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Helping a Shelter Pet Settle In

Did you know that October is Adopt A Shelter Pet Month? This is a wonderful cause, and one we are happy to support. And, with the recent devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, the plight of pets in shelters is definitely something we want to spotlight. Many people have stepped up to help dogs and cats that were left homeless after the storm. If you have adopted a shelter pet, or are planning to, you have our full support! In this article, a WestLake, TX vet discusses helping shelter pets settle in.

Supplies

Your furry pal will need toys, treats, bedding, dishes, and grooming supplies. Fluffy will also need a litterbox, while Fido will need a leash and collar. If possible, arrange all of these things in a quiet back room. This will give your pet a safe, comfortable place to relax and settle in.

Adjustment

Don’t be surprised if your furry friend sleeps a lot at first. Being in a shelter can be very scary for pets! If your dog or cat is a storm survivor, he or she was also likely traumatized by that experience. We strongly recommend scheduling a veterinary appointment during the first few weeks, but aside from that, just give your four-legged pal time to adjust, and focus on offering great care. Treats, toys, and ear scritches will help win your new buddy’s trust.

Dogs

If Fido was rescued after the storm, he may be very nervous and easily spooked, especially in bad weather. When the skies darken, put him in a quiet back room with bedding and some toys, and turn a radio or TV on to mask the noise. A dog-calming shirt may also help. We also recommend getting a good, sturdy leash: if your canine buddy gets frightened suddenly and tries to bolt, you don’t want his leash to snap! If you have a yard, you’ll also want to make sure your fencing is secure.

Cats

Cats are both healthier and safer indoors, so be sure to keep Fluffy inside. To make your home safe and comfy for her, set out lots of beds and fun cat toys. Your feline friend may feel more secure in an enclosed spot, so get her a pet tent or cat tipi.

Do you have questions or concerns about your pet’s health or care? Contact us, your WestLake, TX animal clinic!

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