4 #WHSTips Before Bringing Home a New Pet | Winnipeg Humane Society
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Bringing home a new pet can be very exciting, but it’s always good to be as prepared as possible before picking them up to keep your new furry friend safe, comfortable and happy in your home.

Here are 4 #WHSTips you can do to make sure everyone is ready for the new addition:

1. Pet-proof Your Home

It’s important you keep your pet safe: this means putting any dangerous items such as glass ornaments and trinkets out of reach; making sure trashcans and food sources have secure lids or are not where the pet can access them; removing or securing electrical cords and blinds so a pet cannot chew on them or choke; researching and removing any plants that are toxic for pets; making sure they cannot access chemicals, cleaning products, medicines, gum and other dangerous foods, as well as small choking hazards such as hair ties and inappropriate toys. You should also secure all doors and windows, and patch or block any holes or dangerous spaces you find along your walls, floors and ceilings so pets can’t hide or escape. Depending on the pet, you may also want to investigate your yard and ensure it is safe from dangers and secure from escapes.

2. Prepare a Space and Plan for When You are Away

Whether your pet will roam freely or be confined to a sanctuary room, kennel, or secure play area, it’s important you do your research and ensure you are providing enough space and security for your new friend depending on size and species. Comfortable bedding and hiding spaces should be provided depending on their needs. You may also want to research daycare and kenneling options for times when you will need to be away from home longer than a normal work day.

3. Provide Enrichment and Stock Up on Pet Supplies.

It’s important for pets to have appropriate items to play with to satisfy their natural urges to chew, hunt, hide, scratch, and play. There are toys and puzzles designed to keep your pet mentally engaged, and perches and hiding spots to keep them feeling cozy and safe which you can find in our WHS Pet Shop. Once again, do your research: pets such as dogs will need chew toys as they teethe, cats need perches to climb and posts or cardboard to scratch and file down their nails, rabbits and rodents also need to chew to keep their teeth a healthy length, etc. Other supplies such as collars, leashes, food, and litter should also be well stocked before your new friend comes home. We recommend you purchase the same food the pet has been eating as the stress of moving into a new home can increase and result in sickness if you also switch their diets suddenly. If you decide to change foods, you should plan for a transition period so they can slowly adjust to their new diet.

4. Expect an Adjustment Period

It often takes 3 months for a new pet to feel comfortable with the routine in their new home. Be prepared for crying, whining, meowing, or other vocalizations that indicate distress, especially at night. Setting up an enclosed, quiet space with a comfortable bed, or a kennel that can be closed to prevent wandering, may help them feel safe and allow them to settle at night.