Pet Bonding: Helping the Process

Can’t we all just get along? Meeting others can be a challenge, even for pets! Have no fear, here are some tips on introducing pets and helping them get along with one another—whether they’re permanent members of your family or just visiting for the holidays.

Being the owner of six cats and three dogs, I understand the difficulty of introducing a new pet to the family. There are some animals, such as my chocolate Labrador Joy, who love new family members. However, there are other animals, like my cat Abbie, who thoroughly dislike finding other furry creatures in her domain. If you find yourself wanting to adopt another pet yet are afraid to do so, have no fear! Here are tips on how to introduce new furry friends into the family with as little annoyance as possible. These tips will also come in handy if you or your loved ones travel with your pets.

With any type of new pet, it is always best to be patient with the process. You cannot force animals to like each other, and it is best that you don’t try. Animals, just like humans, need time to become acquainted and familiar with each other. When you introduce the animals, aim for neutral territory such as the living room or yard. I would not recommend placing the new pet in your old pet’s crate or sleeping spot, because this could result in the old pet becoming defensive and aggressive.

Also, allow separate spaces and possibly even times for chow time. Just like with sleeping spots, animals can become defensive around their food. Give your pets, both old and new, their own food and water bowls placed some distance apart. It is also a good idea to not give treats at the early stages of the bonding process. That can also trigger aggression, especially in dogs.

The most important thing to do after introducing a new pet is to be sure to give your old pet the same attention it has been getting. Just like humans, our furry friends can feel neglected and jealous due to the arrival of someone new at his house. Also, you may want to consider purchasing new toys for the newly adopted animal. Pets can be territorial of toys, too.

While your pets may not seem to get along at first, these tips will help to speed up the process of pet bonding.

Did you ever have to introduce a new pet into your family? Share with us tips you may have learned from the experience!

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