Top 5 Tips New Pet Parents Must Know
“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than you love yourself.” – Josh Billings
How many times have you heard someone say, I’m going to get a dog? Lots of people think about it, but not everyone goes through with it. The truth is that, in many ways, your first dog is like your first child. So if you’re thinking about bringing home a new pet dog, there are things you should know before making that important decision. For many of us, the day we get our first pet is one of the most memorable and rewarding days of our lives. Not only are you welcoming a new member into your family, but you’re also taking responsibility for another life that depends on you to care for it.
It’s no secret that dogs can be man’s best friend, but bringing home your first dog as an adult may feel like an intimidating prospect if you haven’t had much experience caring for a pet. From finding the right breed to understanding how to keep him healthy and happy to managing his behavior, you need to be fully equipped to enable you to navigate your new role as a pet parent and avoid some common mistakes new dog owners make along the way. Take your time deciding on what kind of dog you want, in order to have the best experience with your new dog. It’s important to take the time to learn about different breeds and choose one that will be best suited for your lifestyle and situation. A new puppy in the house can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be! Here are our top five essential tips to make your first dog experience easier, smoother, and more fun!
- Get your dog's DNA tested
You’ve probably heard about all the benefits of pet ownership and how pet dogs can be wonderful companions for families with children, but you may not know all the things you need to consider before bringing home your first dog. DNA tests allow you to better understand your dog's genetics. These types of tests can tell you if your dog is likely to be affected by specific conditions or whether they may pass on the genes associated with these conditions. Understanding your new pet better makes it easier to take care of them, with first hand knowledge on their needs and vulnerabilities.
- Ask your veterinarian about vaccinations
If you’re thinking about getting your first dog, there are some key things to keep in mind that can make this exciting time safer and smoother for you and your new friend, and one of them is keeping them at their prime health. Vaccines remain critical to your pet's lifelong health. By following the vaccination schedule your vet recommends, you reduce your pet's chances of acquiring life-threatening diseases.
- Have supplies on hand before getting your pet
A dog is the perfect companion for new pet parents who want to bring an adorable, furry addition into their family. But before you rush out and buy the first puppy you see, make sure you’re prepared to welcome him or her into your life! We gave a few great tips in a latter article about the supplies you need to have in stock in preparation for your new parenthood, and by being prepared for all of your pet’s needs, you’ll be able to concentrate on acclimating them to their new environment and begin training. The dog bed basket tops the list of much needed supplies as a new pet mom or dad.
- Consider buying pet insurance
Loving and caring for your new pet dog can be a wonderful way to add some extra love to your life, but it’s important to know what you’re getting into beforehand. Since you don’t want to find out about the negatives of dog ownership after you’ve already signed on the dotted line, you have to remember that it all comes with a budget for taking care of them as well. That is where pet insurance comes in handy. Having pet insurance allows you to choose treatments for your ailing or injured pet based on the best medical option available and not restricted based on family finances. Most pet insurance policies reimburse up to 80% of costs after deductibles, and pet insurance provides an easy way to budget pet care costs.
- Make sure your home is safe for your pet
Your life is about to change drastically when you bring home your first dog. This can be one of the most rewarding and stressful times in your life, especially if it’s your first pet with children in the home. There are a lot of different things to think about from food and vet care to training, grooming, exercise, and playtime that can overwhelm even the most prepared parent or pet owner. We all want to make sure that our pets are safe in our homes. Michigan State University Extension recommends “Pet proofing” as the best way to go through and evaluate your home and make the necessary adjustments to ensure that your pets and your belongings are safe. They range from keeping medications, cleaners, chemicals and laundry supplies on high shelves, keeping all foods out of reach, taking care of dangling wires from lamps, DVD players, televisions, stereos and telephones out of reach of your new pet, etc.
These days, many families are adding pets to their family! If you’re thinking about getting a new pet dog and raising it from puppyhood, there are many things you should know about what it takes to be a pet parent. We hope we have given you a head start!
Are you ready for your new pet? Let’s go new mama and papa!