Adding a puppy or kitten to the mix is an exciting occasion for any West End family. However, getting a new pet includes tons more responsibilities for every member of the household. Here are a few tips for making sure your new furry friend is healthy and happy from the very start.
Basic Pet Care for Puppies and Kittens
Before you bring your new puppy or kitten home, make sure to have a plan for a few of the most basic elements of care. A few tips include:
- Have a plan of where the animal will sleep
- Clearly define who handles feeding and outside trips or litter box duty
- Decide what areas of your home the animal is allowed or not allowed to go
- Choose who is responsible for basic training or how the whole family will participate in the process as age-appropriate
You should also stock up on plenty of supplies. For puppies, you’ll want a soft place to sleep, plenty of training treats, pee pads, and feeding bowls. Toys and a crate are also highly recommended. Kittens need a little less, but still require a bed, toys, food bowls, and treats. Stocking up on these items now is a great way to ensure your first few weeks together go as smoothly as possible.
Healthcare for Dogs and Cats
You love your new pet and want to be sure he or she has a long life. This starts by following a routine vaccination schedule from the day you bring him or her home. Our Short Pump Animal Hospital team in Glen Allen, VA, is here to help and generally suggests the following guidelines for a typical wellness visit schedule:
- Kitten Vaccinations: In most cases, your kitten will follow a vaccination schedule at eight, twelve, and sixteen weeks. The core vaccines for most young cats consists of panleukopenia (feline distemper), feline calicivirus, feline herpesvirus type I (rhinotracheitis), and rabies vaccinations. Non-core vaccinations include those for feline leukemia virus, Bordetella, Chlamydophila felis, and feline immunodeficiency virus.
- Puppy Vaccinations: Young dogs follow a similar pattern of vaccination appointments at eight, twelve, and sixteen weeks of age. Core vaccinations for puppies entail canine parvovirus, distemper, canine hepatitis, and rabies. The most common non-core vaccinations for dogs are those that work against Bordetella bronchiseptica, Borrelia burgdorferi, and Leptospira bacteria.
During these appointments, our veterinarians will also discuss flea and tick prevention, heartworm prevention, and spaying or neutering plans. Our veterinarians will also take time to answer any questions you have about potty training, behavioral issues, or generally anything else related to the new addition to your family.
Contact Us To Schedule a Wellness Appointment
At Short Pump Animal Hospital, serving the West End, we are proud to be your trusted Glen Allen, VA, veterinary clinic. Please contact us today at 804-360-0100 to schedule a pet wellness exam appointment for your new puppy or kitten.