one of the best parts about having a pet. Play with your pet at least once a day. If you have a dog, take them out for daily walks, play “fetch” and other games, and keep them active. Cats are also social, so pet them regularly.
Even though a pet can help support strong immune health, you still need to clean up after them. Having a high-quality vacuum (read plenty of reviews before purchasing) can make cleaning easier and more effective in picking up the fur, dirt, and particles that come from your pet.
4. Visiting a vet
A vet will help you know everything about your pet’s health. Articles point out that the cost of vet services can vary widely. Visit a number of vet facilities, and talk with friends who own pets in order to find a pet doc that will help you take care of your furry friend.
A pet can give you emotional fulfillment and many fond memories. Take care of them, clean up after them, and help them feel loved. Make sure they adjust well. They’re a part of your family now, so treat them that way.
If you’ve decided to get a pet, you’re in for an enjoyable ride. Pets offer a resource for bonding, a way to destress, and an aid for supporting personal health. There are a few things you should know about getting a pet, however. Here’s a checklist to help you understand the basics.