1. If You Don’t Do Your Homework, You Could End Up with the Wrong Pet
How could a pet be the wrong one? Well, for example, if you adopt a long-haired cat and have allergies, you could be miserable in a matter of minutes. Doing your homework to determine the right breed of cat for you is essential to having a long, happy relationship with your first pet.
Thankfully, MSN has curated a list of the best and worst cat breeds for people with allergies. Persian cats, Maine Coon cats, black cats, and Norwegian Forest cats are on the list to avoid. On the other hand, Sphynx cats, Siberian cats, Cornish Rex cats, Russian Blue cats, and Balinese cats are considered more hypoallergenic.
If you are not allergic to cats, you should consider characteristics of the animal you intend to adopt before taking the plunge. For example, kittens need a lot of attention and time to play, whereas older cats tend to be more solitary and low maintenance.
If you’re planning on adopting an elderly cat, here are some useful tips on modifying your home for older pets.
2. If You Don’t Prepare Your Home, Your Pet Won’t Be Safe
You may have friends who spent weeks baby-proofing their homes when their infants began rolling over and crawling. In reality, pet-proofing your home is just as important for the safety and well-being of your new four-legged baby. Even if you are adopting a more mature animal, you should prepare your home for his arrival with time to spare.
Some of the best practices for pet-proofing your home include
- Using childproof latches to keep your cat from getting into cabinets, closets, or cupboards that contain cleaning products or food
- Keeping medication, laundry supplies (especially detergent pods), and chemicals out of reach, even if you use childproof latches
- Covering trash cans or keeping them out of reach
- Eliminating loose wires or cords from electronics
- Ensuring your plants are not poisonous
Of course, you’ll want to play with your pet and get acquainted as soon as you bring it home. But, your pet will need time to adjust to its new surroundings, and you need to help it through the transition. This is especially true if you have adopted a rescue animal who may have been abused or in a shelter for quite some time.
One of the best ways to help your pet feel at home is to give them their own space. You should have a cat bed, toys, and scratch posts or boxes in a dedicated space. You also should keep its food and water in the same place. If your cat needs a hiding place, make a cage available to it, and allow them to remain in their cage when guests visit, especially if a dog is a potential guest.
4. Make Sure Owning a Pet Won’t Be a Financial Hardship
The idea of a fast friendship with a new pet can easily overshadow the importance of assessing your ability to afford this pet. Do the math first. Can you afford food, toys, vaccinations, and random visits to the vet? If the answer is no, you should forgo getting an animal that you might have to give up. If the answer is yes, then you are in the perfect position to welcome a new cat into your home.
Becoming a first-time pet owner will be more enjoyable for you and your new cat if you do your homework first, prepare your home, and take steps to acclimate it to your home. This sets the stage for the friendship of a lifetime.
Ms. Brody created OurBestFriends to offer a place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals.