Hooray, you have a new furry family member! We’re so happy for you and your new pet! We strongly advise lots of snuggles, hugs, playtime, and belly rubs….all the fun bonding stuff. :) Beyond those very important things, here are our Top 5 Tips!
1. Protect your pet with a registered microchip and a customized I.D. tag for their collar.
Not so Fun Fact: 1 in 3 pets become lost at some point in their life. Don't think this can't happen to your pet.
Fun Fact: Studies show, microchips with up-to-date registrations (current pet parent contact info), reunite more lost pets with their families than any other reunification tool!
Transfer your pet’s microchip registration into your name. We can’t stress this one enough—if your pet’s microchip is not registered to you, anyone who finds your pet (when lost) will have no way of knowing who you are, let alone how to contact you to reunite you with your pet.
- Successfully registering your pet’s microchip is not as straightforward as many think, please click here for our insider tips on how to protect your pet with a registered microchip!
Keep a collar with an up-to-date ID tag on your pet at all times (yes even on our feline friends). Your pet’s customized ID tag should have, at minimum, their name and your cell number. Bonus points for your city and state, and if you're comfortable, your address.
- With a double sided engravable ID tag, you should have room to include your pet’s name, your phone number, your first and last name, your city/state, and (if you’re comfortable) your street address.
- Transfer your pet’s microchip registration into your name. We can’t stress this one enough—if your pet’s microchip is not registered to you, anyone who finds your pet (when lost) will have no way of knowing who you are, let alone how to contact you to reunite you with your pet.
2. Give your new pet ample time, space, and patience when adjusting to their new family, home, routine, and any canine and/or feline siblings. Some pets bound happily into their new homes and lives, however for most, it can be very stressful. One of the best things you can do is not go into this with unrealistic expectations of your new pet, especially as how easily they adjust will have a great deal to do with you!
- While every pet is different, in general, 4-8 weeks is a realistic timeline if you're helping and supporting them as needed during this adjustment process. If your pet came to you with any post traumatic stress or other special needs, it may take longer and that’s OK! Kindness, patience, and making all introductions very slowly will help tremendously! Here are some helpful tips on how to best support your new pet:
- Introducing any current pet(s) you may have to your new pet can be tricky, take a gradual approach, as this will affect their relationship going forward (in a positive or negative way).
3. Don’t change their food. Your new pet is already experiencing so many new things right now, and for some pets this may elicit stress or anxiety. And, just like with us humans at times, this can be accompanied by some GI upset. So, the last thing they (or you) need is tummy trouble due to a premature food change. Give your pet at least 4-8 weeks to get settled in before considering a food change—unless there is a medical condition that requires an immediate transition.
Pro Tip: When the time is right, changing your pet’s food should always be done very gradually (over a 7-10 day period); this will help to lessen any GI upset!
4. Consider pet insurance, especially when acquired early (right after you adopt), this can be a game changer for you and your pet! There are coverage options of 70%, 80%, and even 90% after your deductible is met—with deductibles as low as $100! Wellness coverage can also be added to help with your pet’s annual or semi-annual checkups. At Adopt a Pet, we are proud to partner with Nationwide Insurance. Protect your pet today—click here to create a custom plan, that suits your pet’s needs and your budget!
5. Schedule a Vet Checkup. Even if they appear to be healthy, take your new pet to your veterinarian of choice for a checkup within the first few weeks. Moving forward, annual checkups for adult pets and semi-annual checkups for senior pets, help detect and address any health concerns early on and potentially avoid bigger issues down the road.
Last but not least, enjoy getting to know each other—this is such a special time for you and your new pet! Here’s one last bonus tip: take lots of photos and videos! 🙂
Thanks for adopting!