Bringing Home A New Pet

Help Ensure A Smooth Transition

2023-02-26 Humane Society of Fremont County

A kitten acting cute and looking at its ownerBringing a new pet home can be an exciting and rewarding experience. Whether you’ve adopted a new puppy, kitten, or adult animal, there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure a smooth transition for both you and your new furry friend.

Adopting a new pet is a big responsibility, but it can also be a joyful and rewarding experience. With proper care and attention, your new furry friend will soon become a cherished member of the family. Remember to be patient and understanding as your pet adjusts to their new surroundings, and enjoy the journey together.

Create a Safe Space 

As a responsible pet owner, it's important to make your new pet feel comfortable and safe in their new environment. One way to do this is by creating a safe space for them.

Before bringing your pet home, make sure you have a designated area for them. This could be a small room or a section of a larger room. Make sure the space is free of any hazards and that there's nothing in the room that your pet could potentially ingest or hurt themselves on. It's also a good idea to keep this space separate from any other pets in the household until your new pet has adjusted.

Once you've chosen the space, set it up with your pet's bed, food and water bowls, and some toys. Make sure their bed is comfortable and cozy, and provide some soft blankets and pillows for them to snuggle up with. Place the food and water bowls in an easily accessible location, and make sure they're filled with fresh water and high-quality pet food.

It's important to make your new pet feel safe and secure, especially if they're feeling anxious or overwhelmed. Consider setting up a crate or playpen in their safe space, so they have a place to retreat to when they need some alone time. This can also be helpful in house training, as it provides a designated space for your pet to go to the bathroom.

Give your new pet some time to adjust to their safe space. Let them explore and get comfortable on their own terms. Avoid overwhelming them with attention, and instead give them space to explore their surroundings at their own pace. With patience and care, your new pet will begin to feel comfortable and settled in their new home.

Establish a Routine 

Establishing a routine is crucial for the overall wellbeing of your new pet. In addition to regular feeding, play, and exercise schedules, it is essential to create a structured daily routine that includes regular bedtimes and wake-up times. This will help your pet develop a sense of consistency and predictability in their new environment, which can help them feel more secure and at ease.

When establishing a routine, it’s important to consider your pet’s unique needs and preferences. For example, some pets may prefer to eat at certain times of the day, while others may enjoy frequent, smaller meals throughout the day. Additionally, some pets may be more active in the morning, while others may prefer to play and exercise in the evening.

Keep in mind that it may take some time for your pet to adjust to a new routine. Be patient and consistent with your efforts, and provide plenty of positive reinforcement to help your pet feel comfortable and secure. As your pet becomes more accustomed to their routine, you can gradually introduce new activities or adjust your schedule as needed.

By establishing a regular routine, you can help your pet feel safe and secure in their new home, which can contribute to a lifetime of health and happiness.


 A cat snuggling with its owner

Socialization is a crucial step in helping your new pet adjust to their new home and surroundings. Introduce your pet to family members and friends gradually, as it can be overwhelming for them to meet too many people at once. It's important to allow your pet to sniff around and explore their surroundings on their own terms.

When introducing your pet to new people or pets, it's important to be patient and not force interaction. Encourage calm and positive behavior from everyone in the household, including other pets, and provide positive reinforcement when your pet displays good behavior.

If your pet is exhibiting fearful or anxious behavior, it's important to work with a professional trainer or behaviorist to help them overcome their fears and build confidence. Socialization can take time, but with patience and consistency, your pet can learn to feel comfortable and confident in their new environment.

Health and Wellness 

Taking care of your pet's health and wellness is an essential part of being a responsible pet owner. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Veterinary Care
    It's important to find a veterinarian that you trust and make sure your pet receives regular checkups and necessary vaccinations. During these visits, the vet can also address any health concerns specific to your pet and provide recommendations for diet and exercise.

  • Nutrition
    Feeding your pet a healthy and balanced diet is crucial for their overall health and well-being. It's important to select high-quality pet food that meets your pet's nutritional needs and to avoid overfeeding. Your vet can provide guidance on the appropriate type and amount of food for your pet.

  • Exercise
    Regular exercise is important to maintain your pet's physical and mental health. The amount and type of exercise needed can vary depending on the pet's age, breed, and health status. For example, dogs may require daily walks or playtime, while cats may benefit from interactive toys or scratching posts.

  • Grooming
    Regular grooming helps keep your pet clean and healthy. This includes brushing, bathing, and nail trimming. For pets with long hair, regular brushing can help prevent mats and tangles. Nail trimming is important to prevent discomfort and potential injury to your pet. 

By staying on top of your pet's health and wellness needs, you can help ensure that they live a long and happy life.

Training and Discipline

Training and discipline are essential for helping your new pet to adjust and learn how to behave properly in their new environment. Setting boundaries and establishing rules can help your pet feel secure, and prevent destructive behaviors. Training should begin as soon as possible after bringing your new pet home, and should focus on teaching basic commands such as "sit," "stay," and "come."

Consistency is key when it comes to training your pet. Use positive reinforcement techniques such as treats, toys, or praise when your pet displays good behavior. Avoid using punishment or negative reinforcement, as it can damage your pet's trust and relationship with you.

If your pet displays negative behaviors, such as chewing on furniture or barking excessively, take time to identify the root cause of the behavior. Some behaviors can be addressed through positive reinforcement training, while others may require more specialized training or help from a professional trainer.

Remember to always be patient and consistent when training your pet. With time and dedication, you can help your pet to become a well-behaved and happy member of your household.