Our new registrations clearly show that many of our clients are using the current lockdown as an opportunity to add a new member to the family. Recognising that they have a rare opportunity of extra time at home to transition the pet without the usual busy work and school routine.
We firmly believe that it’s always important to ensure that pet owners have given any new pet due consideration; it’s a big commitment in terms of ongoing care. We are reassured by the fact that many of the new pets that we are seeing are joining well-looked after pets with owners that are well-versed with the steps that must be taken to keep a pet happy and healthy.
We recognise that the lockdown restrictions mean that accessing the services and resource that you need to get your pet off to the right start are not as straightforward as they would normally be. At Medivet we are adapting the way we work in our practices to ensure that we are able to offer the support that you require, while ensuring the safety of all concerned.
Below of some of the really important points that you should be considering:
Initial health check
Although this may not be able to take place face-face right now, many of our practices are offering a complimentary phone or video consult. It’s a great way to get first-hand advice from your vet and also to discuss a vaccination programme for your pet as well flea and worming treatments, which are essential in the early months. For more on the complimentary phone or video consult, click here.
Vaccinations are vital and you must ensure that your pet has their first vaccination when they are 8 weeks old. In many cases this will already have been done by the breeder. The next vaccination is when they are 12 weeks old, and the final vaccination at 16 weeks of age. Ensure that you have these dates all booked with your vet as soon as possible. It is worth noting that ahead of any vaccination, our vet will always carry out a health-check.
Puppy and kitten vaccinations are considered essential, so please do not delay these, it’s important that you speak to your vet.
Accident and illness can happen at any time and although there is a common misconception that insurance is only required for older pets, this is definitely not the case. Your new pet is likely to be inquisitive and possibly a little accident prone, so insurance is important. It’s worth remembering that insuring your pet from an early age will mean that they are registered free of any pre-existing health conditions and will be fully covered in the future. Talk to your vet about complimentary 4-week cover for the early days or while you research what works best for you.
Flea and worming
Regular flea and worm treatment is key for all pets, but especially for puppies and kittens in the first few months of their lives. Many puppies and kittens are born with worms that are passed on from their mother; it is important that these are eliminated as quickly as possible to allow your pet to thrive and grow.
Socialisation and training
There are many areas that you will need to train your new pet on, such as toilet training, and interacting with other family members, especially children. Everything will be new to them and you’ll want to settle them in as quickly as possible. Our vet will be able to advise you on the best approach to this for both puppies and kittens.
Take a look at our puppy and kitten guide. This will give you a lot more detail on the areas covered above.
We are aware that there is a bit more that you will need to do to train a puppy. Many of our clients attend our puppy parties or attend a puppy training school. Unfortunately, the current restrictions mean that neither of these are possible. However, we have partnered with a team of puppy training behaviourists who are able to offer puppy training online and from the comfort of your own home, complete this enquiry form and we will get back to you with details.
A final point and another priority for new pet-owners is ensuring that you get your pet microchipped as quickly as possible. In the UK, it’s a legal requirement for dogs, but is equally important for cats and kittens who have a tendency to wander or turn out to be escape artists. A microchip is simple and speedy. Many pets are already chipped when they leave the breeder, make sure you check and get the details updated to your own.
Enjoy your new puppy or kitten, we look forward to meeting them soon.
For advice on the health of your pet, speak to your local Medivet practice.
Getting a new puppy or kitten is an exciting time, but it can be stressful too. With so much to learn about how to give your pet the best start in life, becoming a new owner can sometimes feel daunting. Read our essential guides for caring for your puppy or kitten and download your free Puppy and Kitten Guide, packed with information about their first year.