A kitten sitting with their person

There are few things more exciting in life than welcoming a new being into your home, be it two-legged or four. 

While bringing home two-legged babies is outside of our level of expertise at Animal Medical Hospital, we have all of the best tips for bringing home a furry one! Read on to be sure that you know all the latest information when preparing for a new pet.

Preparing for a New Pet

When preparing for a new pet, prep work is the key to success. There is so much to do before you even bring the new critter into the mix, such as:

Home considerations – Before your new pet arrives home, be sure that your environment is safe and appropriate for the animal you are introducing. Pet-proofing can be particularly important if you are getting a puppy or kitten. Consider areas that may need a gate or other blockade, and move breakable/chewable/edible items out of reach.

Other pets – Be sure to call us and schedule a wellness evaluation for all pets in your home prior to adding to the family. This helps ensure that your resident animals are in peak health and allows us to help you navigate any potential issues.

Other humans – Prepare other people, especially children, for your new pet’s arrival. Many animals need a little breathing room until they feel comfortable, so it is important to give them space. Discuss keeping a predictable routine, especially in the first week or so, and how and when to handle your new pet. 

Creating a welcoming environment – You definitely want your new pet to feel welcome! Be sure that there is an appropriate feeding station, enrichment items, and a secure sleeping area such as a crate. Don’t forget that you need a litter box for each cat in the home plus an additional one. You may also consider using pheremones such as Feliway or Adaptil to help create an easier transition. 

Doing your research – Knowing what you are getting into is half the battle. Be sure that you do your research. You should know how to feed your new bundle of joy, what exercise requirements are necessary, what medical care is needed, and what potential special needs he or she may have (hint: we are happy to help answer questions).  

Bringing Home Baby

When it is finally time to bring home your new pet, go slow and keep your expectations low. A new pet will often take some time to warm up to your family. 

  • Predictable waking, potty, play, meals, and rest times can help to ease the transition for ma
  • ny pets. 
  • Consider keeping your new addition in his or her own, small area at first so that they can acclimate. You can introduce them and other pets to one another via smell such as a used blanket. 
  • Supervise interactions between pets and people closely at first, paying close attention to body language. Each pet should have his or her own area to retreat to if desired. Keep food, toys, and treats out of the equation until you can predict how each animal will react. 
  • It is also important that we get to meet your new pet within a few days of bringing him or her home. This wellness visit will be our chance to examine your pet for health problems, provides an opportunity to discuss questions or concerns, and allows us to establish a relationship with your new pet. 

It can be so exciting to bring home an addition, but preparing for a new pet can be a lot of work. Taking the right steps helps to ensure that your growing family stays happy and healthy as it expands!