With the rise of the #AdoptDontShop hashtag on social media, more and more people are beginning to adopt their pets instead of buying from breeders. Twitter and Facebook are great at making people aware of how many dogs and cats are out there waiting to find a home. With a mixture of puppies, kittens and older dogs or cats, there is a pet out there for everyone.
Sometimes dogs and cats will be in and out of shelters their whole lives. Many of them have sad stories that make them less trusting of humans because of how they have been treated in the past. Adopting a pet allows you to show them what it means to be loved, but sometimes it can take time to bond with an adopted pet. But with love and perseverance, you can create a life-long bond with them.
You’ve already chosen which pet you want to adopt, and all the paperwork went through, now you can prepare for welcoming them into your home. There are a few things to have in place before they arrive such as: Buying new food for them, getting the perfect bed, cleaning supplies and ID tags.
You will also need to make sure your home is clean, and dog or cat proofed for when they arrive. Animals can react differently to new environments and it can take them some time to get used to the new smells. It pays to be prepared for anything that might happen, such as them peeing on the carpet because they’re nervous.
At the time of choosing your pet, you will have been made aware of their previous situation and upbringing. This can help you to prepare for when they go home with you, as a lot of rescues can have anxiety or not be trained correctly.
Spend Time Together
One of the best ways to bond with your newly adopted pet is to spend quality time with them. Some of the best ways to do this, in the beginning, is to sit with them and talk to them, letting them know that everything is okay.
Most rescues are shy when they go to their new home but staying close and inviting them to be nearer can help them to warm up to you. You’ll soon find that they will willingly come to receive love from you in the forms of hugs and kisses.
Another way to build the bond is to get involved in play time. This could be as simple as going out for a walk, playing in the garden, or even buying them some new toys. It will help them to realize that you can be trusted and are a lot of fun to be around.
Give Them Praise
We all like a little praise to know we’re doing okay, whether it’s at school or work, and the same goes for your adopted pet. Stroking your dog and cat until their tail wags or they purr builds the connection between the two of you. It will make them feel loved when you tell them how good they are and talking to them in a soft tone that makes them feel safe.
Allow Them Some Alone Time
At the same time as spending time with them and showing them love, you need to know when they need some alone time. It can be very overwhelming for an animal to be in a new home surrounded by unfamiliar people.
A separate space that is secure with everything they need such as food and water will help them to feel at ease. Some pets, such as cats, want places where they can hide. It is their natural instinct to be wary, but it is completely normal. They will be around you more when they feel comfortable, so don’t worry about them disliking you straight away.
Start Training Together
Something that can help your adopted pet to trust you and strengthen the bond is to start doing training exercises together. You don’t have to sign them up to professional classes straight away, but you can start doing basic commands at home.
Reward them with their favorite treats when they get it right to show them how great they’re doing. When both of you grow in confidence you can enter them for classes and competitions. It isn’t just dogs that you can teach tricks to either, as cats, and even rats, have the ability to do tricks when they want to.
The key to helping your newly adopted pet relax into their new life is consistency. A routine will help them to adjust to your way of living, as well as showing them how loving you will be towards them. Before you know it, the two of you will be the best of friends with a lifetime of happiness ahead of you.