A Guide to Protecting Your New Pet

When you’ve recently brought a new pet into your home, you might be desperate to protect them and look after them as much as possible, especially if you’ve never had a dog before. To make sure that you’re able to keep your pet away from danger and healthy throughout their first days with you and beyond, here are some of the actions that you can take to ensure that your pet can thrive in their new home. 

1. Check for Home Hazards 

The first step that you should take once you’ve brought your pet home is to check for hazards around your home. Your house should be a safe space for them where you don’t have to constantly check on them or worry about them, and yet homes can present many hazards to your beloved furry friend. 

For instance, you should take up any wires that your pet could chew through, lock away toxic cleaning chemicals, and check which flowers and plants that can be poisonous to pets. It’s also important that you put any food that pets are allergic to safely away in your kitchen cupboards, and that you don’t leave medications or sharp objects lying around. You should also be careful with soaps and cosmetics, and you might consider getting pet gates that can keep your pets out of rooms that could be dangerous to them. 

2. Take Out Pet Insurance 

Although you might not be able to protect your pet from every accident and eventuality, it’s possible to do everything that you can to pick up the pieces in the event of an emergency. One of the ways that you can ensure that your pet is able to get back to good health as soon as possible after an incident is by taking out pet insurance. 

Pet insurance will be able to cover a lot of the vet bills that your pet incurs. This will mean that you don’t constantly have to worry about whether you’re able to afford professional care for your pet, and that you don’t stay away from the vets because you don’t think that you will be able to afford it. However, you should always check the terms of your pet insurance policy beforehand to see what it covers, as a lot of companies don’t cover pre-existing conditions. If you haven’t yet taken out pet insurance, you should start looking around for the best coverage for your dog as soon as you can. 

3. Keep Them on the Leash 

Until you can trust your pet and have fully trained them, it is often best to keep them on the leash, especially if they do not have great recall. As soon as they are off the leash, it can be difficult to keep track of what your pet is doing, and they might end up injuring themselves or getting lost. If your pet loves the freedom of being off the leash or running around with their furry friends, but they’re not yet trained to a high enough standard, you should consider looking for enclosed fields and other outdoor spaces that your pet might love, some of which are available for you to rent out for an hour or two. This will mean that you do not have to panic every time your pet goes out of sight. 

4. Train Them 

If you want to ensure that your pet is protected at all times, and that you can prevent them from harming themselves when they are out of the house, you should make sure that training is a top priority on your agenda. Training your pet is vital as it will allow you to stop them from performing activities and habits that could injure them and will allow you to keep them close and under control at all times. 

It can be difficult to train your pet, though, and some breeds are easier to train than others. However, it is vital that you can train them to adhere to basic commands, such as No, and Stay, and you can do this by using a training whistle and treats. If you are struggling to do this, you should consider searching for some good training groups and professionals in your area that might be able to help you, or you could seek the advice of a behavioral therapist if your dog is starting to look like it’s untrainable. 

5. Stay Aware of Local Events

To keep your dog safe, it is also important that you stay aware of what’s going on in your area. For instance, you should make sure that you know about local dog theft, as well as poisoning and toxic substances. You can do this by joining your local community groups on social media and by chatting to other pet owners in the area. 

It’s also important that you’re aware of weather events, or else you might find that your pets fall ill. For instance, if your hometown is currently having a heatwave, you should keep your pets inside, or walk them early in the morning or late at night. This can prevent them from getting heatstroke or from harming their paws. 

6. Fence Off Your Backyard

You should also make an effort to fence off your backyard if you have a dog. This can prevent them from escaping your yard when you’re not looking and from being left to wander around the outside world on their own, where there are hazards such as traffic. 

You should always check that the fence you choose is tall enough, though, and that your pet can’t jump over it, and you should move any furniture away from your fence that your pet could use to climb over the fence in question. It’s also important that you check the state of your fence after storms and major weather events that may have damaged it. For instance, gaps could have opened, which your pet could crawl through, or splinters could injure your pet if they brush past them. 

Brenda Thompson

Brenda Thompson is an expert in dog behavior with over a decade of experience, and she is also passionate about working with cats and birds. In addition to contributing pet content to petdogplanet.com, she is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant. Brenda received her Bachelor of Science in Biological and Biomedical Sciences & Philosophy from Colorado College in 2014. She has taken classes in writing and remote animal behavior consulting, as well as courses on how to manage aggressive dogs and litter box issues. In 2016, she obtained her dog behavior consulting certification and joined the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.

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