Strengthening the Connection Between Pets and Their Owners
Let the bonding begin! There’s nothing quite like welcoming a new pet into your home. While snuggles and playtime may come naturally, you might be wondering if there’s anything extra you should be doing to nurture a connection with a new pet.
Here are some tips for connecting with your pet!
Like humans, pets thrive when they are given attention and affection. Simply spending time with your pet is the best way to nurture a strong connection. However, there are some activities that can also strengthen that unmatchable human-animal bond. Take a look!
Teaching a dog new tricks is about more than getting applause from onlookers. When you train pets to perform actions or respond to cues, you are actually boosting their cognitive abilities and brain health. What’s more, pets enjoy the positive reinforcement they receive from performing tricks.
One of the best ways to bond with your pet is to participate in pet-centric activities. Bringing a dog to a dog park is a fantastic way to allow your best friend to socialize with other dogs. Park time and neighborhood walks also help your pet to strengthen muscles, develop agility, and fight obesity.
Scheduling daily playtime with your pet is one of the most important ways to foster a strong bond. Consider picking up some toys that are appropriate for your pet to “get the ball rolling” on playtime.
Even a “couch potato” cat or dog can’t resist the allure of a squeaky toy or bouncy ball. Some top playtime picks for pets include tugging at a rope, playing fetch with a ball or plastic disc, tossing soft toys, and mimicking cat-and-mouse shenanigans with a feather wand.
Regularly brushing, bathing, clipping, and pruning your pet can create a strong bond. In the animal world, grooming another member of the pack is a sign of trust and affection. While dogs require regular baths, cats rarely need bathing.
In fact, bathing a cat too much can throw a fur coat’s natural oils out of balance.
Cat owners should still routinely brush and “massage” the tail, ears, and paws as part of a grooming ritual. In addition to keeping a pet healthy, routine grooming also gives a pet owner a chance to notice any bumps, dry spots, or other irregularities on the skin or coat.
First-time pet owners often struggle with knowing if they are “doing enough” to help their pets settle in. While you don’t necessarily need to do extra work to bond with your new pet, it is important to create an environment that makes bonding easy.
Starting with obedience training right away is a perfect way to bond with your pet while also creating clear boundaries that will keep unnecessary stress and anxiety out of the relationship. It’s also important not to let “love” prevent you from recognizing any behavioral issues that require professional intervention or training.
Finally, first-time pet owners should avoid the temptation to use treats as bonding tools. This is especially difficult if food is your “love language.” While treats have a place in training, giving too many treats could interfere with your pet’s nutritional balance.
Overfeeding your pet can set them up for obesity, digestive issues, and other long-term health issues.
One of the reasons why bonding with your pet early is so important is that a friendly, well-adjusted pet is going to have an easier time with medical checkups.
Many pet owners sign up for pet health insurance immediately after welcoming a new pet because it helps them to pay less for the best care possible. It’s crucial that you schedule regular wellness and preventative checkups for your new pet.
Consistent veterinary care can enable your pet to live a long, healthy life! Who doesn’t like the idea of getting more time with their best friend?