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Animals | August 9, 2018

Quick Tips to Adding a Shelter Pet to Your Home

Animals Pet & Animal Dog Cat Country Mindset Farmer Homesteader Blue Collar Coastal Community Pets

There are millions of dogs in U.S. animal shelters hoping to be adopted. However, over 3-million of those adoptable pets are euthanized every year. When you adopt a shelter animal, you could be saving their life. But there are a few tricks to properly integrating a new dog into your happy home.

Prepare Your House

If you rent, be ready to supply proof that a dog or cat is allowed to live in your house or apartment. Additionally, put away any breakable items and other dog toys to avoid damage or causing a fight (if you have another dog). You’ll also want to give your possible new best friend some space if its own. For example, set up a crate with a bed or blankets in a quiet room of the house. This will give the dog a place to be alone for the first 24 hours and unwind for the first week.

Match the Dog to Your Life

Many shelters will help you choose a pet that’s right for you. Tell them if you have other pets in your home (dogs or cats), how active your family is, how much room there is to run, and whether or not they will be around kids or livestock. To avoid possible issues, some shelters will urge you to take home a dog that is the opposite sex of your current pet. This can avoid dominance issues.

The Whole Family Should be There

Bring the kids and anyone else who lives in the house to the shelter. If the dog and one or more of your family members don’t get along at the shelter, there could be issues at home as well.

Take Things Slow

Shelters often have a grace period before you are committed to adopting the dog. In fact, some shelters do background checks and come visit the pet in your home to ensure a good fit. Ask your shelter if it is possible to take a pet home overnight on a trial basis.

Take Them Outside First

When you bring home a new dog, one of the first things you should do is show them where do their bathroom business. If you already have a dog, smell will guide their way. Otherwise, you may need to stay with them in the designated area until they go. Be sure to lavish them with praise when they’re done.

Keep Things Calm

Give your new dog space of its own. Keep the kids and other pets from interacting too much with the new pet for the first night.

If you have a dominant or overly playful pet at home, keep them separated from each other for at least 24 hours. This will also get your current pet accustomed to new smells in the house, which can help avoid confrontations.

Allow Them to Wander

After a few days, if you decide the pet is right for you, then allow them to wander a bit throughout your home or backyard. They may be skittish at first, but will likely warm up if you are encouraging.

Help Clear the Shelters on August 18th

Hill’s® Science Diet®, along with other sponsors, wants your help to find new homes for over 100,000 pets. You can join them. Visit to find an animal shelter near you and go home with a new family member on that day – or any day.

Win a Year’s Worth of Dog Food

When you adopt a new pet, you’ll need plenty of good food to keep that pet happy and healthy, and Hill’s® Science Diet® has you covered. Enter to win one weekly grand prize of a year’s worth of Science Diet food* and $500 donated to a participating animal shelter. You could also instantly win a small bag or can of Hill’s® Science Diet® pet food**. Enter to win at

Coastal is Your Adopted Pet Headquarters

You’ll find everything you need for all of your furry family members at your Northwest owned and operated Coastal. That includes toys, treats, bowls, beds, coats, crates, training tools, food, and kennels. You’re even welcome to bring your pet to the store and wander the aisles together.

*No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Hill’s® Science Diet® Every Great Day Promotion is open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. and D.C., 18 & older. Ends 1/7/2019. One game play per person per day. One sweepstakes entry per person per Weekly Entry Period. Subject to verification, winners will receive their prize via mail within 3-4 weeks. **First prize is awarded in the form of 1 coupon valued at $15.99. Second prize is awarded in the form of 1 coupon valued at $2.59. Approximate odds of winning: Instant first prize – 1:1,250; Instant second prize – 1:390.

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