When you bring a furry tail into your home and life, there is no doubt about it – you want to do every single thing in your power to make their lives the best that they can ever be. However, as a pet owner, you may end up making mistakes that can potentially harm them. Knowledge is key, so read on so you can avoid making the same mistakes!

Impulsive buying or adoption

The problem

We’ve all been through it – we see a picture of a little kitten or a puppy up for adoption, and we may immediately want to take them home. Although the impulsive reaction is normal, acting on it without thinking the logistics of it through can be dangerous for you and your pet. If you aren’t prepared for the animal to come home, you may face issues and may not be able to give them the perfect forever home they need.

The solution

Don’t just buy or adopt an animal based on their looks – research their breed, age, etc. and make sure that you have the means to give them what they require. Also, make sure to pet-proof your home and avoid any hazardous things that can harm them in the future. Lastly, before you bring an animal home and let them adjust, be sure about your decision. Bringing him or her home and then having to rehome will be distressing for you and the pet.

Tips for Pets owner

Setting house rules

The problem

With animals, you always need to set rules about what is or isn’t okay in the house. If there aren’t any consistent rules, your pet will become confused about what is and isn’t okay in the house, and may stop obeying them altogether, which can be a source of irritation and anger for you as the pet owner, along with the other people in the house.

The solution

Want your pet to behave at home? Set ground rules and stick to them. Use reinforcements (treats, toys, and encouragements) when you want to increase a behavior in your pets or use punishments like withdrawal to discourage behaviors. Remember to be loving to your pet and not to yell at, or lose your temper with your pet as that would just confuse them.

Providing fear

The problem

Sometimes, unintentionally, pet owners may not recognize fear in their pets. They may mistake their pet’s aggression or ‘strange habits’ and not understand that the underlying cause is fear, and continue to place them in that anxiety-inducing situation.

The solution

Over time, learn to recognize the signs of fear in your pet, and either help them through it with love, encouragement, and support or take them away from the fear-inducing situation. Do not become a source of fear as your pet may start to recognize you as a source of fear and associate you with fear and anxiety, which you most definitely don’t want.

Untrained dog walks

The problem

One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a dog owner is to start walking your dog without training them first. For example, you need to choose a side to let your dog walk on during your morning stroll. If you let your dog walk ahead of you, you may end up falling down, tripping over your pet, or getting seriously injured.

The solution

The best way to avoid this problem is to make sure your dog knows how to follow you on the walk and listens to you instead of pulling on the leash or leading you. Obedience training is essential, and you can complement the training with encouragement and treats.

Not listening to the vet

The problem

When you visit a vet, you may take what he or she is saying about your pet lightly. More often than not, you can save your pet from a lot of pain and discomfort when you take what your vet is saying seriously. Failing to do so can leave your pet without the care they need and cause them a lot of unnecessary distress.

The solution

Listen to your vet and take every single recommendation they give you very seriously. If they ask you to do something and you find it difficult, don’t shy away. Explain your situation and ask them for alternatives. Chances are, you may have the perfect solution available for you anyway.

Improper bathing

The problem

Giving your pet a bath can be a trying process, and you may make certain mistakes. If the water is too hot or too cold, your pet can get hurt or sick. Also, some pet owners may start using their own shampoo, which can damage their skin or affect their bodily pH.

The solution

When giving your pet a bath, make sure the water is warm, but not hot. As for which shampoo to use, remember to use one of the specialized shampoos for your pet. Also, make sure to rub the soap in a way that is spread out well between the fur and is soaked in.

Ignoring health problems

The problem

One big mistake you can make with a pet is to ignore the signs that he or she is unwell. If not given the proper attention at the right time, things can get worse and cause you and your pet a lot of damage, which could have easily been avoided if they were diagnosed at the right time.

The solution

Be wary of your pet’s eating and sleeping schedules. If you observe any changes, it never hurts to ask your vet what could possibly be wrong. Also, keep an eye out for any other behaviours that may not make sense such as constant scratching, which can be an indication of mites or ticks.

Avoiding spaying or neutering

The problem

You may think that by avoiding spaying or neutering, you can keep your pets from being lazy, but not neutering your pets may put them at a higher risk of diseases, as well as lowering their life expectancy. In addition, non-neutered animals may wander out and have more litters, which can increase stray populations, as well as spreading and contracting diseases from other cats during the process.

The solution

Check in with your vet, and when your pet is old enough, get them neutered or spayed. This way, you can prevent them from contracting diseases, help reduce stray populations, and also reduce certain behaviours such as aggression and spraying in male animals.

Unsupervised meetings with children

The problem

Although many animals are very friendly and happy when meeting children, they may act out uncharacteristically and harm young children. This may happen because children tend to be curious and want to touch and play with the animal, which may agitate him or her.

The solution

Always, regardless of the animal’s breed or age, supervise any meeting you have with young children and animals. Make sure that (if the children are capable) the children know how to act around the animal, and what is or isn’t okay behaviour.

At the end of the day, as a pet owner, all you need to do is to keep all of these tips in mind and you can avoid a lot of problems with your pet.

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