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Leigh’s Lost and Found: Patience is key to welcoming a shelter pet into your home

How to safely integrate a shelter pet into your home.
How to safely integrate a shelter pet into your home.(KYTV)
Published: Feb. 11, 2021 at 11:11 AM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - In today’s Leigh’s Lost and Found, a good reminder about giving shelter pets time to

Shelter life is loud, stressful and confusing for many of animals, so when you take one home, Humane Society of Southwest Missouri Development Director Karen Foutch, says they need time to get used to their new normal.

“We do counsel everyone that there is a specific way that you want to enter a shelter animal into your home life to make sure that they feel comfortable and they stay there.”

First, make sure they have their own safe and quiet area in your home so they can decompress.

“As much as they love you and want to play with you, they’re still trying to get acclimated to what’s going on, so they need their own little area.”

Also, watch them closely when you let them out and be sure to keep them on a leash.

“A flight instinct can happen until they’re more secure. A rule of thumb is to have two barriers before the outside, so say a baby gate and you before you open the door, or a leash and you before you open the door.”

And most of all, have a lot of patience. Don’t expect them to fit in right away or be perfectly behaved, especially if you have other pets in your home.

“An animal that we know was housebroken, a perfect family animal but because of the change that’s happened, they may not act that way. That’s where the patience comes in. Understand that this could actually take months, a full process for an animal to feel comfortable in the home.”

If you do have other pets, Karen says you should do a meet and greet at the shelter first to make sure the animals can get along before you do an official adoption.

You can make an appointment on their website.

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