Monday, July 22, 2013

Multiple Pets in a Home

There are benefits to multiple pets in a home.  Many dogs and cats, just like people enjoy the companionship and comfort another animal brings.  With a few exceptions, pets are usually happier with other pets.  Pets not only entertain one another, but they can reduce feelings of separation anxiety and for some, the dreaded feeling of being alone. An additional dog or cat can give existing animals a sense of well-being. However, the added investment needed to care for another pet should always be considered in advance.  Food, grooming, boarding and veterinary care should be a part of the family budget.

There are many reasons for adding a pet.  In addition to companionship, another animal can help revitalize an aging pet.  Older dogs come to life and move more, inadvertently exercising and resulting in better health.

Let's take a look at a few things to consider when adding another pet for a smoother, calmer transition.

1. Take in consideration the health and age of existing pets.  An additional younger pet can pester an older         animal mercilessly, causing undue and continual stress.

2. Consider choosing a breed that will work well with the pets you already have.  If you have an active dog,
    perhaps another active dog would work.

3. Make sure you pets new and old are up to date on pet vaccinations and parasite screening.  

4.  Check compatibility of your new pet with your old pet. It's best to have pets meet for the first time outside the home.  Perhaps a park would be a good place.  Try to walk the dogs together, sometimes, this can help calm anxiety.  If all goes well, have both animals meet in the cul-de-sac or area in front of the house.  Eventually move to the front lawn if all goes well.  These meetings should help both animals to better be at ease at an in-house meeting.

5.  Remember to give positive reinforcement when the animals act positively towards one another.  This lets them know you think it's OK they are together.

After adopting a pet, make sure to give both new and old pets plenty of time and love. If behavioral problems arise, Marietta Vet Clinic, and veterinarian +Julian Peckich DVM  will be happy to discuss any specific issues.  Pet generally are happier with others and with a little effort, it usually can be achieved.