September 23, 2023

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Animal Planet Directory

How to be the best ‘pawrent’: ‘Animal Planet’ star shares tips

MANILA, Philippines — After mulling over it for quite some time, you are finally ready to have a pet.

You know that owning a pet is such a big responsibility because you will be a “pawrent” to a living thing — a breathing, sniffing, barking (maybe meow-ing?), jumping and high-spirited living thing — and it scares you big time. So you had to watch and learn from your friends first, and from the looks of it, owning a pet seems to be lots of fun. You get a new best friend, a companion for life and a partner-in-crime. With your own animal pal, you will be having fun and going on endless adventures together.

Here are five tips on how to be the best “pawrent” you can be for your pet.

1. Research on which is the right pet for you.

There are many kinds of pets to choose from. Whether a dog, cat, bird or fish, the choices are endless, but choosing your next companion isn’t just about how they look like. It’s about how they cohesively fit with your own personality so that you will be able to give that animal your energy level and blend him (or her) into your lifestyle.

As Amanda Giese, founder of Panda Paws Rescue, suggested, some pets and dog breeds aren’t for everyone. Dalmatians, for one, are “full of spice. A lot of people are drawn to them because they’re spotted and so unique looking and they’re beautiful, but they are a ton of energy. They’re not a dog for everyone. They’re very stubborn.”

Pets will always have this adjustment period once brought home. Each breed will react differently but soon enough, they will have adjusted to their new surroundings. Make sure that you will have everything set up before they arrive, as this will help you move forward with your new pet.

2. Apply a strict healthy diet.

It’s not just about choosing the right food that gives the nutritional requirements but it’s also about when you would be feeding your pet. Feeding your pet at random can lead to either underfeeding or overfeeding, thus resulting in your pets developing health issues in the future. Depending on the breed of the animal, you will know how many times in a day you should feed it to give it the nourishment it needs.

There’s no right or wrong answer regarding this. Simply observe your pet and see how it reacts to a certain type of food. And make sure that it’s healthy and balanced.

3. Start house-training ASAP.

The last thing you would want is for your new animal companion to become destructive around your home. Teach them where they can go to take a potty, where they should be sleeping, what they shouldn’t be chewing on and where they’re supposed to stay. Animals are able to learn basic obedience as soon as they come home. Using simple training cues and commands helps provide a sense of structure and set of rules for your animal friend to follow.

Keep in mind that you would have to be patient with your pet. An animal responds better to positive reinforcement. Giving punishments does not usually have the desired effect, as, most of the time, it could only confuse or scare the animal. Harsh punishments may even lead to aggression.

4. Teach your pet to socialize early.

Bring your animal friend to parks, malls or different play centers to experience new people, new situations and new places. Getting your animal companion to socialize early will develop a healthy behavior in it, as your pet gets used to being around other animals and people.

5. Find a good vet for your pet.

Before bringing your pet home, bring it to the vet first. All pets need and deserve a good veterinarian to monitor their development. The vet will tell you what you need to know about your pet and its unique needs, especially if it’s your first time to own a pet. Educate yourself on how to keep your pet healthy and do well on this new chapter of pet ownership.

Overall, an amazing pawrent is a responsible one. You need to commit to your pet and accept responsibility for it. Amanda Giese, star of Animal Planet’s “Amanda to the Rescue,” echoes this thought and urges new pet owners to be responsible ones. 

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