Transition and change always cause stress of some sort and every dog and cat will experience this differently and also cope with it differently. But there are some universal things you can do to make welcoming a new pet into your home a good experience for everyone.
Give them space
Do not force interaction. Let them come to you when they are ready. Remember, it’s not only the environment that is unfamiliar to them, you are as well. Cats can take weeks or even months to get used to you and their new space.
Create a safe haven
Create a space that they can retreat to when they are overwhelmed. Usually a crate with a blanket covering it is the easiest solution. This way they can take a break when they need to on their own terms.
Do not rush introductions with existing pets. Give both of them time and space to get used to being in the same general space before putting them in the same close space.
In times of Covid19, this isn’t as much of an issue, but in general it can be tempting to want to invite your friends and family to come meet your new furbaby. But please hold off on that until your new family member has had time to adjust to you and your immediate family.
Take them potty frequently/put them in the litter box
Even house trained animals can and will have accidents in a new environment and with a new schedule. Take dogs out to potty more frequently than you normally would, even with adults. Put cats in the litter box so they know where it is and change the litter more frequently than you normally would.
Food and water in a their preferred location
You may have a preferred location to put their food and water, such as the kitchen, but a high traffic location may not be a place where they feel comfortable. Put their food and water in a spot that they go to on their own. You can slowly move the bowls towards your desired location or simply move them once your pet feels comfortable.
Don’t forget about your existing pets
Adding a new pet to your home is just as much of a change for the new pet as it is for any existing pets. Give your existing pets extra attention and love and treats so they do not get jealous and know they aren’t being replaced. Do you have any tips and tricks for transitioning a new pet into your home?