Adopting an animal is a very exciting time. It can also be very stressful for you and your new pet. Over my lifetime I have adopted a few different dogs and cats. It’s hard because we do not know what kind of life they have had before we adopted them.There are different adjustment situations. This depends greatly on the pets age. Puppy’s and kittens will adjust quickly while older pets can take a while. The first thing you should do is allow your pet time to rest. They really need a few quiet days just to settle in. Then you need to set a routine for your pet. Making life predictable for your pet helps them to adjust to their new surroundings a lot quicker. You will need to establish a regular schedule for meals, play, exercise, nap and sleep time.
Now you really need to start working on bonding with your pet. Inviting your new pet to join the family and giving him plenty of love and attention will help him adjust sooner. If your pet has been in a animal shelter for a while he probably has had very little personal attention. It is your job at this point to give him plenty of affection. But, you will need to set and establish some house-hold rules. When it comes to behavior problems there can be many causes. It is easiest to find out why they are behaving badly. If your dog is barking too much find the cause it could be separation anxiety, territorial behavior or fear. Or a cat that suddenly stops using the litter box. Maybe they don’t like the litter or something scared them while they were in the litter box. Try to investigate behavior problems.
Pet proof your home! Just doing a few little things around the house can make your life with your pet allot easier. Pick up any things you don’t want chewed up. Put your trash in a closet where your pet can’t reach it. If your pet is shy around guests don’t push it. Allow your pet to approach visitors when they are comfortable doing so. If your pet is a barker it is a great idea to confine them to a room until your guests have settled in. Never try to show your pet what they have done and then discipline them after. Pets cannot connect prior behavior to later consequences, even if you show them the evidence. For instance you come home and your shoe is chewed up. It’s useless to discipline them for it. You really need to catch them in the act. Remember pets do not misbehave out of spite or revenge. They do not have a moral sense of whats right and wrong. They learn from being rewarded when they do good things and disciplined for bad things. For instance when my dog does something good he gets a treat, when he gets in the trash or is caught chewing on the fan wire he gets a squirt of water and told no and then removed from the area.
Remember above all you brought this animal into your home. Whether it was for companionship, security or any other reasons. The number one rule in adjusting to your new pet is to be patient, kind and loving and your pet will give you many years of love and great friendship in return.