Grande Prairie & District SPCA
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HEALTH > YOUR NEW PET
Your New Pet
Congratulations on your adoption.

The GPSPCA wish to give a few pointers with bringing your pet into your home.  This is a time of excitement for yourselves and what can be increased stress for your newly adopted pet.  There is an adjustment period needed for your pet to adjust to their new home.

Kittens/Cats
  • cat05Please consider placing your pet within a confined space such as a bathroom or bedroom when first coming home.
    • This allows time to ensure your pet is eating and using the litter box well
    • Gives them time to relax.
    • Gives other animals within your home time smell and hear your new addition under the door without any unfavorable introductions.
    • This period of adjustment can be a few days to a few weeks depending on other animals in your home and your new animal’s personality.
  • Once your feline has relaxed enough within this area, feel free to open up the door allowing your pet to explore the rest of your home at their own pace.
  • Please don’t force pet to pet introductions, allow interaction on their own with yourself nearby for observation.
  • Hissing, swatting, running away would all be considered normal adjustment behaviors. 
  • Chasing, fighting, biting all can be warning signs that your pet may need more time to adjust
  • Leave the original litter box and food/water dishes in their places until your sure your new pet can find and is using the areas of placement you prefer.
  • Cats ideally should have one litter box per cat and ideally cleaned daily.
  • Adult cats may never be the best of friends, thou we hope at a minimum cats would accept and tolerate each other
  • Ensure cats have their own spaces for sleeping and time away from each other should they not wish to be true friends
  • Adult cats may possibly take several months to fully accept each other
  • Younger cats and kittens tend to have an easier time with adapting to new situations.
Puppies/Dogs
  • dog10Puppies have many behaviors that maybe considered undesirable, it is our job as pet owners to teach what is acceptable.
  • Digging, whining, jumping up, chewing, & nipping can all be trying behaviors in any puppy.
  • Puppies adopted from litters can be quite noisy during the quiet evenings when the household has settled down for the evening. 
  • A comfort measure can be giving the puppy a “life size” stuffed littermate for the puppy to cuddle next to. 
  • Establish a sleeping area early for your puppy/adult, weather it be a kennel or a mat, an area quiet, an area where he can go for rest, an area where he can rest undisturbed from other animals or family
  • Provide numerous chew and busy toys to keep him mentally stimulated and meet his teething needs.
  • Follow up with your veterinarian for required vaccinations before introducing your puppy to other dog environments
  • Housetraining needs to be consistent and realistic..Can be up to 5 months to have true reliability. Requires patience and can be most frustrating getting through this period.
  • The SPCA recommends puppy classes, and or a dogs manners class to help your pet become an ideal family member.