Tips for adopting a stray pet

So you’ve been thinking about adopting a stray pet dog or cat? Here are some friendly tips on how to do it.

First check out the animal, if it is growling, foaming from the mouth, or making other threatening movements look up the number for the nearest animal control center or call your local police. It could be infected with rabies or other diseases and it’s best to let a professional handle it.

If the animal looks friendly and you are going to handle it make sure to put on some sort of protective gloves or get a towel to grab it with. You don’t want to end up with bites or scratches if the animal becomes frightened. Check it for a collar with contact information. If there is a collar call the owner immediately! Think how you would feel if you lost a pet!

Inspect the animal for injuries, if there are any take it to a veterinary hospital. If you do then you should expect to take full financial responsibility for the animal. If you don’t want to adopt the pet take it to an animal rescue shelter in your area. If you feel yourself getting attached to the animal and you want to adopt it then you must do a few things.

Take your new pet to the veterinary hospital. Ask to have the animal vaccinated against common diseases. If you have a pet cat, I recommend removing the claws from its front paws (keep the back claws so that if the cat ever has to defend itself outdoors it can). It may sound harsh but it doesn’t hurt the cat and it prevents your furniture and other things from getting scratched up! If you don’t plan on taking care of any new kittens or puppies in the future then you should consider getting your pet neutered/spade also.

Once the animal is healthy, take it home. Spend a good amount of time with your new pet dog or cat so that it feels comfortable in your home. It normally takes a few days for an animal to adjust to a new environment. Buy it necessities such as: food and water bowls, a leash for a pet dog, a litter box for a pet cat, toys to play with, treats, and any other things you think your personal pet would enjoy. If you’re unsure about what food to buy ask your veterinarian what he/she recommends. The healthiest is probably dry food and plain water. Do not give your pet cat milk or your pet dog chocolate! Milk causes diarrhea in cats and chocolate is toxic to dogs.

Make sure you train your pet. If it is a cat, teach it to use the litter box; if it is a dog, make sure to take it out regularly to go to the bathroom, take walks, and just get some fresh air. If you decide to let your animal be outdoors you will want to take the necessary precautions against ticks, fleas, and other parasites. Ask your veterinarian what medicines to give your pet. Last but not least, make sure to put a collar on your pet! You don’t want to have it run away or get lost now do you?

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