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Getting Your Home Ready for a New Pet

Congratulations on adopting a new pet! Before introducing your pet to his new home, you should make sure that your home is safe. Certain household items can pose a danger to animals. Here are some tips for getting your home ready for a new pet by pet-proofing it. 

Common Hazards

The most common hazards to a new pet are any dangerous foods or chemicals he may be able to get into, objects he may chew up or try to swallow, and cords or other dangling objects he can get tangled in. Go through each room and make sure that any poisonous or hazardous materials are stored on a high shelf, in a closet, or in a cabinet. Regularly check them to make sure they aren’t leaking or dripping. Switch to cordless blinds or make sure all blind cords are kept out of reach. Cover any electrical cords, outlets, or wires to prevent your pet from chewing them. Regularly pick up toys, laundry, and other items from the floor so your pet won’t chew them up or choke on them. 

Pet-Proofing Each Room

Go through each room and make sure cabinets are closed, anything dangerous is out of reach, and trash cans are in cupboards or closed with a latching lid. Get in the habit of clearing off workspaces and picking up after yourself regularly. Keep any breakable items out of reach or put them away until you get to know your new pet better. Close toilet lids, washer and dryer doors, basement and garage doors, and anywhere else your pet could get trapped. 

Preventing Escape

Make sure any escape routes are closed off, either with doors, latching gates, or baby/doggy gates. Your new pet isn’t used to his environment yet and may try to make a break for it. Don’t leave your pet alone in the yard, and keep an eye on him when he’s in rooms that aren’t closed off. Until you know your pet better, limit his access to one part of the house or keep him with you as you go from room to room.

If your pet has gotten into something dangerous in your home and you think he is ill or injured, take him to a veterinary hospital right away. If you need more advice on pet-proofing your house for the arrival of a new pet, consult with your veterinarian.

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