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Helping A New Pet Settle In

April 01, 2024

Are you considering adopting a new pet soon? Congratulations! Welcoming a new pet into your home can be a very rewarding and exciting experience! However, it is essential to understand that such major changes can be extremely stressful for our furry companions. You’ll need to take a few steps to help your new friend get used to their new home. Read on for suggestions from a local Galloway, OH veterinarian on how to welcome your new animal buddy.

How Can I Get My Home Ready For A New Pet?

Petproofing should be the first and foremost priority here. Many ordinary household objects are harmful to our four-legged friends. You should remove or secure anything that is unsafe.

Here are a few issues to address:

  • Toxic plants. Lilies are at the top of the list for cats, while Sago palms are among the most deadly to dogs. Visit the ASPCA website here for additional information on this.
  • Plastic bags / Ties
  • Chemicals: Any form of chemical, whether a cleaning agent, an automobile product, or something else, is hazardous.
  • Ropes and Cords: This includes drape cords, wires, thread, and yarn.
  • Medicine: Both prescription and over-the-counter medications are harmful.
  • Lawn/Garden Products: These include fertilizer, fungicides, and herbicides. Pesticides are also quite harmful. Slug bait, for example, is a frequent source of poisoning in dogs.
  • Small/sharp things, including beads, buttons, coins, craft kit components, jewelry, safety pins, and paper clips.

Don’t forget about the outdoors! If you’re acquiring a puppy, inspect your fencing and yard as well. Ask your Galloway, OH veterinarian for advice on this.

What Do I Need Before I Bring My New Pet Home?

A visit to the pet store should definitely be on the agenda. If possible, get this done before you bring your pet home. That way, you can have everything ready and waiting for them when the big day comes.

Here are some of the items you’ll need to pick up:

  • Food
  • Toys
  • Leash
  • Collar or Harness 
  • Bedding 
  • Crate/Carrier
  • Dishes
  • Grooming Supplies
  • First Aid Kit
  • Paw Care (Dogs
  • Litterbox and litter (for cats)
  • Treats
  • Food

You’ll need to consider your pet’s age and size when choosing some of these items. A treat made for a Chihuahua will not be large enough for a German Shepherd! The same holds true for cat litter boxes and litter. You should never use clay or clumping litter with kittens. Baby cats are clumsy, and occasionally consume litter by mistake. These litters can create intestinal obstructions, which can be extremely serious and even life-threatening.

For food, if you know what your new friend has been eating, start with that brand. It’s usually better to make adjustments gradually. Otherwise, your pet may develop an upset stomach.

Ideally, you’ll want to set everything up in a quiet location, such as a spare room. This will provide a spot for your pet to relax, decompress, and adjust to their new surroundings. That separation is especially necessary if you have additional pets. Contact your Galloway, OH veterinarian for further information.

What Is The First Thing I Should Do When I Bring My New Pet Home?

This will vary based on the type of animal you are getting. If you’re adopting a dog, take him out for a walk around the block. This is useful for several reasons. He’ll be able to release any nervous energy he has. It will also allow him to take a breather to process what is going on. He’ll also be able to get the lay of the land and understand his surroundings.

This, of course, would not apply to a cat. Bring Fluffy into her container and place her in her designated spot if you are acquiring a cat. Avoid forcing her out; instead, open the door and allow your new kitty to come out and explore when she is ready.

How Do I Introduce a New Pet to My Existing Pets?


If you have cats, you should do this gradually, over a few days. Allow the kittens to become accustomed to one other’s scents, and then meet when they appear to have accepted each other’s presence.


Ideally, you should introduce dogs before bringing them home, and make sure they like each other. Otherwise, allow them to meet for a walk on neutral ground. Pay close attention to both pups’ body language!


How Do I Form A Bond With A New Pet?

Do not expect this to happen right away. To be fair, some pets will immediately decide that their new human is the greatest thing ever. Fluffy may immediately curl up on your lap, and Fido may not take long to bring you a toy or begin wagging his tail when you approach the treat jar. However, some pets will just need time to get to know you.

Rescued pets frequently require time to feel comfortable. Even if they are heading to a better area than they were before, it is still a significant adjustment, and they will need to appraise their new circumstances.

What is the most important thing to remember? Do not force it. Love cannot exist without trust, and trust must be earned.

That said, we do have some pointers.

  1. Small Comforts: Making your home pleasant and hospitable for Fluffy and Fido requires little effort. Little things such as comfortable beds are essential. Cats will like scratching posts, boxes, window seats, and, of course, cat towers. (Tip: If you’re on a tight budget, consider upcycling a stepladder or storage cabinet.)
  2. Conversation: Talking to your pet in a soft, friendly tone will help them adjust to you. It doesn’t matter what you say; it’s the tone of your voice.
  3. Stability: Pets feel safer when they are kept on a consistent schedule. Get your pet started on their new regimen straight away. Consistency is also vital in terms of house rules. If you don’t want Fido on the couch, don’t let him ‘get away’ with it the first night; he’ll only become confused later.
  4. Snacks:  While we typically advise against indulging your pet, you can spoil your furry friend a bit in the first few days. Just stick to safe selections and don’t go too crazy.
  5. Toys: Fun toys not only help pets relieve stress and anxiety but also help them develop a positive relationship with their new home. Playtime is also beneficial, though you shouldn’t force it. Offer a variety and see what your pet prefers.

What Is The 3 3 3 Rule For Newly-Adopted Pets?

This is a useful rule of thumb to remember. It is frequently employed to describe dogs, but it also applies to other animals. It will take your pet three days to get a feel for new surroundings, three weeks to settle in, and three months to truly feel at home.


Make An Appointment At Your Galloway, Oh Veterinary Clinic


Of course, one of the first things you’ll want to do is call your veterinarian and schedule an appointment. Your new animal companion will require a comprehensive examination. Fido and Fluffy may also require parasite management, immunizations, microchipping, or spay/neuter surgery. Remember to bring any records you already have.


This is also an excellent opportunity for you to acquire precise advice on your pet’s nutrition and care requirements!


Have you got any questions about your pet’s new health or care? Contact us here at your Galloway, OH pet clinic today!

Posted in Behavior

175 Galloway Rd.
Galloway, OH 43119
t: (614) 870-3900
f: (614) 870-6655

Also serving Westland and
surrounding areas.

Opening Hours:
Hours are by appointment only including those for medication, food, and product pick-up.