Are your kids nagging you for a pet? Adopting a pet is an exciting and memorable time for your family with many emotional benefits for toddlers, such as reducing stress and providing unconditional love and comfort.
Follow these tips fto ensure the adoption experience goes smoothly for all involved.
- Find a reputable animal welfare shelter or rescue group to adopt your pet from, such as the RSPCA.
- Make sure the animal has been behaviourally and medically checked.
- For cats and dogs, ensure they are vaccinated, desexed and microchipped. Microchipping is crucial to help ensure you can be contacted if your new cat or dog goes missing.
- Before adopting, take your family along to meet the dog or cat you hope to adopt to make sure everyone gets along and the pet is suitable.
- Carefully consider if your current pets will be comfortable with a new pet being introduced to the home and ask the shelter about the possibility of a trial period introduction, to test their compatibility with each other.
- Once you take your new pet home, provide a safe place for them to go to escape noise and kids. This will help them relax into their new environment.
Never leave any children alone with your dog or cat, and always supervise their interactions with each other.
- Children will be enthusiastic when a new pet is brought home, naturally, so teaching them how to gently pat and stroke your new cat or dog is really important.
- If your kids are small, choose a dog which is not likely to be too boisterous and knock them over.
- Lastly, but most importantly, a pet is for life, so always choose a pet you can provide a home to forever.