Did You Adopt a New Pet at Empty the Shelters? We Are Here to Help!

Pick me! Pick me!  Did you adopt a new pet at Empty the Shelters this last weekend? 

We are here to help!

We know bringing home a new pet can be exciting and rewarding but also sometimes a bit confusing as well.  We have compiled some general information for you on some important points to help you and your new pet get settled as quickly as possible. 

If you have recently adopted a new pet, here are some important items you should have:

  • Leash (Dogs)
  • Collar
  • ID tags
  • Toys 
  • Food – always read labels and when in doubt consult The Dog Food Advisor for excellent information
  • Food dish and water dish
  • Crate (Dogs)
  • Litter box (Cats) –  make sure you separate their potty area from their food and water (ie. litter box in basement, food dish in kitchen and water dish in dining room)
  • Vet – take your time choosing a vet and for cats; seek out a cat only vet for the best cat specific care
  • Pet insurance – research if it is a good option for you and your new pet – there are lots of reputable pet insurance companies now and even some large employers offer a discount on it through benefits


When moving into a new home, there is an adjustment period for your new pet as well as yourself and socializing is very important regardless of the age of the pet. Be mindful that this transition can be stressful for them being in an unfamiliar place. Try not to flood your new pet with too much at once especially when introducing them to new people and places.  Take new experiences one at at a time and make sure the pet has plenty of rest between exciting new places and introductions.  

House Training:

Accidents can happen even with older dogs, especially if they have been in a kennel for an extended period of time. Always make sure you are being patient with them and in a short while they will start to know this is their home too. Start any new pet out assuming they are not house broken and put a new structured routine in place to help them understand expectations. With a puppy, this adjustment period can be just as stressful for you too! Take all new puppies/dogs out frequently and always after sleeping, playing and eating.  Use a command and reward with treats every time!

Having a trusted dog walker/pet sitter will definitely help and play a major role in routine consistency and training as well:

  • Pets stay in the comfort of their own home
  • Familiar surroundings, indoors and out
  • Routine won’t change and will be positively reinforced
  • Diet won’t change
  • Play time with their new friend
  • Reinforces training
  • Consistent exercise and play
  • Helps with socializing

Manners Training:

Training your new puppy or dog is very important to not only instill good manners, but also to immediately establish focused time for just you and them.  Always seek out a trainer who works with positive reinforcement and can educate you on how your dog is communicating and how you can best communicate back. 

Top 10 Reasons to Enroll Your New Dog in Training Classes

  • Strengthens your bond
  • Communication skills will grow between you and your pup
  • Fun for your family and your pooch
  • Decreases and/or eliminates behavior issues
  • Provides enrichment and stimulates your pup’s brain
  • Gives your dog a “job”
  • A trained dog is six times less likely to be surrendered or returned to shelter
  • Builds confidence in shy and fearful dogs
  • Creates less work for you in the long run
  • Enhances safety and can even save your dog’s life

We attend staff training by and highly recommend Mike and Chelsea at Beyond the Bark.  With both group classes and private training available locally, they are an excellent source for your dog training needs.    


Before you bring your new pet home, make sure your house is safe. Remove or store all potentially hazardous items and cleaning supplies. Both dogs and cats are curious in nature and will be extra curious coming into a new home. If you’ve adopted a puppy, make sure your home is “puppy proof”. Try not to leave them unsupervised until they learn what’s off limits. 

Click here for more information on how to “puppy proof” your home.

We hope no matter what kind of pet you adopted this weekend, you both have a wonderful time getting to know each other for a lifetime of fun and happiness! 



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