Think of it like a new roommate is moving in. Only, in this case, you are responsible for supplying everything they need. And for footing the bill. And don’t count on any help with the dishes. Or the rent. Anyway, your newly adopted dog will have plenty of needs and wants, before we ever get to the things you want for them. Here is a list of things to consider before bringing your new best friend home:
The Basics: Obviously, food and water are at the top of this list. You’ll want to make sure that you keep your newly-adopted dog on their current diet to avoid any gastrointestinal upset as they transition into your home. Even if you plan to upgrade your dog’s diet, you’ll want a fair amount of their current food on hand to complete a gradual transition. You’ll also need two bowls; one for food and one for water. If you’ve adopted a larger breed dog, save time and energy by purchasing a large water dispenser.
Other Essentials: You’ll need a collar and/or harness for your new pup. Harnesses are great options for dogs that pull but remove them when the dog is in the house, as they can become uncomfortable if worn too long. A collar is a good choice for more laid back dogs and can be kept on all the time. Make sure to get your new best friend some bling for their collar or harness – an identification tag is critical. It should include your name, your pet’s name and your phone number.
Comfy places to sleep! Dogs sleep an average of 12 hours a day, so set yours up with inviting bedding. A good rule of thumb is to have one more dog bed than you have dogs. So if your new pup is a single child, you’ll need two beds to keep them cozy and happy. If your new pup is a shedder or a drooler, we suggest using a trash bag as a liner between the inside pillow of the dog bed and the cover. This way, you can wash the outer cover as often as you like and the inside pillow stays fresh and clean.
Plan Ahead: It’s so easy to get wrapped up in enjoying the first couple of days with your new friend that you may forget to do the most important things! Call your veterinarian and schedule a visit within 24 hours of bringing home your new dog to make sure there are no outstanding medical issues that need to be addressed immediately. Be sure to stock up on flea/tick preventative and heartworm prevention. This is also a perfect time to get pet insurance for your new dog. You’ll find that Trupanion offers one simple plan with deductible options to fit your budget.
Becoming a dog parent may not be easy, but worthwhile things rarely are. I say this will be the best decision you’ve ever made. If you’re thinking that now’s the time to adopt, please be sure to check out getyourpet.com to meet pets looking for a home, now, in your area.
About the Author: Angela Marcus is the founder of Get Your Pet and a life-long animal advocate who wanted to find a solution to the challenges that exist in the animal sheltering system. By empowering both pet guardians and adopters, GetYourPet.com allows pets to go from one good home to another.