Though many children grow up with pets in the house, whether those be cats and dogs, hamsters or maybe even a spider or snake. Not all kids are around pets growing up, which means many adults grow up not knowing how to take proper care of a pet. That’s perfectly okay, as long as they’re willing to learn what’s required when adopting a new pet. What follows are eight of our tips to help in the process of learning how to take care of a pet.
1. Responsibility is Key
When you adopt an animal, you’re taking on the responsibility of that animal’s life. You, and possibly your family, are going to be this creature’s entire life, and it’s up to you to take care of them. That means making sure they always have enough food and water, that their excrement is cleaned up (in whatever form that takes), they are given the proper shots and vaccinations, and are taken to the vet when they have to be attended to by a doctor. As the owner of a pet, it’s absolutely integral to be aware of these responsibilities and to live up to them.
2. Emergency Vet Options
If something does go wrong with your animal, you should try to be aware of all the emergency vet options in your area. A 24 hour animal hospital is a great resource to have, as things can go wrong in the middle of the night just as often as in the day. If you have a less common animal or something very rare is wrong with the pet, a specialty vet might be required, which not every animal hospital has. That’s why it’s important to know all the emergency vet options you have. During emergency situations, it’s not often easy to figure out what to do. Better to plan ahead!
3. Know the Signs of Fleas
Fleas can quickly turn from a minor inconvenience to a major infestation, especially if you have more than one animal in the house. Pay attention if your animals is scratching more than usual, or if you see small, dead insects in the carpet or on your floor. If you see the signs of fleas, it’s important to get a hold of the proper medication as soon as possible and stop the little creatures dead in the tracks.
4. Exercise is Important For Them, Too
All animals need to be able to exercise, though that likely will look different depending on the species. Cats need space to run and play, in the house or outdoors. Dogs should be allowed to run free in a yard area, and ideally will be taken for regular walks to make sure they get enough exercise. Just like humans, animals who don’t get enough exercise will begin to develop health problems as they age.
5. Mental Health
This tip is less about taking care of the animal and more about the animal taking care of you. Pets can be a fantastic booth to one’s mental health in many ways. Having a little friend by your side can make the darkest days seem a little brighter, and there have been proven signs of mental relief provided by dogs and cats especially. If you’re going through a tough time, it’s important to remember that a pet can be a great source of relief.
Do you have any other tips you’d like to share with first time pet owners? Or maybe even less well-known tips that older pet owners ought to know? Share them with us below in the comments section!