Jealous Pets: What to Consider Before Making Household Changes

by on November 11th, 2010 at 7:00 am

There is a lot to evaluate before expanding your furry-legged family by introducing new pets into the household, from added monetary considerations to more responsibilities and commitment.  Perhaps even greater than those factors is the impact of changing the existing household dynamic – namely, how your current pet will react to a new addition.

Stress and your pet

More than likely, your pet has been fond of being the center of attention, and making room for someone else to share the spotlight will require some extra effort on your part and other family members. Having a plan for the new pet in your home will make the change easier for everyone, while helping to avoid possible conflicts between the animals.

Your pet may react in different ways, from becoming depressed and withdrawn to overly excited or even aggressive. Pay attention to the signs your pet is showing you, and address the situation early on.

Tips for a smooth transition

  • Take it slow. While you may be anxious to see the natural interaction between your pets, introduce them slowly and in intervals of time while you are present to monitor the situation.
  • Dote on your ‘old’ pet. Often, the hardest part for new pet owners is to avoid showering the newbie with all the attention. Be sure to show your first pet that your home is still a secure, comfortable environment with plenty of love to go around.
  • Keep them separated. Some things should always be kept separate, such as feeding bowls and litter boxes. If you notice aggressive behavior, confront it immediately.
  • Supervise, supervise, supervise. While this was mentioned before, for the few initial months or weeks, make sure your pets are fully adjusted and getting along before leaving them together unattended.

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One Response to “Jealous Pets: What to Consider Before Making Household Changes”

  1. PG

    Nov 18th, 2010

    I’ve been lucky and not had any aggressive behaviors with my 2 boxers BUT there is always jealousy… you get the look, the whine or even pushing the other out of the way for more hugs and kisses!!! I leave the small stuff alone and let them work out their own ‘domiance’ issues but I always make sure they both get lots of love and affection, and proper correction when needed.

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