Your First Pet

Bringing home a pet for the first time is undoubtedly exciting, but it can also be a big worry! There are so many new responsibilities and unknowns! Today we’re taking a look at the early days of pet ownership so first timers can feel a bit more confident about bringing their pet home.

Pet Digestive Problems: Clean Up and Worries

Pets can be cute, playful, loyal companions but the cold reality of the situation is that if you have a pet dog or kittens vomiting and diarrhea will become a bigger part of your life. Your pet’s stomach can be upset by any number of things: cats hunt and dogs often forage when off the lead, and it’s not uncommon for them to sample something that disagrees with them. They can also suffer from stress and anxiety, or even be upset by a change of food from one brand to another. 

Fortunately most feline and canine upset stomachs aren’t serious health problems and will clear up in a day or two. You only need to worry if it goes on longer or if your pet starts showing other worrying symptoms like loss of appetite.

You can help by providing lots of fresh water, small, regular meals and cleaning up the mess. Many pet owners like to use ‘enzymatic’ cleaners to clear up pet mess. These products use enzymes to break down and partially digest the biological chemicals that cause smells and stains. They’re also useful when you’re house training, to help prevent your pet returning to the site of a previous accident.

Registering With a Vet

It’s important to register your new pet with a vet. If you own a cat or dog in the UK, you’re bound by the Animal Welfare Act of 2006. While this makes few specific demands, there is a general responsibility to protect your pets from “pain, injury, suffering and disease”. The best way to meet this responsibility is to register with a vet right away so they can identify any problems and so you know where to go if you have any worries.

Many vets offer a free initial check up upon registration, so it’s worth checking what’s available in your local area. 

Once registered, your vet can let you know what vaccinations your pet will need to go outside safely, and schedule any other necessary treatments like flea and worm control, and neutering if that’s necessary.

It’s worth taking your pet for a check up every twelve months even if they appear to be well. Cats and dogs are adept at hiding pain and injury (so they don’t appear weak in the wild) and regular check ups can help to identify the early signs of serious health issues, so your vet can start treatment.