Making a pet part of your family seems like a very exciting idea. It's not just a furry little addition to your family but also a great responsibility.

New or first-time pet-parents have a lot of questions going through their mind when they get a pet. And here are some pointers for you if you are planning to or recently got a four-legged buddy.

1. Adopt. Don't Shop.

The first step to adopting a pet is to find a legitimate NGO which works towards animal welfare or an animal rescue shelter. This encourages people to adopt rather than buy. Pet shops should be a big no since they are nothing but a money-minting business and also support inhumane breeding of animals.

Do thorough research on the kind of pet you're rescuing - its nature, lifestyle requirements and how your personality fits with theirs.

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2. Find a trustworthy vet.

The second most important thing is to have a reliable veterinarian doctor. Some doctors give out false and wrong information and since pets are extremely sensitive to any incorrect treatment, you should always take references from people who already have pets.

The vet will give you a schedule for all the vaccines that your pet is supposed to get and under no circumstances should you skip a date. It is crucially important for a pet, especially a young one to get all its shots on time.

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3. Buy the right kind of food.

There are some foods that contrary to popular belief are extremely harmful for pets (read: milk). Ask the vet about the pet's dietary requirements and have a sense of discipline when feeding the pet. Animals do not function like us and need to have a set timetable for meals.

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4. The pet should have its own space in the house.

Make room for the pet. Give it its own space so that it has its own comfort zone. Train it well to sleep in its own bed so that it has a sense of territory to begin with. It is great for a pet when it has a fixed spot.

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5. Make a fixed timetable for its walks and never skip one.

The only way to make a pet get used to a certain lifestyle is to make sure everything has a schedule. A pet's only interaction with the outer world is when they go for a walk. If you do not take your pet outside, energy will keep getting trapped in its body which could result in aggression.

Source: Dogs Blog

6. Learn how to train a pet.

Since pets cannot communicate with us in our language, it is very important to make them housebroken. Think of them as babies who don't know any better. Yelling at a pet will do no good but making it realise its mistakes in a healthy manner will go a long way for both of you.

Your pet should know basic commands and the dos and don'ts of the house.

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7. Your house should be safe and pet-proof.

This is very important especially for people who live in apartments. Make sure your balconies are safe and completely pet-proof so that there is no risk to the pet's life. Also, if you live in a gated house, remember to always keep it shut or else your pet can get out.

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8. All toxic food and products should be kept away from the pet's reach.

Certain foods like chocolate and milk are very harmful for a pet's digestive system and also result in death. Be firm about what you are going to feed the pet and keep all toxic things away from it.

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9. Buy toiletries for your pet to keep them well-groomed.

Your pet needs to bathe regularly just like you and you should be ready with the products when you get one. Regular brushing so that their fur remains healthy is also very important.

Source: Bark Force

Are you ready to be a pet-parent?