Is your family welcoming home a new puppy or kitten? Like children, young pets thrive on stability, consistency, and a set routine. Knowing what to expect each day reduces a pet’s stress and anxiety, which are common causes of behavioral issues. Here are three reasons why you should establish your new pet’s routine as soon as you welcome her home.
#1: Pets learn best with consistency
Before bringing your new pet home, discuss their rules with your family. Will your puppy be allowed on the couch? Is your kitten sleeping in your bed or in the living room? The entire family needs to be on the same page about consistent ground rules for the new pet to avoid uncertainty.
Consistency is also key when housetraining your new puppy. Taking your pup out the same door, to the same spot in the yard, and using the same cue word for elimination will help your new pet understand what you expect much more quickly.
#2: Train your young pet early on to prevent problem behaviors
Admit it—you’ve had a tough time teaching your excited puppy to stop jumping up for attention or preventing your feisty kitten from climbing up your pant leg. While these naughty behaviors may be adorable when your pet is small, consider the same actions when they are full-grown. A 100-pound Lab leaping at your face for a kiss, or a 10-pound cat clawing up your leg in the summer, won’t be so cute. Build a good foundation by teaching your pet acceptable behaviors from the moment you bring them home—remember, teaching your furry pal the right actions is much easier than correcting problems later on.
#3: Follow a routine to reduce stress in your pet
Since pets can’t understand any change in their daily routine, abrupt differences can be stressful. Young pets quickly pick up on a normal routine, and variance can create undue stress. For example, if you bring your new pet home when you’re on vacation and can spend all day at home with them when you resume your normal work schedule and leave each morning, your pet may become anxious and stressed. Welcoming a new pet during a vacation allows extra bonding time but can set a precedent for an unusual routine.
Are you bringing a new pet into your life? We’d love to meet your new best friend, too—call us to schedule a wellness visit.