The time has finally come, you’ve researched, planned, prepared all the supplies, yourself and your home. Now it’s time to bring Fido home! To ensure an easy transition for everyone there are a few important steps to take.

Transitioning your dog

The First Appointment: Sometime after the first few days of adoption, you should contact us to set up an initial visit and evaluation. During this visit we will perform a complete medical and behavioral exam. This is a great time to ask any questions that you have, and learn about what we recommend for your specific breed.

We’ll ask you questions, too…

  • How does your pet act around your other animals or children in your home?
  • Is your pet house trained and if not, what method are you using to help with this?
  • Where is your pet staying during the day while you’re away? Where and how are they sleeping?
  • How does your pet react around strangers and odd noises?
  • What is your exercise routine for your new pet? How much are they getting?

Creating Routine: Creating a routine the first few days after adoption can help everyone easily adjust. First, introduce your pet to your home, other pets and household members while on neutral territory with other pets being controlled on a leash. Once home, show the pet their new area you have designated for them, providing a treat, Kong, or bone to provide a positive experience. Give them an elimination break by taking them for a walk.

Don’t leave your cat or dog unsupervised for more than 30 minutes at a time to begin, with. When you do leave them, make sure they are in a cat or dog-proofed area.

Try to create a bed time routine right away as well, either using a crate or the confined area you’ve set up. Remember, whining and crying is normal the first few nights as everyone adjusts. No pet should never be punished for this behavior. If additional concerns arise, you can always contact us for advice.

Adopting a pet from the shelter is a major life transition for you and your dog or cat. Making sure you have researched, have planned and prepared can lead to a great first few days. As always, your vet is the expert in medical and behavioral care, so setting up an initial visit is most important. Once you’ve began to transition and create routine, you and your four legged friend can look forward to happily every after together.