Introducing A New Pet To Your Home

Introducing A New Pet To Your Home

Deciding to bring a new pet into your home is exciting and fun, but it can be nerve-wrecking if not done properly. Especially if there are already pets at home, or young children. Your new pet will most likely be nervous or feel intimidated by their new home, and it’s up to you as the pet parent to make sure everyone transitions smoothly. 


Making sure to take things slowly and use positive reinforcement makes introductions much easier and less stressful. Not only for your new pet, but you and your household as well. 


If you already have pets in your household, they might feel threatened by the newcomer. This is why it’s so important to introduce everyone in a slow, loving manner. You want everyone in the house to get along after all, right? 


There are many different tips that can make these introductions easier. Keep reading along to learn tips on introducing a new pet to your home.



Be Prepared 

Before bringing your new pet home, do your due diligence and learn what to expect from them. Learn what they need and what makes them comfortable. Have their needs met. Such as their food, food bowls, bed, cage, and toys. Knowing and having everything that your new pet needs will make this transition a whole lot easier! 



Have Plenty of Time

It isn’t the smartest decision to welcome a new pet if you are going to be at work for 8 hours of the day. With that being said, make sure you have time to bond with your new pet. 


Also make sure that they have plenty of time to explore their surroundings and new family! A weekend or taking some time off work is ideal when introducing a new furry friend to your home.



Introduce Scents

Sense of smell is how many animals interpret the environment around them. If you have other pets in your home, it may be a good idea to get them used to each other's scents–before they even meet!  


You can do this by bringing a blanket that smells like your pet, or petting one with a sock over your hand and letting the other pet smell it (let both pet’s smell each other's scent). This can make introducing them a lot easier, as they will already be familiar with each other’s  scent.



Control Initial Introductions

When introducing your new pet to the others in your household, it can be a good idea to keep them contained. Keep dogs on leashes and cats in crates (or separated by a gate). This will ensure no fighting if one happens to feel aggression towards the other (which can be totally normal at first). 


Never punish a pet for feeling aggression during their initial introduction! Doing so can lead to your pet associating punishment when the other pet is around, which will only backfire for the future. 



Use Positive Reinforcement 

Using verbal praises and giving treats will help the pets associate each other's presence with good things. When using positive reinforcement, make sure that all pets are getting rewarded, not just the new pet!



Don’t Force Relationships

Just like humans, every animal has its own personality. Some are shy and introverted, while others are outgoing and extroverted. Give your pet time to come out of their shell, and don’t force them to have relationships with others in the house. They will do this at their own pace.


Forcing relationships on pets can cause them to act aggressive towards one another, and they will get off on the wrong foot. Give them plenty of time and space to get used to each other.



Supervise Pets

With a new pet, never leave them unsupervised until you are 100% certain that they will get along. Fights can happen in a matter of seconds, and you don’t want anyone getting hurt, causing a trip to the vet’s office. 



Keep Food Separate

Some pets feel as though they have to compete for their food, it can be a natural instinct. Keeping their food and water on opposite sides of a room, or even better, separate rooms, will ensure that no one feels as though their resources will be taken from them. 


Over time if the pets get along well, you can begin to merge their food bowls closer to one another. Make sure you are supervising when doing so.


Give Love to All Pets

A new pet can be exciting, causing all of your attention to go to it. However, make sure every animal in the house is getting love and attention! The pets that were already living at home with you might need extra love, to make them feel more secure.


You want all of your furry friends to get along well with each other, as they will be living together for the rest of their lives! 



Conclusion

Above anything else, introduce your new pet to your home in a slow and loving manner. Making sure everyone is safe and getting along nicely. Never rush or force pet relationships, and make sure all pets are receiving the love they deserve! 


Transitioning to a new home, and welcoming a new furry sibling can be scary for your pet(s). Ensure that you and your pets will have a stress free transition by making things as comfortable as possible and giving them plenty of time to get to know each other! 

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