Essentials to Buy Before Your New Pet Arrives
What you need to help your companion feel right at home
Welcoming a new pet into your home can be both exciting and stressful. CR spoke with animal experts for advice on how to minimize hassle and prepare for the arrival of a new dog or cat. The following essentials can all be purchased before the pet arrives, though you’ll need to know the size of the animal to purchase several of them.
“Buying online offers a lot of convenience but also a lot of choice,” says veterinarian JoAnna Pendergrass. “If you have questions about a product, always ask your veterinarian or shelter for advice before you buy.”
Food and Water Bowls: Pendergrass recommends stainless steel bowls. “Unlike ceramic and plastic, stainless steel bowls won't develop hard-to-clean scratches or cracks that could lead to bacterial contamination,” she says.
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Dog crate: “A crate provides a dog with its own safe space within the house to rest and retreat to,” says Irit Grader, a veterinarian and assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. “You want the dog to be able to comfortably stand, turn around, and lay down splayed in the crate,” Grader says. Some crates have a partition that can be inserted to reduce the space when a dog is young, then removed to provide more room as a young dog matures and grows. Pendergrass recommends also buying blankets with the crate. “Draping blankets over the crate and placing them inside helps create the denlike environment dogs are comfortable in.”
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