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How To Bring A New Pet Into Your Family

Now that a lot of us are spending more time at home with our families during the Covid-19, many homeowners are thinking about bringing in a new furry member into the family. Before you start looking for Fido, check out these simple guidelines to ensure the safety, happiness, and serenity of your new household.

    1. After dog proofing your house and gathering much needed supplies, try to create a daily routine and stick with it. Set up your house, determine where your new dog’s crate, bed or sleeping area will be, and what the house rules are. Communicate the house rules with all family members so there is consistency and make sure your pet knows what to expect. It’s easier to start off right than to break bad habits.
    2. Resist the temptation to let your pet run loose in the house during the first few weeks, especially if you have other pets. If your dog or puppy feels calm and relaxed you can start letting them explore other areas of the house. You may need to give a few guided tours on a leash and let your pet sniff everything. If your pet tries to jump on furniture calmly redirect him/her.
    3. Puppies should remain in a limited location where you can supervise them until they are house trained. Try to stay close to home and don’t have any major travel plans because it is important to learn your pets patterns and behaviors before you can predict how it will respond to a dog sitter.
    4. If you already have other dogs at home, gradually let them meet one at a time on a leash in an environment with no food or toys. Cat owners must secure a contained meeting place where their new dog is on a leash and cannot chase their cat. Let it be a relatively brief encounter.
    5. Be aware of abnormal behaviors or illnesses in the first couple weeks and contact your veterinarian.

Ultimately, it's important your other pets are not ignored, and you are giving them plenty of attention as well. You want your existing pets to feel included and comfortable with the idea of a new pet in the house. Have fun, play hard, enjoy lots of cuddles, and the blessings of having a pet.

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