Published on: February 16, 2024
Author: Lauren Piandes

Whether you’re bringing a pet into your home for the first time or have had dogs for years, it’s never too late to create a safe, loving environment for your pets.


  1. Investing time, money, and attention into your pet’s health

When you have a pet, I’m sure it’s no surprise that costs can add up. To be prepared for immediate and future expenses, here are a few ways to prepare:

  1. Select durable pet items (collars, leashes, harnesses, and toys) that will last a long time without replacement*.
  2. Budget for potential emergencies, but doubly avoid this by making sure your pet has regular preventative care by keeping up with vaccinations, parasite checks, heart worm meds, etc.
  3. Make alternative plans in case you cannot care for your pet during an emergency.

*This will be harder if you get a puppy or a kitten. Just make sure that while they are babies, you seek out adjustable items for their comfort while they are still growing!


  1. Committing to exercising and mentally stimulating your pet

There are a few ways that you can commit to exercising and mentally stimulating your pet. These can include regular walks during the day/week, structured playtime or making a point to play with your pet every day, as well as implementing structured training routines.

For cats, implementing playtime and integrating certain stimulating toys into the mix, as well as making time for grooming can be enriching to your cat’s life. I find that sitting and grooming by cat helps me feel bonded to him, and I guarantee he loves pampering (at least that’s what the purring tells me!).

All these things are the building blocks to your pet becoming more well-rounded in their lives and create routines that help prevent boredom and destructive behavior in your home.


  1. Properly identify your pet

Something that is nearly non-negotiable in pet ownership is properly identifying them. The reason being that if your pet ever got out of your yard, an open window, a car, etc. their finder would be able to get them back to you as soon as possible. Here are the most reliable ways to identify your pet:

  1. Microchipping (of course!) and keeping your information up to date in PetLink.
  2. Keeping clear collar tags on your pet’s collar (there are plenty to choose from on The PetLink Store!).


  1. Socialize your pet with other animals

This is easier for dogs than cats, but properly socializing your animals with people and other pets will help your pet remain calmer, happier, and become more friendly and well-adjusted. This may involve bringing your dog to a friend or family’s home with other dogs or bringing them to the dog park for short stints while they become used to other dogs.

For cats, it’s best to socialize with them slowly and carefully. When bringing another cat into the home, you can keep cats separated to get each cat used to each other’s smell. For socializing with other people, it’s always best to allow the cat to approach first, not the other way around.

We suggest speaking to a dog trainer, your vet, or your local shelter for tips on how to safely socialize your pets without stress.